Meeting #325

Attending: Dan S.,
Michael W.,
Gerald N.,
Julie P.,
Dave W.,
Alex M.,
Call to order:

8:05 pm, 13 Mar 2008

Discussions started early about setting a short term (i.e. one year) goal for the group. Among the items put forward were:

  • Refly K.I.S.S.
  • Finish peroxide production facility
  • Get a written inventory of the club assets (lockers, Ranch, various people’s homes)
  • actually build the blockhouse needed at the Ranch

Ranch Report:
Dave W arrived about then and was able to give an update on the Ranch.

  • DHS has registered the Ranch as “a site of interest”
    • this mean a bit more paperwork
    • we were going to inventory the HTP anyway
  • Dan suggested getting new polyurethane bottles for the HTP
  • It was suggested we check with Mike Carden about the long term durability of the containers.
  • The HTP that had been in the Chart Recorder room was moved a while back
  • Pierce’s equipment has probably been removed

The mechanical arm has been moved to Dave W.’s storage locker. The locker also contains the sparging an freeze wheel equipment, the K.I.S.S. ground support equipment (including the 5000 psi hose and the cables), the POGO hardware and frame, the (6?) hemispherical tank parts, electronics and Aluminum bits for the Data Acquisition System, the yellow Oxy tank, the 1 gallon Swaglok tank, various test stand control systems but likely not the GizmoCopter parts (which may be with Sean L.).

Dan said he had the K.I.S.S. rocket and engine, 10-12 of the POGO 30 lb thrust engines, one of Kevin B.’s 50 lb thrust engines, various RC servo motors and a carbon composite weave tube.

It was mentioned that Bojo has the high pressure N2 tanks that used to be at the shop, but that because of some careless swapping by folks now in Mojave, one may be a Praxair tank. We’ll have to exchange it for our old customer tank at some point.

The Ranch should have the Honda generator, the Big generator and various drums of H2O2 in unknown quantity and concentration. Plans were proposed to gout to the Ranch this Sunday to do a proper assay of them.

Dave W. mentioned that he now has a TechShop membership. He said that small project storage was available on-site for $5 – $30 per month depending on size (up to 4′ x 7′). The have a 12″ radial lathe that could be very useful. He also mentioned that they have a “group plan” that allows 3 people (but only 2 at a time) to use the shop for $150/month (vs. $100/mo per person).

Projects This Year:
Various projects that we could accomplish this year were suggested and discussed. They include:

  1. Flying K.I.S.S.
    This was questioned as to how redoing what we’d done before was any advancement. While re-flying the ill-fated KISS III full load flight was brought up there was more opposition than support for the idea.

  2. Build and test Biprop engines
    Both Dan S. and Dave W. have proposals in the works for bi propellent engine designs and there was much discussion about merits and approaches. The consensus seemed to be to build at least one (and likely more) design, quantify various catalyst performances, and then add various fuels and compare recorded performances.

  3. Characterize several catalyst options
    It was pointed out that one of the shortfalls of our previous efforts was that we never got reliable performance data on the cermet catalyst and we never did a proper study of catalyst pack depth optimization. This is actually very valuable and useful data to have and a project of standardized tests that looked at the performance effects of differing catalyst pack depths for several different types of catalyst was seen as a Good Thingtm to do … provided we could find propellent. By preparing several depths each of several catalysts in the POGO 30 lb engines, a good amount of testing could be done in an afternoon.

In the end, it was decided the official goal will be “to fire an engine before the rains“. It was also agreed that “getting accurate data from engine firings is the highest priority” because this would be the basic data against which different catalysts can be evaluated and various bi-prop combinations can be tested.

Action Items:

  • We need to locate the load cells. Dan thinks they may be somewhere in the storage locker.
  • Michael needs to finish the State paperwork.
  • It was mentioned that X-L Space Systems is back in business.
  • Dan is requesting the group buy a copy of RockSim to be used for vehicle design work.

Adjourned: 9:43 pm

General Meeting #325