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FalconLaunch 6 Preparation

FalconLaunch is the name of a small sounding rocket development program at the United States Air Force Academy. The program falls beneath the purview of the Academy Department of Astronautics. The program has two basic purposes: first, to educate cadets in the practice of space systems engineering; and two, to produce a sounding rocket each year. The original technological goal of the program was to develop a light (~100 lb) sounding rocket capable of delivering a small (~5 lb) payload to the edge of space (~100 km). Senior-level cadets handle most aspects of the program.

This program is similar in concept to another USAFA Astronautics program, FalconSAT.


2002-2003: FalconLaunch-1

2003-2004: FalconLaunch-2

2004-2005: FalconLaunch-3

2005-2006: FalconLaunch-4

2006-2007: FalconLaunch-5

2007-2008: FalconLaunch-6 - Exploded during test firing on 4 November 2009.[1]

2008-2009: FalconLaunch-7 - Test launched from the White Sands Missile Range in April 2009. It successfully delivered its payload section to an altitude of 354,724 feet, setting a world altitude record for university-built rockets.[1]

2009-2010: FalconLaunch-8 - Scheduled for test launch in April 2010.[1]