The High Power Rocketry Club (HPRC) is a subcommittee of WPI's chapter of the American Institute of Aeronautics & Astronautics (AIAA) that competes in high power rocketry competitions. This year, we plan to compete in the Intercollegiate Rocketry Engineering Competition (IREC). Previously, our team competed in NASA's University Launch Initiative (USLI). We also take a large portion of our time in the club to educate members through club-run workshops on topics such as rocketry, robotics, manufacturing, computer aided design and much more. If you are a WPI student who is interested in joining the team, please send our executive board an email by clicking here.
The Intercollegiate Rocket Engineering Competition (IREC) is the world's largest university rocket engineering competition held each year as a part of the Spaceport America Cup. College teams compete with rockets built to reach a target altitude of either 10,000 or 30,000 feet and a payload weighing 8.8 pounds. Teams are judged on written technical reports, quality of final design, payload functionality, rocket performance, and presentations to judges while at the competition. For the 2023 competition, our team will be competing in the 10,000 ft COTS category and building a robotic payload.
The team is ready for IREC 2022! Over the second semester of the school year, the team completed all manufacturing work for the mechanical systems and the final versions of the rocket and payload are now assembled. The electronics and programming teams have been hard at work assembling the custom PCBs for the avionics and payload retention systems and are testing the software to go along with it.
In March, the team was lucky enough to launch our 2021 rocket, Sirius, at the St. Albans launch site to test the redesigned recovery system and new ground station for this year’s project. Sirius flew to 5715 ft and the single-end deployment system worked as predicted.
WPI HPRC also hosted the first ever Project Presentation Night in the end of March to share the work completed on our 2022 project, Aquila, with sponsors, staff, and other supporters. Held both virtually and in-person, representatives from each subteam presented on their progress since the beginning of the year and fielded questions from attendees.