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World's Largest Amateur Rocket Prepares For Second Attempt 76

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-can-see-my-house-from-here dept.
Plammox writes "Last year, non-profit, volunteer-based Copenhagen Suborbitals failed at launching what they call the world's largest amateur rocket, because of a frozen LOX-valve. This year, the sea launch platform 'Sputnik' has become self-propelled, eliminating the need for their home-built submarine(!). Sputnik is on its way into the Baltic Sea right now and a launch attempt is expected on Friday. However, one of the founders warns that even if ignition should occur, it might very well look like this."
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World's Largest Amateur Rocket Prepares For Second Attempt

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  • AIS tracking (Score:5, Informative)

    by Plammox (717738) on Tuesday May 31, 2011 @10:06AM (#36296378)
    If you want to follow them live on the map, go to marinetraffic.com [marinetraffic.com] and type in "sputnik" as vessel. It should appear as "Sputnik" [DK] Cargo.

    PS: The launch is dependent on local weather conditions, but they hope to make an attempt on Friday. In the mean time, they're based in the port of Nexø on the island of Bornholm (dubbed "Spaceport Nexø" or SPN by the crew).
  • by Plammox (717738) on Tuesday May 31, 2011 @10:57AM (#36296978)
    They are doing this based on donations and voluntary work. Building a sea launch catamaran and putting two marine diesels in it is cheaper than you think....provided you can weld, bend and paint it yourself...and you know a guy with a mobile crane. Also, according to the tests they conducted, the yaw, pitch and roll experienced under favourable weather conditions is acceptable for a launch. This area of Europe is so densely populated that it would be a logistical and safety nightmare to launch it on land, let alone getting the whole thing authorized. 12 naval miles off the coast, you don't have these restrictions (other than having the army/ministry of defense approve a sea launch, which seems to be significantly easier.... military personnel seems to be significantly less scared of rockets. They are probably rooting for them right now. :-)

    So the team had to make a trade-off, and sea launch is what they decided on. I understand them, building a floating launchpad is more fun than red-tape battling the bureaucrats :-)

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