Honeywell Rocket Team

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The Honeywell Rocket Team is a team within Cyclone Rocketry whose primary objective is to fulfill an acquired contract with Honeywell to design and manufacture two rockets launching their payloads. This rocket will fulfill a set of Honeywell provided requirements, launch the payloads within a given flight performance envelope, and subject the payload to real-world launch loads. The rocket design follows common HPR practices and consists of mainly COTS components to reduce cost, decrease manufacturing time, and mitigate risk. These rockets will each be launched twice in the summer of 2021. There is potential for this team to acquire future contracts with a more complex set of requirements – if successful, this year’s project will serve as a baseline for those.

Recovery Update

This year the team plans to go with a reef parachute system replacing the drogue and main parachute system of previous years. The reefing device will be a tubular solenoid that will be retracted when activated by other electronics such as an altimeter and light sensor. The device will be located in a pouch on the parachute skirt.

The team will go with the cruciform parachute design this build cycle which a smaller scale version was recently tested in a wind tunnel.

Propulsion Update

After having a successful small scale test in December 2019, the team started working on a 98mm midscale motor, which was manufactured in September 2020. To test the midscale motor a new key site was needed and the team is working on obtaining a shipping container that provides housing for the test stand.

The team plans to continue research and development in areas such as nozzle manufacturing, 3D geometries, and vacuum processing.

Payload Update

The payload for this build cycle as in previous years will be in a CubeSat form. It consists of an onboard experiment as well as a system to guide the payload by steering its parafoil. This is done by having the parafoil cord wrapped around a control wheel powered by a servo.

The onboard experiments mission to harvest energy from the payloads turbulent flight. The piezoelectric effect generates an electric charge from mechanical stress.

Mechanical Update

The team is working on a ground verification project to let the onboard system know when the rocket is off the ground to start recording telemetry. The design sits inside the camera bay. The force of the launch dislodged a metal ball which falls and hits a button sending a signal the rocket has launched.


The team is working on a Roll Stabilization SRAD project, which will not be implemented on Renegade. The purpose would be to prevent a high role rate, increase rocket performance, and allow more sensitive experiments to be launched.

Avionics Update

One new addition to the hardware system this build cycle is a separate and modular power management unit. This will allow for easier revisions and repairs and decrease the amount of space taken. The controller for this year will be powered by the Teensy 4.0 which has a dual-issue superscalar which means you can run two instructions at the same time.

The team is looking to improve on the ground station by including a monitor screen. As in previous years, the ground station receives real-time data from telemetry and will contain a Raspberry Pi to facilitate communication and visualize data.

Aerostructures Update

This year’s Renegade HPR will have two main body tubes with a 32 inch Von Karman shape nose cone in previous years. The fines are clipped delta shape and easily replaceable if a fin happens to be damaged.


The team has a research project focused on building an SRAD PrePreg Autoclave. 

January 2020 Shop Talk

Second semester has kicked off in Ames, meaning it’s time to build! Designs for our next rocket are being finalized and components are beginning to be manufactured. The name of this year’s rocket is Ortu Solis, meaning “rising sun”. Learn more about what out team is up to in this month’s “Shop Talk”.