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Last updated: Mar. 23, 2002
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March 2002 launch report (3/23/2002)

Not a bad day for March, either!

On Saturday, March 23, a pretty large group turned out for a morning launch on the snow at Sunrise Park Middle School in White Bear Lake.  At first 4 pads were set up, but that turned into 6 and then 7.  This was almost certainly the biggest winter launch day that MASA has ever had!  The field was snow-covered;  it was packed down hard (made for easy walking but hard landings.)  Flights started around 9 am and ended at 11:30.

On a historical note, this was the first time ever that MASA's March launch was NOT canceled due to bad weather.

A big thanks to: 

  • Alan Estenson & Ted Cochran for gear hauling
  • RSO/LCO volunteers:  Alan Estenson, Ted Cochran, Mark Thell, Ellison Lenz
  • Everyone who helped set up and pack away the equipment

A few of the flights:

The new Estes C11 motors made their first appearance at a MASA launch.  Dave Fergus put a nice first flight on his Shadow Composites Sprint ABM using a C11-3.  Alan Estenson flew the "Red Shirt" on a C11-7; it lost its streamer but survived.  [Red Shirt - Venturing into the frigid sky above a frozen wasteland on an untried propulsion system, no one knew whether this rocket would be seen alive again...]  Alan flew his Estes Fat Boy on a C11-3 with good results.  He also tried a 2-stage flight on an Estes Long Shot from C11-0 to B6-4, but it failed to stage.

Neal Higgins had a successful cluster flight of his Ranger on 3 B6-6's.  Ellison Lenz lit all 3 A8-3's in his "Green Thing", but the nose cone stayed firmly in place and the rocket "snow darted."  Dave Fergus had two successful flights of the "X-File", his rmr Descon X entry.  Jeff Hove had two successful 2-stage flights.  Leland Cheng flew his Estes Mercury Redstone twice on C motors, and his Estes Maxi Honest John once on an Aerotech E15.  It was a nice flight although the rocket got a little dinged-up from landing on the frozen ground.  Ted Cochran had a good flight of his Estes Jayhawk, also on an E15.

Courtesy of Kent Peterson and Leland Cheng, several Quarks & Mosquitoes took flight.  The flight of Dave Lynch's Estes Transwing glider ended with a cry of "Curse you, Red Baron!" when it became entangled.  Sara Downham flew her S2 rocket 3 times on A8-3's.  John Stenberg had two good flights of his "FireBall" on D12-3's.  Derek Lynch flew his Estes Sizzler 3 times.  Collin Dudra flew his Estes Goliath 3 times, too.  Mike Erpelding had an excellent flight of his Estes SR-71 on a C6-5.

On the 2nd-to-last flight of the morning, Glen Overby showed us an impressive example of rocket instability.  Those E9's are heavy, folks!

The Details:

Full launch tally (in Adobe Acrobat PDF form, requires version 4 or newer of the Acrobat reader)

The totals were:  92 flights, 98 motors.  The cumulative total impulse was 737 Ns with an average total impulse of 7.5 Ns.  The motor breakdown follows:

Type

# Burned

MicroMaxx 0

1/4A

2

1/2A

4

A

23

B

27

C

30

D

9

E

3

F

0

G

0

H

0

(Alan Estenson)

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