The UBC Rocket team has been very busy over the past few weeks and I wanted to share some updates with you on how some parts of our payload have been progressing! For those who do not know, a payload is anything that the rocket takes up with it that does not directly contribute to the flight functionality, with its purpose depending on the rocket’s mission.
The team that I am working with is Project Ozone, we are building one of three payload projects of UBC Rocket and our focus is on atmospheric pollution mapping. We plan to have our payload deploy from the rocket at its peak altitude and take air quality measurements throughout its descent. This will allow us to map various pollutants in the atmosphere, and locate temperature inversions and boundary layers. The goal of the data is to give us an insight as to what the air quality is like in the area and allow us to determine where pollutants are being trapped in the atmosphere.
We have already made an exciting amount of progress in our design and now have a good idea of what the interior of our payload will look like. Moving on from the design process, we have ordered most of our sensors, reached out to third parties for consultation, and begun finding and making parts to do some prototyping!
This is our current prototype design model. The square frame will have a rotating interior that holds our circuit. This design will be more challenging and add a degree of complexity to our payload. It will also allow us to receive different measurements.
Prototyping is definitely a highlight for me so far – I was very enthusiastic about getting to work with the laser cutter for the first time, and to get some meaningful practice using Solidworks to model parts of our design. It’s been so exciting to get to do hands-on work and to start to see our design come to life! We plan to do more structural and circuit prototyping in the upcoming weeks, with the goal of having our signalling and sensor systems running by the end of December.
Lastly, we would like to thank Dr. Douw Steyn, professor emeritus and Chair of Environmental Science Program at UBC, for his help with our project so far! We are open to any suggestions or advice you may have for regarding our project. Please feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.
-Serena Seraphim (Project Ozone Payloads team)