Over the last week, we have have been working on the parachute system. Our current parachute deployment system is spring powered as opposed to a CO2 or pyrotechnic system. The main benefit of a spring launched parachute is that it is reusable. This is especially useful for the test payload which will fly multiple times. The springs must be capable of launching a ~1.5 m (5 ft) parachute at least 0.6 m (2 ft) into the air, high enough to give the parachute time to deploy. The first model we tested, was a single spring version of the system. Tests revealed that it was far too weak. We then built a larger version with four springs, hoping it would have enough power to give us the launch height we needed. Below is the video of a test of the four spring parachute system.
We will be performing more parachute tests in the coming weeks.
Part 2 here.