Well, what a last few months it has been. If you had told us about the state that the world and the country would be in now 5 months ago we would never have believed you. First of all I would like to apologise for our rather longer than anticipated absence from the blog and our other social media accounts. I promise, we have been working behind the scenes the whole time but have been struggling to find material that we felt was worthy of sharing with you all. With it being 2021 now, I have made a personal resolution to work harder to keep updating our platforms with our progress because I know there are people out there who would find it beneficial, now more than ever, to see how we have tried to approach and overcome all of the problems that 2020 had thrown at us. I hope this post will serve to fill the gap of the last few months and catch you all up to date on what we have been up to.
The first big bit of very exciting news is that our SAC team were successful in their application to take part in the 2021 Spaceport America Cup Competition! Woohoooo! 🙌 Firstly, a massive thank you to all our team members who have been putting their own time and effort into making sure our application was as professional and organised as it could be. Now the real hard work begins.
We had a meeting last week to loosely throw out some plans and ideas for how we want to progress moving towards the competition date of June 22. We now have a full 3D model of the rocket and its components, our next steps will be to effectively make a shopping list of all of the parts we wish to purchase and begin more detailed budgeting plans to make sure we can afford all of our constituent parts.
With regards to funding, we are looking at expanding our investors. We are hoping to send out more marketing emails in the next couple of weeks but we are aware that given the global economic situation at the moment we would be incredibly lucky to receive any more funding no matter how small. That being said, if I can be cheeky and say, if anyone reading this would love to be involved in our project and help us out with funding, or knows of someone or a company that might be interested please get in touch with us!
With regards to manufacturing the rocket, given the current UK government restrictions on gatherings we are currently planning to delegate the building of individual components of the rocket to a few individuals in our group. We will then organise group calls with the separate teams to provide virtual assistance to the building of the components.
It is unlikely that we will be able to test the rocket in its entirety before the actual competition date. So we are currently operating on the principle that we will get the individual components working separately with the aim that if needs be we can just bring all the components together in America and pray that they work as one unit!
This being said, we are incredibly grateful to have reached even this point in our journey. The fact that we will be able to be physically present at the competition in America is all we could have wished for especially in these unprecedented times. So, if our rocket doesn't work or explodes without even getting off the ground that's absolutely fine! When we established this group it was about getting people with shared interests together to work on creating something. Obviously we want it to work but given the amount of new and interesting situations we have overcome to get to this point the fact we will have something to show for it is all we could have ever asked for.
We want this group to outlast our individual time at university. Therefore, we see our first entry into the Spaceport America Cup as the first stepping stone on this groups much longer and prosperous lifetime! (By saying this we are effectively giving ourselves a get out of jail card, because if our rocket is an utter failure we hope it will inspire others to improve upon our work and take the group to newer heights!- little rocket pun for you there)
In all seriousness though, we would like to take a minute to encourage anyone thinking of starting their own projects like this to take that first leap. For instance, earlier today we met with some students from Leeds University who are hoping to start up their own Rocketry society and enter the cup in 2022, it's always incredible to meet with people as ambitious and enthusiastic as us and we wish them all the best and hope that in the near future we can begin collaborations with them!
We would love it if you were to take us and Leeds as inspiration to get involved in projects near you - maybe even start your own - because, even in spite of end of world scenarios that might throw themselves at you - like, I don't know a global pandemic for example - to make new friends and create something together is one of the most rewarding things you could ever hope to achieve not just in your education but in your life!