PSAS/ news/ 2003-01-07 - 5/4/2003 is freeze and launch call. 1/26 kickoff meeting scheduled.

Attendees: Andrew, Brian, Ray, Paul, Michael, Dave, Myles, Mick, Ted, Bart, James, Tim, Dennis, Maggie, Jamey, Larry

Proposed Schedule

Agreed that the proposal last time still works. It gives us a week off between the end of finals week and the launch.

Airframe Update

Brian says we can do two more airframes for a total of three. We discussed why so many, mostly because we want backups in case of the untimely demise of an earlier unit.

Floating Upper Module - Electrically floating - this is indeed the time to plan this. By putting an electrically insulating ring between modules we can place antennas in there. Bart asked if it was appropriately sized and spaced (electromagnetically) and yes, it is. It may be easiest to make the ring with by lathing down the Al couplers or by using fiberglass couplers instead.

Brian is also looking into deployable payloads.

Brian wants a hybrid rocket motor real soon. He sees this as a design project for his applied fluids class.

Brian will talk to Randy for a bigger main parachute. Brian checked our design at 15 feet per second. He feels the flimsy canister was the main problem. The problem was wowed screwholes and this can be easily turned 30 degrees and redrilled.

June Launch Thoughts

A guy from the Oregon Rocketry Club bough the Brothers Launch Site property. Brian can contact John Lingell for his. This may improve our ceilings and we may be able to help Tripoli get a higher and more permanent waiver. Ours was 20,000 feet AGL.

We have an M and an N motor. The M's airtight wrapping was opened at Black Rock and is currently oxidizing. We will need to research the 'freshness'. The main problem is that it will be hard to start the motor. A suggestion was made to give the motor to GoodWill but nahhh... it was a gift from the EE department and it can help us. It is a high thrust, short burn time M.

More Hardware

Launch clamps. A few more weeks before we can get started on this. The preexisting clamps can still be used, in a pinch. Also note our two "mushrooms" worked fine.

Longer-term Ruminations

Master plan for the PSAS: first avionics, then hybrids, then steerable hybrids, then staging/clustering, then microsatellites in orbit! ;)

Brian thinks that a Liquid Oxygen hybrid will require hemispherical-ended tankage, and this will likely give us a fat rocket. The end result is that it may make sense to develop a staging module that is a hybrid, and put the solid stage on top (or on bottom).


Avionics hardware. Boards are back, Andrew reports. Mick and Ted did the gerber project, yay! 4 boards on one sheet got bandsawed apart and it worked well. Great progress is happening. They have a differential GPS ground station wired up, misc. CAN nodes, and Ted just finished soldering up the power distribution board -- it's almost done. The CAN board should switch on and off the main power system within the next week.

Avionics software/hardware integration is slated for January 26th. If we succeed at doing this then we can just start working on application software. Our drop dead for hardware is May 4th, this will allow us plenty of time for finals, and for any refinement. Bart says we should have a very clear deadline well before the launch date so that we can notify people whether the launch is on or off. The diagram of what we are going to launch can be found elsewhere on this site.

Grant Writing.

We are writing a grant now. There's also another possibility we are investigating.

Avionics Team Meeting

A followon meeting for Avionics Team.

May 4th is the FAA Waiver filing and the drop-dead date. Only testing and defect repair after May 4th. We need working IMU, GPS, pyrotechnic CAN node, Power distribution board. A working minimal flight state machine and data logging system. Stretch goals: flight accelerometer, GPS, telemetry, Andrew Paul's navigation software.

This means we need to get kicking on software. January 26 is going to be our big kickoff. Marcus, Paul, and Andrew will get working hardware and firmware to support the integration then.

Larry will get his Range Safety Java app done by the 26th so he can work on flight state machine software thereafter. Larry is taking two classes. He might also work on parallel port poking, if we haven't moved that off to a CAN board.

Ted & Jamey will replace the hardware at the launch tower.

David needs a new assignment 'cause his existing work is done. He's going to set up a Linux system for his own use.

Michael will join the PIC people.

Tim will be making things explode (pyro board).

Glenn needs help, Dennis can probably help him. We need an ultra-small 2m reciever. Andrew will email Dennis a spec. 2m FM RX on rocket, maybe even digitally tunable (easily tunable), tiny. Vibration resistent (no air coils). MC13135.