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Skybolt 2 rocket on display at QKA


Today Starchaser Industries Limited visited QKA with one of their rockets !


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Skybolt 2 rocket in the carpark

  • Skybolt 2 is a Sounding Rocket (a research rocket). The term ‘sounding’ is an old nautical expression which means ‘to take measurements’
  • Skybolt 2 stands just under 9 metres (30 feet) tall and the rocket on display here is a prototype
  • It is a decommissioned but an actual (real) rocket which was flown on September 11th 2017
  • The rocket is slightly damaged as there was a problem with 2 of the 3 parachutes upon landing (the rocket has cracks in a couple of places and one of the fins is missing)
  • Max velocity for a Skybolt rocket is 3200mph
    • 3600 mph wuld be 1 mile per second
    • It wuld be like running around a 400m school / Olympic running track 3.5 times in 1 second
  • Max Mach number is 4.8 so almost 5 x the speed of sound
  • Max G-Force would be about 6 G’s of acceleration (so if onboard, you’d feel 6 times your own body weight) most roller coasters pull 3 or 4 G’s
  • Skybolt rockets are reusable and recoverable by parachute
  • This rocket can carry a payload of 20kg and provide up to 4 minutes of weightlessness
  • The body of the rocket is made from carbon fibre (lightweight material used for sports cars)
  • It takes just 5 minutes for the rocket to reach space and 24 minutes for the total flight
  • Max altitude is 83.5 miles (134 KM). Space is defined as 62 miles (100KM). Flight is sub-orbital
  • Skybolt weighs 2.5 tonnes when ready to launch (about the weight of a small elephant)
  • This version of Skybolt was powered by solid rocket motors
  • A flight ready Skybolt costs £180,000 to build and launch