As you're doubtless aware, our shed-built hypobaric rocket motor test rig has proved a bit of a palaver, and the first foray into REHAB ended with both AeroTech and Cesaroni motors failing to ignite.
The probable cause was heat not being transferred from the igniters to the powder charge at the 20mbar test pressure, so we began to mull more effective ways to light LOHAN's fire.
Well, the real thing arrived this morning at the SPB's mountaintop complex, along with "a few other bits and pieces" Rob kindly threw in for us to "play with".
Here's our igniter and pyrotechnic arsenal, which according to a quick search on the interwebs, means we currently have a greater military capability than some small island nations:
- Flying Fish fuse
- Sticky Match
- Visco fuse
- Red Lance
- European igniter
- Chinese igniter
- Plastic Igniter Cord (PIC)
- Custom LOHAN igniter
- Japanese time fuse
We've managed to resist the temptation to storm some Pacific beach as a prelude to establishing our own Tracy Island, and are instead rigging a wire support from the rocket motor casing to the custom igniter to ensure the PIC stays in place.
As soon as that's done, we'll be ready to stick the whole thing in the REHAB chamber for another low-pressure blast.
Before we do, though, we'd like to give a tip of the hat to reader Nick Woodruffe, who also dropped us a line offering his own custom igniter. Nick, who owns Cotswold Fireworks, had been thinking along the same lines as Rob, and believes we are indeed on the right track to light LOHAN's fire.
We shall see, because the moment of pyrotechnic truth is nigh...®
Further LOHAN resources:
- New to LOHAN? Try this mission summary for enlightenment.
- You can find full LOHAN coverage right here.
- Join the expert LOHAN debate down at Reg forums.
- All the LOHAN and Paper Aircraft Released Into Space (PARIS) vids live on YouTube.
- For our SPB photo archive, proceed directly to Flickr.
- We sometimes indulge in light consensual tweeting, as you can see here.