Awesome Rockets

Model Rocket Sticks the Landing

Model Rocket Sticks the Landing

One of the big innovations to come out of SpaceX is the Falcon 9 rocket, which can return to earth and land on its tail end, making it much more reusable than other rockets. After years of research, planning, and trial-and-error, Joe Barnard from BPS.space built a model rocket that works much in the same way. (Thanks, Rob!)

Rocket Candy Dispenser

Rocket Candy Dispenser
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3… 2… 1… lift-off! This rocket-shaped candy dispenser helps launch your day into orbit with a candy fix. It holds up to 16 ounces of candies like Skittles, M&Ms, Reese’s Pieces, gumballs, or nuts, and automatically dispenses by the handful using a motion sensor. Runs on 3 AAA batteries.

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Rocket-powered Helicopter Rotor

Rocket-powered Helicopter Rotor

Helicopter rotors are usually propelled by a spinning motor, but Project Air wanted to see if it would be feasible to use a rocket engine to make the blade spin instead. Rather than build a complete helicopter, he built a free-flying monocopter that could fly with a single rocket.

Hypersonic Sled Test

Hypersonic Sled Test

When engineers need to test missile components without launching actual missiles, they test them on a rocket-powered sled. Holloman Air Force Base is home to a test track where they fire hypersonic sleds at speeds up to Mach 8.6 – about 6599 mph. They’ve also figured out how to stop and recover them quickly.

Steampunk Rocket Lamp

Steampunk Rocket Lamp
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Artist Steve Gallagher makes this cool desk lamp that looks like a steampunk rocket ship. Each one is made from a cage light with a glass shade, various bits of pipe, and a wooden base. The deluxe version features a decorative brass finial and looks great with either flicker flame or spiral filament LED bulbs.

Rocketman Goes Full Throttle

Rocketman Goes Full Throttle

Not long ago, Bob “Rocketman” Maddox fired up his Beast Jet Kart – but he only pushed its accelerator pedal down about halfway. This time, he went full throttle, driving the obnoxiously loud go-kart through the desert at about 60 mph. We’re impressed he didn’t drop his selfie stick.

Dragon Jet Kart

Dragon Jet Kart

Robert “Rocketman” Maddox is back with another crazy jet-powered vehicle which he hopes will be his fastest yet. The Dragon Kart 270-pound thrust engine lets out a bellow that’s sure to wake the neighbors. He’s yet to equip it with brakes or a seatbelt, but he still took the thing for a brief ride.

SpaceX Rocket Lamp

SpaceX Rocket Lamp
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This 3D-printed lamp from Vall3DP is based on the design of the SpaceX Starship prototype. It looks just like Elon Musk’s reusable rocket, complete with a fiery illuminated launch plume. It measures 11″ tall and comes with a wooden base that needs to be superglued on after shipment.

ACME Jet Skateboard

ACME Jet Skateboard

The last time we checked in with Bob “Rocketman” Maddox, he was grinning ear-to-ear on his jet-powered go-kart. Now he’s riding an even more dangerous-looking vehicle – a skateboard with a Maddoxjets Cyclone 50 Pulsejet engine strapped to its deck, and barely a place to sit. It tops out around 50 mph, but it might as well be 300.

The Beast Jet Kart

The Beast Jet Kart

Bob “Rocketman” Maddox shows off his totally insane go-kart that’s powered by three valveless jet pulsejet engines. It runs on propane and diesel fuel and has a top speed of 60 mph. It’s so loud through our speakers we can only imagine what it sounds like sitting in the driver’s seat.

Rocket Christmas Tree

Rocket Christmas Tree

You know how you can improve your Christmas tree? Strap a rocket engine to it and launch it into the sky! It’s not quite as easy as that, as Xyla Foxlin, Joe Barnard, and a team of aerospace engineers show us with their insane holiday build. With 1000 newton meters, their tree definitely has more thrust than yours.

Mathmos Saturn Giant Lava Lamp

Mathmos Saturn Giant Lava Lamp

The classic lava lamp finally gets the rocketship makeover it deserves. Created by lava lamp originators Mathmos, the Saturn Giant floor lamp measures 5 feet tall and stands on a trio of shiny aluminum legs. Each one is handmade in the UK and can be ordered in one of 10 lava color combinations.

SpinLaunch Centrifugal Rocket Launcher

SpinLaunch Centrifugal Rocket Launcher

Aerospace company SpinLaunch wants to launch rockets without rocket fuel. Their system uses an electric centrifuge to fling rockets up to 5000 mph. They plan to use the tech to put small satellites into low-earth orbit with less environmental impact and cost than current methods. On 10.22.21, they completed a suborbital test.

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Matchstick UFO

Matchstick UFO

The S loves to build all kinds of things out of matchsticks, then light them on fire. In this clip, he built a cardboard model of a disc-shaped UFO, filled it up with 25,000 of the incendiary devices, then set them ablaze with awesome results. The spinning part of the lift-off was a nice touch.

3D Printing Rockets

3D Printing Rockets

Building full-size rockets typically requires the creation of costly custom tooling. But Relativity Space is taking a different approach to the problem, using a giant 3D printer and additive manufacturing to melt and form aluminum into the shape of a rocket. Veritasium takes us inside of their facility for a look at how it works.

Fire Ignition Rocket PC

Fire Ignition Rocket PC

We’ve seen some pretty rad computer cases over the years. Handy Geng might have just jumped to the top of the list with his retro rocket metal case. It looks amazing – especially the smoke machine and fire effect lighting that’s triggered with actual fire.

Moon Walk Eraser Set

Moon Walk Eraser Set
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Blast off every time you sit down to doodle with this astronaut and rocket eraser set from Suck UK. The package includes a monochrome astronaut holding onto a silver pencil while on a spacewalk from their bright red rocketship — a great little gift for anyone into space exploration.

Rocket Engine Test

Rocket Engine Test

(LOUD) Enjoy some rocketry goodness as Japan’s Interstellar Technologies, shows off a static test of one of their rockets. The ethanol/LOX-powered engine cranks out 12 Kilonewtons of thrust, which sounds like a lot until you realize the Space Shuttle’s solid rocket boosters produced more than 25,000 Kilonewtons of thrust.

Fun with Baking Soda Rockets

Fun with Baking Soda Rockets

Combining vinegar and baking soda inside a soda bottle creates an explosive amount of pressure – enough to launch the bottle sky high. Nick Uhas wanted to see not only how far he could make a soda bottle fly horizontally using this method, but also what would happen if he super-sized the experiment using a 5-gallon water jug.

SpaceX Launch + Landing POV

SpaceX Launch + Landing POV

SpaceX shared this sped-up footage of its Falcon 9 rocket as it took its SAOCOM 1B satellite payload into polar orbit, then returned its first stage safely to Earth. It’s worth watching if only for the rhythmic sounds that the thrusters make as they pulse on and off.

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Launching a Rocket Underwater

Launching a Rocket Underwater

Warped Perception enjoys seeing how things look in slow-motion. He recently got the idea to launch a model rocket from inside of an aquarium, letting us see how it behaves both in and out of the water. We love the way its exhaust plume changes as it breaks the surface of the water.

Nominal Rocket Pen

Nominal Rocket Pen

Nominal is a unique pen with a design inspired by the retractable legs on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. Each pen is made from 34 individual components, and is available in aluminum or stainless steel. A magnetic “crew cabin” slides off to reveal a black mother of pearl end cap, which can be monogrammed for a small fee.

SpaceX Rocket Hop

SpaceX Rocket Hop

Among its projects, SpaceX is working on Starship, a rocket which may someday help colonize Mars. In this test of Starship’s can-shaped SN5 test vehicle, the rocket launched from one pad, hovered at 500 feet, then landed on another, a process which could allow for quick exploration of distant sites across the red planet.

How Not to Launch a Rocket

How Not to Launch a Rocket

Launching rockets – even small ones – requires lots of precision math, engineering smarts, and attention to detail. So we appreciate this clip from BPS.space which shows off some of the many ways in which they screwed up, not the least of which being those first few launches in populous locations.

If Rockets Were Transparent

If Rockets Were Transparent

We used to play with those see-through water-powered rockets. Now, Haze Gray Art envisions what the Saturn V, Space Shuttle, Falcon Heavy, and the Space Launch System might look like if you could see inside of their fuel tanks during lift-off. The red is RP-1 kerosene, the orange is liquid hydrogen, and the blue is liquid oxygen.

Bottle Rocket Shock Diamonds

Bottle Rocket Shock Diamonds

Using an ultra high-speed camera and Schlieren imaging, scientists from RMIT University captured incredible footage of the jet bursting forth from a pressurized plastic soda bottle. The shapes that emerge are called “shock diamonds,” which occur due to pressure differences between exhaust and the surrounding air.

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