WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. (WVEC) -- After several days of iffy weather and aborted attempts, a Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket successfully launched from Wallops Island on Sunday morning.
The payload: student projects from four universities.
The sounding rocket was previously scheduled to launch earlier in the week, but each morning, various weather conditions prevented the rocket from taking off.
Not so on Sunday, as the rocket took to the skies shortly before 7 a.m.
The undergraduate projects on board included propulsion systems for small spacecraft, a new wire insulation material, a small reentry spacecraft, and a deployable boom and solar blanket for small satellites, according to a press release.
“The four universities were selected in 2016 to participate in the NASA Undergraduate Student Instrument Project or USIP. The teams are not only exploring projects that may impact future spaceflight, but they are getting invaluable experience that will propel them into their future careers,” said Joyce Winterton, Wallops' senior advisor for education and leadership development.
The universities are Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne; University of Kentucky, Lexington; Utah State University, Logan; and Univeristy of Nebraska, Lincoln.
The 43-foot-tall rocket flew to an altitude of about 100 miles.
Following the flight, the experiments were expected to descend by parachute and land in the Atlantic Ocean, about 70 miles from Wallops Island. They will be recovered and returned to the students later in the day, the release stated.
Smartphone users can download the “What’s Up at Wallops” app for information on the launch as well as a compass showing the precise direction for launch viewing.
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