CPSS puts significant resources into the design and development of rocket motors. Our Propulsion Team handles the engineering, manufacturing, and testing of these motors. This year, we attempted to build a self pressurizing hybrid system. In previous years, we have used hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene (HTPB) for solid fuel, nitrous oxide for a liquid oxidizer, and nitrogen gas as back pressure to push the nitrous oxide through our injector to burn the fuel.

To minimize complexity and reduce weight, we eliminated the nitrogen back pressure. Instead, we let the vaporized nitrous oxide push the liquid nitrous oxide into the fuel. However, even after successful flow tests, we ran into problems, burning through our fuel and melting our combustion chamber. From this, we reevaluated our options for building a hybrid rocket.

We decided to go back to our nitrogen pressurized system, and are working hard to manufacture and test everything before our launch date.