USyd rocketry team first Aussies to contend US challenge

By on 19 June, 2019

The USyd rocketry team’s Silvereye rocket reached a height of 10,000 feet during testing.

The team will be the first Australian team to participate at the Spaceport America Cup Rocket Engineering Competition being held in New Mexico, this month.

The University of Sydney (USYD) has announced that its rocketry team will be competing for the 2019 Spaceport America Cup, an annual university rocket technology competition that takes place in New Mexico.

The competition has attracted 100 university teams across the globe,  and each of these teams will be launching their student-built rockets in a race during the competition.

USyd’s team has entered its custom-built rocket Silvereye in the 10,000 feet commercial off-the-shelf category of the Spaceport America Cup Competition. Silvereye will be launched with a commercial solid rocket motor and a target altitude exceeding 3 kilometres.

Silvereye blasted off to a record stature of more than 10,000 feet on its very first flight, during testing in New South Wales. The 23kg rocket has reached a maximum speed of over 1,000 km/h while carrying a miniature satellite.

The USyd team’s chief engineer, aerospace engineering student Mitchell Galletly explained, “Silvereye is able to fly any standard 2U sized CubeSat, allowing us to achieve a variety of missions such as test flying student-built satellites or even performing low gravity experiments,” he said.

“We have used a systems engineering approach to design our rocket from the ground up in order for it to be safe, reliable and customisable,” he said.

Silvereye is the second rocket to be completely designed and created by the University of Sydney Rocketry Team following the dispatch of their first rocket, Wedgetail, back in 2017.

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