October was a highly productive month for our team as we submitted to SpaceX the Preliminary Design Report. This report consists of designs of each subsystem, along with an explanation of design rationales, and testing & validation plans.
In a closer look, the Airframe subsystem started their meetings, researching and designing the aerodynamic shell of the pod. The team initially decided on which material to use, ultimately choosing carbon fiber because of it's low weight, competitive price and flexibility to design alternatives. The team also started designing initial iterations of the shell structure, then testing them in Solidworks flow simulation to determine the aerodynamic drag force on the design alternative, and to visually observe the flow trajectories around the shell.
Propulsion team has also advanced with their design, completing the first iteration. One of the biggest challenges they faced was sourcing the main drive wheels that are rated to high RPMS and large torques. The team finally overcame this challenge and determined a reliable rollercoaster wheel manufacturer who will be able to source both the right sized drive wheels.
Brakes team have completed the first round of their professional design review, making the brakes design more robust. In this process, they generated a design report and received feedback from a professional with design and fabrication experience from the industry. Their next challenge is to complete the magnetic drag profile test.
With our building deadline approaching, the business team is actively reaching out to raise funds, which will allow us to buy materials to conduct testing. We were honored to have Grant Engineering office take a tour with us in our production facility on October 15th, and we give many thanks to our newest sponsors, AFGO Mechanical Services, Rolf Lesem, and Standish Lee. If you would like to see our student team complete build the first Cooper Union pod, please consider donating here.