OSAKA, Japan, March 31, 2015 /PRNewswire/ —
– Special Movie of Rocket Launch released on YouTube –
On March 7, the Candy Rocket Project Committee, organized by Japanese confectionery maker UHA Mikakuto Co. and aerospace experts, successfully launched a hybrid rocket using candies for fuel for the first time in the world. The launch was successfully conducted twice. The highest altitude reached was 813ft (the first launch; measurable, the second launch; unmeasurable).
Experts involved are Director Yutaka Wada of the Akita Space Development Institute at Akita University, Director Hiroaki Akiyama of the Institute for Education on Space at Wakayama University, and Professor Seiichi Sakamoto of the NAOJ Chile Observatory, all internationally renowned in space research and rocket development.
Hybrid rockets are researched as next-generation space transport rockets. However, the technology to launch a hybrid rocket using candies as solid fuel did not exist as of March 9, 2015. This launch was the world’s first challenge at doing so.
Currently, a special movie on this project, including the launch of the Candy Rocket is available on the “Candy Rocket Project” website.
“Candy Rocket Project” URL: http://www.uha-mikakuto.co.jp/candyrocket/en
YouTube special movie URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPYgJBicW2w
Comments from Candy Rocket developers:
— Yutaka Wada, Director, Akita Space Development Institute, Akita University: “We were relieved that the rocket was launched wonderfully. This project proved that candies can be used as a high energy fuel. If humans went to outer space and had to find energy from limited resources, candies that they brought for survival food could be used as emergency fuel when they ultimately have to escape. This research proved the capability of candies in such situation.”
— Hiroaki Akiyama, Director, Institute for Education on Space, Wakayama University:”One of the purposes of having adults like us create a challenge with free thinking was to have not only elementary and junior high school students, but also high school and university students notice that ‘you can think more freely in the world,’ and have them challenge various things. At the same time, we want to have them understand that it is important to gain an understanding of the people around them and create a supportive environment since ‘free thinking’ could cause worries and troubles.”
— Yasumasa Yamada, President and CEO, UHA Mikakuto Co.: “We were able to show another aspect of candies by showing how Puccho transforms from something enjoyable to eat to something that leads to children’s dreams. From this project, we want to show support not only as a confectionery manufacturer, but also as someone who supports all challenges that expand dreams.”
About Candy Rocket developers
— Yutaka Wada, Director, Akita Space Development Institute, Akita University: Belongs to the Innovation Center for Engineering Design and Manufacturing of the Graduate School of Engineering and Resource Science. Specializes in aerospace engineering. In this project, handled design and development of the engine of the hybrid rocket that uses candies by applying knowledge of mechanical engineering and robot propulsion engineering.
— Hiroaki Akiyama, Director, Institute for Education on Space, Wakayama University: Specializes in planetary surface exploration and space education. Member of the asteroid probe “HAYABUSA” mission and SELenological and ENgineering Explorer (SELENE) “KAGUYA” mission.
— Seiichi Sakamoto, Professor, NAOJ Chile Observatory: Was in charge of all proliferation, education and external affair activities concerning space science research as the Director for Education and Public Outreach at the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science of JAXA until July 2014. Specializes in radio astronomy and science communication. In this project, proposed the possibility of and ideas for the hybrid rocket experience which uses high-calorie food that contains much sugar.
What are hybrid rockets?
A hybrid rocket is one with an engine system that combines two types of propellants: solid fuel and liquid oxidant. As it is safe and environmentally friendly and shows excellent cost effectiveness and performance, it gathers attention as a next-generation space transport rocket. In general hybrid rockets, resin, rubber and wax are used as solid fuel, but in this project, familiar soft candies are used as solid fuel. How can a rocket be launched with candies? First, liquefied gas acting as the oxidant is poured into the cylindrical combustor filled with candies. Then, the candies will start burning as they melt, and will burst out in gasified form with great force. This power enables the rocket to be launched into the sky. Approximately 20 pieces of candy will be used for one hybrid rocket. It is important to create an environment where the candies can sufficiently burn to launch the rocket high into the sky.
About UHA Mikakuto Co.
Head office: Osaka City
President and CEO: Yasumasa Yamada
SOURCE: UHA Mikakuto Co.
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