GoFast 2014 rocket reaches record altitude for amateur team

The CSXT (Civilian Space eXploration Team) on May 17, 2004 became the first amateur group to send a rocket t o space (i.e. greater than 100 km or 62 miles) when their GoFast rocket reach 115 km (72 miles) high.  

A new GoFast rocket was launched on July 14th this year and it broke their old record by reaching 117.6 km (73.1 miles) high. Here is a compilation of clips from cameras on the vehicle:

From the caption:

GoFast 2014 Space Launch Team

The GoFast 2014 rocket officially set a new world record on July 14, 2014 as the highest and fastest amateur rocket ever launched into space.

Analysis of the data from the recovered military grade Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) that flew onboard shows that the GoFast rocket reached 385,800 feet above mean sea level (73.1 miles) and hit a top speed of 3,580 miles per hour. The old record held by the CSXT’s GoFast 2004 rocket was 72 miles with a top speed of 3,420 mph.

The GoFast 2014 IMU had flown successfully on four commercial space missions at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) in New Mexico and was calibrated using C-Band transponder US Army radar tracking data prior to its flight into space on the GoFast rocket July 14, 2014. Statistical analysis of the WSMR flights and the GoFast 2014 launch verifies the 73.1 miles attained by the GoFast rocket has a variation of 0.6 miles with a confidence level of 95%.

Congratulations to everyone for a job well done! Thank you so much for everyone’s participation and endless hours making this launch a success.

GoFast 2014 list of accomplishments;

• World record highest altitude rocket launch
• World record fastest speed rocket launch
• First photo taken from space onboard an amateur rocket
• Second amateur rocket in history to reach space

Update Aug.31.2014:  Here’s a photo of the CSXT group that launched the GoFast 2014 rocket:

CSXT group shot

3 thoughts on “GoFast 2014 rocket reaches record altitude for amateur team”

  1. Why have it spin so fast during most of the ascent? That would have caused increased drag on the fins in the lower atmosphere, thus shaving off some vertical speed and potential altitude. My guess for the reason why is that the whole rocket spinning would give it gyroscopic stability, which would force it to go straight up without having the added complexity and weight of an advanced inertial guidance system controlling a gimballed engine.

  2. Sounds reasonable. I just looked at a video of Derek DeVille’s Qu8k and it spins on the way up but not nearly as fast – http://youtu.be/rvDqoxMUroA

    OTOH, this UP Aerospace launch spins even faster – http://youtu.be/bayeZb-TqK0
    I’ll note, though, that UPA is a spinoff from the original CXST group so not surprising they use similar techniques.

    The Armadillo STIG rockets don’t spin much at low alts, e.g. http://youtu.be/DSO8BlMQYxo

    So depends on the rocket and the particular approach they are using for stability.

  3. Anyone know the specifications on this rocket? A suborbital rocket can serve as the first stage of an orbital system.

    Bob Clark

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