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Last updated: Feb 6, 2006
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February 2006 Meeting Minutes (2/6/2006)

The February 2006 MASA meeting was held at the Minnesota Science Museum in St. Paul. Eleven people turned out for the meeting.

There was some initial discussion that included:

  • Kimball TARC team is now starting to design their TARC rocket.

  • SW middle school (Albert Lea) TARC team has launched a practice rocket.

  • The F21 motor is TRA certified but on "production hold".

  • MARSCON [Science Fiction convention] is first week of March. MASA will have a booth and one general pass to the convention.

  • NARCON is the second week of March. Primary guests are Lee Piester (Centuri) and Matt Steele (NCR).

  • It appears that the MASA meatball design won the badge competition for 2006.

  • MASA will have some TARC launches in the future as the TARC deadline nears (not surprising).

  • Buzz McDermott has a brochure from Bellville Discount Hobby to get all the discontinued Estes stuff at a 40% discount.  Buzz wanted to do a group order. If interested, call Buzz soon!

Ted Cochran then gave his safety talk which is also his NARCON talk, entitled "Safety in Sport Rocketry". The talk was a result of NAR trying to improve the safety of sport rocketry. The impetus for this was a number of "close calls" that occurred last year around the country. Ted had a number of pictures (some very cool) and videos of rocket disasters.
Ted also presented a statistical study of model rocket launches (based on MASA's flight cards) in an attempt to evaluate the dangers of sport rocketry. The dangers included rocketeers trying to recover a rocket from power lines as well as getting struck by a rocket.
Based on the statistical study, NAR came up with some minor modifications to the safety code as well as some best practices.  Best practice is to always have spectators, prep areas and cars at cross-wind to the launch area. Almost all rockets land upwind or downwind from the launch area. Having spectators and others off to the side of the wind direction will reduce the chances of someone or something getting hit.

(David Whitaker)

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