Erick Agrimson · SM 20
Model Rocket Engines
Model Rocket engines have provided students at St. Catherine University the opportunity to review concepts about impulse, energy and kinematics. In what is now fondly called ‘the rocket lab’ students build a rocket at the end of one lab session and then proceed to launch and calculate the altitude the model reaches theoretically using impulse and conservation of energy. Students are then able to experimentally measure the altitude using trigonometry and from an altitude box attached to the nose cone. The lab allows for discussion related to sizing i.e. ½ A vs A in terms of the impulse delivered by the engine. We are also able to talk about how the changing mass generates the thrust needed to propel the rocket skywards. Our students have found this lab to be an effective way to learn these topics in their courses.