Gonzaga Rocketry Takes Off

Andreas Andersson, Avery Steward, Jack Murray, Jared Marshall, and Sara Schwegel at the Tri Cities launch site.

November 02, 2022
School of Engineering & Applied Science

Congratulations to three engineering students who received their L1 certifications for high-powered rocketry on a fall launch trip to Pasco, Washington.

Andreas Andersson, Jack Murray, and Avery Steward each built a high-powered rocket which they flew at the launch site.

To earn certification, each student built and safely flew a high-powered rocket under the guidance of National Association of Rocketry members.

launch 1
launch 2

Rocket engineering requires understanding of topics such as fluid mechanics, heat transfer, thermodynamics, and system dynamics -- all topics of study central to mechanical engineering. This is a primary reason Rocketry is a project of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering, a student group led by Jared Marshall, a mechanical engineering senior.

"The knowledge that we have gained in these classes is being utilized in the engineering of our competition rocket," Marshall said. He previously earned his L1 certification.

The club aims to build and fly at the Spaceport America Challenge, the world's largest intercollegiate rocket engineering competition held in New Mexico.

launch director

The launch site Gonzaga students use is managed by the Tri-City Rocketeers. Not only do they provide the larger open space and FAA clearance required for high-power rockets, the Rocketeers offer the expertise and technical support students need to safely launch rockets.

"It was a blast," Murray said of his first flight. "My immediate impression was how cool the different rockets sounded and looked as they pierced through the sky. I was nervous that something was going to go wrong, but my Gonzaga peers and the helpful people in Pasco reassured me. Being able to launch my own rocket was an amazing experience."

Connect with the ASME Rocketry Club