☷Space Engineering and Research Rocket
U.S. Army ( By Press Release office)
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U . S . Military Academy ( USMA ) Space Engineering and Research Rocket Program cadets pose before launch of their two - staged rocket March 26 , 2022 at West Point . The team is currently racing to be the first undergraduate group to reach the Karman Line . ) U . S . Military Academy Space Engineering and Research Rocket Program cadets setup a two - staged rocket March 26 , 2022 at West Point . The cadets goal was to reach the Karman Line ( 100km in altitude ) . ) U . S . Military Academy ( USMA ) Space Engineering and Research Rocket Program cadets prepare two - staged rocket for launch April 18 , 2022 at Spaceport America , New Mexico . This rocket design broke the previous 2018 USMA record for distance travel . ) U . S . Military Academy student - led Space Engineering and Research Rocket Program launch a two - staged rocket April 18 , 2022 at Spaceport America , New Mexico . The rocket traveled at nearly 4000 mph and reached a max altitude of 90km . ) West Point , N . Y . – On April 18th , the student - led Space Engineering and Research Rocket ( SPEAR ) program showcased a two - staged solid rocket , which traveled 5 . 2 times the speed of light ( nearly 4000 mph ) reaching 90km above sea level , at Spaceport America , New Mexico . “Our work is important for the Army because it is a future means to quickly reconstitute destroyed satellites in the event of conflict , ” said the United States Military Academy ( USMA ) Class of 2022 Cadet Lakin West , a Mechanical Engineering major at USMA . The rocket design is set to become a reliable and cheap - sounding rocket for future research in the upper atmosphere . The team was 10km short of the internationally recognized boundary between the Earth’s atmosphere and space . This boundary is also known as the Karman Line ( 100km in altitude ) . According to the SPEAR hypersonic rocket team ( HRT ) , this was the farthest and fastest the team has traveled since 2018 . “Additionally , our work can serve as a test platform for improving the Army’s hypersonic launch vehicle capabilities in the air and space domains , ” West said . The SPEAR - HRT has the potential to become a hypersonic testbed to support DoD research activities . Funding for hypersonic research increased by 740% between 2015 and 2020 . According to the Government Accountability Office , the latest defense budget alone increased funding by 20% . “Launching and recovering a rocket requires multidisciplinary collaboration , ” said Department of Civil and Mechanical Engineering ( CME ) Instructor Capt . Jacob Reddington . The cross - disciplinary SPEAR - HRT consists of four Mechanical Engineering cadets , an Electrical Engineering and Computer Science ( EECS ) cadet and advisors from various departments . “CME cadets design and build it according to customer requirements; EECS cadets make it smart enough to track and faculty and industry partners coordinate a cooldown , ” Reddington said . “SPEAR has provided this team with the opportunity to work with people and organizations that have unexpectedly high expectations for a bunch of undergraduate students , and I believe we all became better leaders as a result , ” said Class of 2022 Cadet Easton Bolin . “As the project manager , I got to lead a handful of extremely competent cadets and mechanical engineers , coordinate with other government agencies , private contractors and constantly make decisions that could make or break our mission . ” West Point ' s 23rd annual Projects Day will showcase more than 400 research projects by over 1 , 000 cadets! We welcome and celebrate the over 80 external partners and West Point faculty who contributed to these cadet - led projects . Follow along by signing up for the Projects Day App and learn more about the Academics at West Point . About West Point The U . S . Military Academy at West Point is a four - year , co - educational , federal , liberal arts college located 50 miles north of New York City . It was founded in 1802 as America ' s first college of engineering and continues today as the world’s premier leader - development institution , consistently ranked among top colleges in the country . Its mission remains constant—to educate , train , and inspire the Corps of Cadets so that each graduate is a commissioned leader of character committed to the values of Duty , Honor , Country and prepared for a career of professional excellence and service to the nation as an officer in the U . S . Army . For more information about the academy , go to www . westpoint . edu .
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