What can I use for fuel in my homemade rocket?
I want to build my own dry fuel rocket from scratch and I can't find a thing on the web to tell me what to use for fuel.
Rocket fuel needs to be a substance that burns fast but does not explode - that's why you can't use gunpowder. The most basic rocket fuel is usually about 71% nitrate, 25% carbon, and 4% sulfur. Do not attempt to mix up anything yourself!
You will need to purchase a commercially-made rocket engine. For first time rocket makers, the best engine to use is type A8-3. They are the lowest power but don't worry, they still go so high that you lose track of them on a clear day. There are also B and C type engines, but for those you need some kind of binoculars and a couple of extra friends so that you can keep track of your rocket. Don't forget to put a stop inside your rocket so that the engine doesn't just shoot right through it! It helps if you buy the rocket engines before you construct your rocket so that you can tell exactly how big your rocket body needs to be.
Get More 'Curious?' with Our New PODCAST:
- Podcast? Subscribe? Tell me about the Ask an Astronomer Podcast
- Subscribe to our Podcast | Listen to our current Episode
- Cool! But I can't now. Send me a quick reminder now for later.
How to ask a question:
If you have a follow-up question concerning the above subject, submit it here. If you have a question about another area of astronomy, find the topic you're interested in from the archive on our site menu, or go here for help.
This page has been accessed 35828 times since July 15, 2004.
Last modified: July 16, 2004 11:12:59 AM
Ask an Astronomer is hosted by the Astronomy Department at Cornell University and is produced with PHP and MySQL.
Warning: Your browser is misbehaving! This page might look ugly. (Details)