Meet KTH's Space Engineering Team
Hello and welcome to the first installment of the B2D2 blog. My name is Mathias and I’m the team leader for team B2D2. For those of us wondering who exactly are we, we are a team of engineering students from KTH participating in the REXUS/BEXUS programme. REXUS/BEXUS is a German-Swedish student programme with the B2D2 team participating in the REXUS side of the project. REXUS stands for Rocket EXperiments for University Students and we are designing an experiment to be flown on the REXUS 30 sounding rocket. Along with 3 other student experiments, the rocket would be launched from the Esrange Launch station in Kiruna, Sweden to an altitude of about 80 kms. In the BEXUS part of the programme, experiments will be launched on weather balloons. Compared to REXUS, BEXUS experiments will have a longer flight time. However, they will not reach as high of an altitude and they will not have access to the low gravity conditions that REXUS experiments will experience.
Flight timeline for the experiment
Our experiment will attempt to test a self deployable bi-stable boom in a low gravity environment. The structure of the boom consists of composite tape springs. These can either be rolled into a roll or be extended similar to a measuring tape. If a part of the tape spring is rolled and the rest is extended the tape spring will roll itself out and fully extend. This property causes the boom to extend itself through the energy stored within itself.
Apart from my role as the team leader, I’m also responsible for the different cameras that will film the experiment with the most important ones sitting in our Free Falling Unit (FFU). The FFU carries the experimental boom in addition to the electronics required to run the experiment autonomously. In addition to the FFU cameras, there is also a camera mounted in the Rocket Mounted Unit (RMU). The RMU stays with the rocket and it acts as the link between the rocket and the FFU before ejection at around T+71 seconds. At the moment, a lot of work in the team goes towards completing version 1-1 of the student experiment description. This is the document that will follow us through the whole project. It is a compendium of all aspects of our experiment, beginning with project management and ending with data analysis and results. While the launch of the rocket will be in March 2021, the project will continue until the end of the spring term.
I would like to conclude this first blog post with some information on what will happen on this blog later. Each week one or two of our team members will write about work they have done. You should expect some interesting pictures of parts for the experiments, insights into manufacturing and later some test reports.
T - 12 months