Ascender Rib Fit Test 2

Last weekend we again had one of the Ascender 100 arms inflated in the parking lot. We were going to test both the original rib that had been extended and a new rib. During the initial inflation there was a POP! The inner cell of the original rib burst. We continued with the tests of the new rib. This rib design was significantly better that the first one. The test also pointed out a number of flaws in the design we well as a couple of operational problems. No problem through, that is what the test was for. The next generation of rib is being designed. I suspect we’ll need eight to nine generation to really hone it in. We’re also working on new filling gear with new low pressure gauges. We need also to monitor the ambient pressure inside the main envelope in addition to pressure inside the rib. It’s way too easy to over pressure the outer envelope and creating forces to great for the rib to overcome.

The team really put in a hard days work on this one.

Here’s some pics from the Wednesday night build session before the test:

Inside the rocket launch box front Inside the rocket launch box back foiling the Launch Box 2
Inside the launch box after we finished foil lining the foam.

Original rib modified
The modified original rib.

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