Advanced Three-Stage Rocket

The Advanced Three-Stage Rocket team, led by Brian Beitler ’18 and Maxim Baranov ’18, will design, construct, launch, and recover a high-power three-stage rocket. The main advantage of a multistage rocket design is an ability to shed excess weight as it ascends, allowing for greater velocities and altitudes than a single stage rocket with the same amount of fuel. Each stage acts as its own self-contained rocket system with fuel, oxidizer, and a rocket nozzle, and all the stages prior to the final one carry everything above them in the rocket stack as their payload. Once the fuel in the first, or bottom, stage runs out, it separates to parachute down to the ground, and the stage above it ignites to continue carrying the rocket upward. This process repeats until the top stage runs out of fuel, either delivering a payload to orbit or releasing a parachute at apogee (maximum altitude, when the rocket turns around and begins falling) and descending to the ground.