June 2022 Virtual Meeting

by Dave Nordling, President, Reaction Research Society


The Reaction Research Society held its monthly meeting by teleconference on June 10, 2022. The meeting covered several recent topics and we welcomed new member, Rushd Julfiker.:

We discussed the two recent events at the RRS MTA. Firing reports have been posted for each.

5/21: YMCA student launch event

6/4: UCLA Senior Capstone project launches

The society has had a few groups interested in using the MTA in the next month. Formal requests to use the MTA must be sent by email to the RRS president with specific dates requested.

Wilbur Owens’ loader in action on 5/21/2022 at the RRS MTA.

Dimitri Timohovich and Osvaldo Tarditti went to the MTA on Sunday, 6/5/22 to disassemble and examine the condition of the loader used at the MTA and owned by member, Wilbur Owens. The hydraulic cylinders will require a complete rebuild to return the machine to working order. The backhoe and loader has been a very useful asset to the society and as such the repairs will be paid by the society. Our security cameras are working well to monitor the site in our absence.

The 40th annual Large and Dangerous Rocket Ships (LDRS40) event by the Tripoli Rocketry Association is being hosted by the Rocketry Organization of California (ROC) in Lucerne Valley this weekend. Some of the RRS will be attending. it is an excellent event that brings many groups together and this year it is back in southern California.

lrds40.org

Progress is being made on the new restroom facility. The septic system and leach field will go in soon. Dimitri provided updates on the container interior which should be finished by month’s end. The next step will be adding the roof platform and water tanks followed by completing the electrical systems.

Site maintenance and upgrades were discussed for projects after the new restroom facility is complete including more water storage and fire suppression gear. We could also use some metal cabinets and industrial shelving to better organize the contents of our new 40-foot storage container.

We have had a persistent problem with nails and metal debris puncturing tires at the MTA. One solution to this problem is a magentic sweeper which can pull up and remove any iron pieces left in the shallow layers of sand and dust.

Magnetic sweepers make picking up nails, bolts and other iron debris simple.

The society has bought two of these devices. With some dedicated and coordinated efforts, our site can be cleaned of this hazard. We will be asking our membership to spend some time sweeping the MTA, collecting the findings and disposing of them in the burn pit.

The north pad (foreground) by the Dosa Building is a convenient spot for loading and unloading.

The society has bought a new 1-ton gantry crane, trolley and chain hoist. This equipment will be useful in loading and unloaiding heavy materials on and off pickup trucks. Items such as cryogenic liquid cylinders would benefit from having a simple means of lifting them on and off with no power source required. The gantry crane will have the wheels removed and will be permanently mounted to a fixed foundation at the north pad by the Dosa Building.

An example of a gantry crane, trolley and chain hoist lfiting a heavy article on or off a pickup truck.

After some consideration, the executive council decided it would be best to postpone the next RRS Symposium until the spring of 2023. It takes a significant amount of preparation and we felt it best to wait to begin in the new year when we will celebrate our 80th anniversary. Before the pandemic, we had three increasingly successful annual events and we look forward to restarting them soon.

Next meeting will be July 8th as they happen on every 2nd Friday of the month. Our meetings will remain by teleconference but we are checking with the Ken Nakaoka Community Center about returning to in-person meetings soon. We will continue to have the teleconference feature even after we return to in-person meetings.

To attend our meetings, contact the RRS secretary.

secretary@rrs.org


MTA firing report, 2022-03-12

by Dave Nordling, President, Reaction Research Society


The Reaction Research Society held a members only event on March 12th. I was the pyrotechnic operator in charge, We used the event to make some facility changes, launch a set of model rockets to prepare for school events coming soon and conduct the second and last destructive burst test of a fired steam vessel. All were successful.

The society has needed more storage space at the MTA and was glad to receive a donated 40-foot container. We are very grateful to member, Dimitri Timohovich, for making that possible including transporting to the pads in the north yard. We hope to add shelving and reorganize our gear soon.

New storage space at the MTA.

The vertical test stand is in need of some refurbishment. After USC’s last failed solid motor test, the anchor bolts will have to be removed and the concrete patched as necessary. A new mounting design is being discussed and USC is willing to provide labor and support to the cleanup activities. Measurements of the entire floor plan were made to make a drawing for easier planning of future tests. The vertical test stand has stood for many years and will be ready for many more.

Our pad is well worn and in need of some work.

We took some time to examine the area where our new restroom facility will be placed in the south of the MTA. Seeing the placement of the septic system is an important next step in expanding our facility.

Future site of the RRS MTA restroom facility.

Bill Inman ran his second burst test of a retired 20-lb propane container. He rebuilt the “mailbox” sheet metal shroud and found another propane fired burner. Mechanical cables to remotely pull the vent valve open or pull away the heat source were tested and ready. With 4 gallons of water filling the closed vessel laying on its side and the burner lit and running, the vessel was run to failure at 1260 psig. This was higher than the prior 1135 psig burst of the first tank on 1.15.2022 and both well above the proof pressure of 900 psig for these commercial product vessels for cold liquid storage.

Bill Inman prepares his second test article for burst testing.
Similar setup as before with the relief valve for safety
Bill cleans up and insoects his equipment after a successful burst.

A video camera recorded the pressure gauge as the heating took place. Total run time was roughly the same at 45 minutes. Bill safely monitored and recorded the time and rising pressure readings with binoculars from the safety of our blockhouse. Footage was reviewed to confirm the last reading before burst (1260 psig). A second video camera was positioned north of the test article and recorded some of fragments flying away. Collateral damage was less on this second test and it will be the last one of its kind. With two data points, a conservative limit can be set and Bill’s steam rocket tests will use an ample factor of safety.

PVC launch rails for wire launching model rockets.

After the area was clear and the major fragments gathered, we brought out one of our PVC rail launchers which will be used in forthcoming launch events. We had a few model rockets to fly and the winds were light making recovery less of a hike.

The Estes Generic E2X takes flight with a solid recovery.
Keith Yoerg celebrates another flight and recovery of the Charlie Horse.

It was nice to have an easy and fun time at the MTA. We barbecued a few burgers and ate well that sunny day with cool temperaturess. We plan to be back again for more maintenance operations and another school launch event.

For questiions, contact the RRS secretary or president,


January 2022 virtual meeting

Keith Yoerg, Secretary, Reaction Research Society


The society held its first monthly meeting of the new year by teleconference on Friday, January 14, 2022. We welcomed our newly elected officers including our new society president, Dave Nordling.

The meeting started by reminding everyone that membership dues for 2022 must be paid by January 1. Despite prior notices, the RRS decided that member dues for 2022 will remain at 2021 rates, $40 for associate and administrative members, $20 for student members, Payments can be made through Paypal using the “Donate” link button on the RRS.ORG website.

In addition to the treasurer’s report, the Amazon Smile account of the RRS received over $100 from quarterly purchases made by those who selected the RRS as their charitable organization.

An update was presented to the society. on the progress made with the new restroom facility at the Mojave Test Area.

The recent MTA launch event on 12-17-2021 was reviewed. The firing report is posted on the RRS website.

A testing event at the Mojave Test Area on Saturday, January 15th, is planned, The pyrotechnic operator in charge is Dave Nordling,

Member project updates were made at the meeting including the Compton Comet and the Scalded Cat.

The society is encouraging our members to seek their pyrotechnic operator licenses through CALFIRE. This will help the society have greater flexibility in our operations and give us a greater voice in amateur rocketry in our state,

UCLA is planning to hold another static fire of their liquid rocket at the MTA on 2/5/2022. Dave Nordling will be the pyrotechnic operator in charge.

The Compton Comet team will make a presentation to the society on their progress to date and remaining objectives at the next monthly meeting to be held February 11, 2022.