The weather for the October launch was near perfect, with temps in the mid-80s, blue skies, and winds mostly light and variable throughout the morning. Turnout was a little better than the September launch, with 93 total flights, including 19 High-Power flights and 74 hobby and mid-power. One D-Engine cluster was flown, accounting for 2 engines in the "D" class.
One High Power launch almost became a "Land Shark" when for unknown reasons it decided to take off horizontally, at a very low altitude, and in the general direction of the parking area. No damage or injuries resulted, except to the rocket, which came to earth Southeast of the parking area.
Rocketeers can now check out the waether condions at the launch site before heading out for our events! Just head to the SARA Web site at sararocketry.org and click on the Weather link under the Launch Info menu item.
The new weather station is the result of a joint project between SARA and TIMPA to utilize a newly installed Internet service in the "hangar". The Davis Vantage Pro2 hardware was donated by a local company, with the clubs picking up the cost of the software and installation.
Night launches of hobby rockets are something special. They require special permission from the FAA. They launch special rockets that are equipped with bright lights. And they are successful when special rocketeers build these special birds and let them take flight.
The Southern Arizona Rocketry Association (SARA) may well have the most active night launch community in all of rocketry. At regional launches, such as Plaster Blaster in Plaster City, California, SARA members dominate the night launch. The SARA night launch on October 8 saw a whopping 50 flights, with 11 of them on high power motors!
In response to comments about model rocket impulse class motors requiring high power certification I offer the following information from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). NFPA document 1125 "Code for the Manufacture of Model Rocket and High Power Rocket Motors" defines both model and high power rocket motors. The current edition is the recently released 2012 edition.
The weather for the September launch was gorgeous, with temperatures tending more toward warm than hot, and a light breeze from the south drifting the rockets into the TIMPA land just north of our launch site. The new PA system, partially funded by a grant from NAR, made sure that everyone could clearly hear the Launch Control Officer (LCO).
It was a great day of flying, with 80 launches burning 81 motors; the lone two-stage flight was an unusual combination of a D booster staging to an E sustainer. As with the August launch, high power G motors made an appearance, in this case a Cesaroni G106-11.
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