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Here are the latest happenings at JPA              

7/28/2005

Here's a blast from the past, (or at least a crash from the past).  This was a rocket mission flown about nine years ago,
the Twin Dilemma.   Over the years there have been many ups and downs.  This mission was both.

7/26/2005

God speed Discovery.

7/25/2005

Work on Away 28 continues:

Paul and Kevin did the composite work on the upper deck.  This foam, fiberglass and
carbon fiber triangle gives support the roller mount. (see pic under 7/17/2005)

Flight Computer upgrade:

One of our sponsors Parallax generously donated some of their new upgraded pic computers, the Basic Stamp 2px24
and the Basic Stamp 2pe.  The team lost no time in starting to integrating the new units into controllers and data logging
systems.    The faster processing speeds and more memory will come in handy.

7/21/2005

A truss for what????


Is this carbon truss structure for the keel of the next Ascender, or is it a part of the Dark Sky Station? Or maybe it's
for an Away mission.  It's all these things.  Before it's retired it will have flown in several incarnations.  The concept of
"Common Architecture", runs through all our work.   With a project this complex with as many vehicles involved
"Common Architecture" becomes the key to success.   This is why Dark Sky Station arms look like Ascenders and rocket
controllers can be found on Away missions as backup balloon release systems. 

Of course, there is a trade off between multi function vs. optimum function.  However, we have found the benefits of being
able to produce experimental vehicles from our own off the shelf components is incredible.   I can fly a radical, weird, cutting
edge vehicles to the edge of space that has at it's core parts and structures that are solid veterans of many mission. 
Components with known characteristics.  Components I can optimumize the manufacturing of because  I'll use a bunch of them.

How many parts from one vehicle can you recognize from another?

Model update


Ready for paint!

We've added the art of Dave Archer to the Art of JP Aerospace page.

7/18/2005

Two new pages have been added.  Really one new page and one old page.  The new page is the Art of JP Aerospace!
This page features artistic creations people have made showing JPA vehicles.  The other new/old page is a photo
series of a mission we flew in 2000, Away 5.

7/17/2005

The team was really hoppin  this Saturday.   They kept at it for over twelve hours in spite of the 100 degree
Sacramento heat.  We welcomed new team member John to our ranks and he did a great job cutting foam rings
and helping out with Away 28 roller system.

 
We've been experimenting with several configurations for Away 28.  The latest version (above),  shows enough
promise to proceed with building a flight version.  One of the difference between the prototype and the flight article
is the use of a light carbon fiber roller instead of a cardboard one.  We've also begun to narrow down the
candidates for the roller control mechanism. Next will be the balloon guides, video monitoring system, and avionics. 
This Away rack will get several test flights to 500 feet on a tether before we send it all the way up.


Carbon Fiber flight roller (fourteen inches in diameter).

Electronics work never ends.   Sometimes it's a major upgrade and other time it adjusting, poking and tweaking.

 
Bob GPS Whisperer. 

7/12/2005

Sometimes the old ways are the best, (or you know your tired when...)
I just had a odd math moment I wanted to share.  I am roughing out some components.  I needed to do some
trig so I get out my trusty slide rule (yes, some people just can't let go).  To my horror the number I got just
couldn't be right.   Have I forgotten how to use the thing?  Have the numbers slid around while I wasn't looking?
I immediately zip over to my favorite math calculator web site and ...... disaster, It's down!  OK, take a deep
breath.  I open up the windows calculator, (ick), and work the problem in a completely different manor to get an
approximate.  The number is looks about right.   Time to backtrack.  After much digging and searching it was
discovered that an error was made in an initial hard measurement of a physical item, (in the real world).

The slide rule was, of course, correct.  When I'm standing on Mars it will be in my pocket just in case.

7/11/2005

Sponsors make the flights possible.  Finding and working with new sponsors is one of my on going tasks.
This week we've been talking to anyone and everyone who is looking for something a little different in their advertising.
Calling and selling is not my best bit.  However, it's a lot more fun than is sounds.   How often do you get the chance
to call a professional business person and say: "Do you want to buy a spaceship?". ? 

7/06/2005

Space Education in Action!
If you want to see a real space accomplishment, check this out:

http://www.parallax.com/html_pages/resources/custapps/app_pongsat.asp
This PongSat flew on our last mission, Away 26.

Model Update

The new nose and tails have been covered in fiberglass and sanded. 
Time for putty, sand, prime, repeat...

Airframe Mandrel


A tremendous amount of labor went into the getting the airframe mandrel ready.  The team buffed, polished
and waxed till their arms just about fell off.  The mandrel is used to make the airframe of the ML rocket.

May-June what's new page.

March-April what's new page.

Februarys what's new page.

Januarys what's new page.

  Back to the JPA home page.


This page was last edited on August 13, 2005
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