Photo Synthesis

Steve Jurvetson

Video Rockets – Part 2

Looking Outward With a big enough airframe, the camera can be inside looking out, or bouncing off a 45° mirror, or both. For my Level 3 Certification, I buily a 7.5″ diameter GLR Sledgehammer and fiberglassed it for strength: I simulate the flights before launch, and compare the actual performance recorded by two on-board flight…

Video Rockets

Part 1 – Looking Down with a Strap-on Videocamera I fiberglassed half of a plastic Easter Egg as the nose cone for an Oregon Scientific action cam, so it can be a strap-on on various rockets: One of my goals has been to capture another rocket launching up after me as a chaser: And sometimes…

The Beauty of Night Rockets

The long exposure presents all kinds of interesting visuals, from simple Estes propellant grains showering down… …to the errant path of an unstable rocket: Here’s another example of an unstable flight followed by the fiery forward spray of a motor closure failure under pressure: And different propellant grains provide wonderful lighting: And of course, all…

Maker Faire Rockets

For those of you near Silicon Valley this weekend, Maker Faire is a cornucopia of geek delights and sights. And if you want to learn rocketry 101, the local rocket club – LUNAR, which happens to be the largest in America – will be running workshops throughout the weekend where you can build and fly…

Persistence

Gene Nowaczyk is aiming for the big prize – a successful launch to 100,000 ft. After 50 hours/week over two years, he drove his custom airframe from Missouri in a huge truck. Here is prepping the upper section, packed with electronics. He put an incredible amount of work and craftsmanship into this machined metal rocket.…

Memorial Day Memorabilia

A pair of Army scale rockets line up in the desert… Five sparky research motors clustered together (four M’s and an O) in the Little John give quite a show: and then a another Deep sub-woofer blastoff with a cluster of five AMW motors. Jack’s Nike Smoke is 19 ft. tall, and 422 lbs. (lots…

Bisecting the Moonrise

Richard Hagen’s rocket, flying on a Aerotech J500G motor, created a wonderful night light over the Black Rock Desert playa. With some of the night photos, there are random RGB pixels; digital astronomy photography becomes an exercise in the statistics of noise. The high-end photographers liquid cool their sensors and build images from a large…

Rocket Propellant Types

Beyond the thrust curve, there is an art to the color of the propellant (achieved through special metal salt additives). My 9 ft tall Sledgehammer, lifting off on a M1550 Redline motor from Aerotech, one of my favorite photos: The shadow of dusk in the foreground really lets the color pop. The smoke and dust…

Blinky Bling Bliss

Kids at the candy shop… from the DairyAire launch event this weekend. For a sense of how the photonic Ritalin works, this is what my rocket looks like as an example: For a while, I’ve wanted to use a funky armored car fisheye lens from Belarus for night rocketry. I tested it at dusk: and…

Hybrid Rocket Hijinks

It was hot at the Dairy Aire launch this weekend. 103°F, with cows. What weather forecast is that? The cattle packed into the nearby Harris Ranch pens literally create local fog as they sweat into dusk. Mix with a little methane, and you get Dairy Aire. Here was one of my favorite shots… 2.25 seconds…