Goddard Rocket Team Sets World Record

Brazoswood Goddard Rocket Team Sets World Record
Posted on 07/19/2022
This is the image for the news article titled Brazoswood Goddard Rocket Team Sets World RecordBrazoswood High School’s Goddard Rocket Team, led by instructor Chris McLeod, set the new world’s record for High School SRAD (Student Researched and Designed) Hybrid Rockets this past month at the U.S. Army’s White Sand Missile Range in New Mexico. McLeod’s team of 21 students, made up of his Rocketry III class, launched their rocket, HORIZON 1, Altitude from ground level of 45,482 feet, breaking the sound barrier and beating the previous record by 9,382 feet. And this last week, the U.S. Army confirmed that Brazoswood’s HORIZON 1 had broken the world record.

The team worked on the rocket for the past year, collaborating with one another, working through their job assignments of designing, preparing, constructing, testing and assessing issues along the way to build the rocket. There were tremendous hours of research, fuel types had to be discussed and decided upon, the size and shape of the rocket, and weight loads all had to be considered.

But even before the student project team could even consider getting to White Sands, they had to develop an all inclusive comprehensive flight profile using mathematical and engineering skills to present to NASA flight engineers. Following the presentation, and after receiving the NASA feedback, the Research, Development and Demonstration (RD&D) loop was used to plan, design, and construct a rocket that would launch and carry a scientific payload into the atmosphere. And carry, it did!

At White Sands, the Brazoswood team, along with the other high schools, spent the first day setting up their rocket, running tests and covering protocols to prepare for the launch. Finally, Brazoswood’s HORIZON I was set on the launch pad, to wait for the morning to launch.

The following morning, after evaluating the area, the team received the green light to launch the rocket. At about 3 miles away from the launch, the team got to see their HORIZON 1 takeoff. Using the GPS that they had placed on the rocket, the Brazoswood rocket team was able to track their launch, their rate of ascension and how high HORIZON 1 had gone.

All information was validated by the U.S. Army at the White Sands Missile Range a few weeks later, “Brazoswood High School set a new world record for altitude achieved by a student-built, hybrid-motor propelled rocket reaching 45,482 feet above ground level, beating Fredericksburg High School’s record of 36,100 feet and earning the the SystemsGo Kepler Award.”

As for this year’s Brazoswood Rocket team, Mr. McLeod says, “What a moment to remember! Congratulations to Goddard 2022. Mission complete.Brazosport ISD Superintendent Danny Massey stated, “We are so proud of Mr. McLeod and his Rocketry III class! Our Rocketry program is another great example of the quality of education and outstanding learning experiences available for all of our students."

Brazoswood High School utilizes the SystemsGo high school rocketry/aeroscience curriculum to build towards the Goddard Rocket experience. SystemsGo’s goal is “to promote engineering studies and research, develop work-force skills, and encourage students to enter academic and career paths in STEM fields that lead to careers in the engineering industries.”

Thank you to their major contributing sponsors:  BASF, Swagelok, SystemsGo, NASA, Dow, Olin, MMI, And DaVinci.

A celebration for the world record holding Horizon 1 Rocket Team will be held Monday, August 1, 6:00pm, at the Brazoswood High School CTE building.

Brazoswood Goddard Rocket Team Sets World Record - Clute, TX
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