What is Build a Rocket?

Build A Rocket is a new program providing an opportunity for high school and college students to build a high performance, 18 foot, high power rocket that delivers world class performance.

Available Fall 2018 - The Build A Rocket Kit

The Build A Rocket kit offers a unique, leading edge, true high tech STEM education project to motivate students toward higher education.  The rocket comes in a pre-manufactured kit and can be assembled by simple, common tools like screwdrivers and wrenches.  No drilling, no welding, no complicated or dangerous requirements.  Cost to build an equivalent rocket is $20,000, four times the cost of the Build A Rocket kit. The kit comes with a free launch from Friends of Amateur Rocketry, Inc., a non-profit organization. Build A Rocket will select students from around the country to come to California and work closely with a team to build one very special rocket. This exclusive project’s purpose is the rare opportunity to design and build the very first student-built rocket to reach space! Sign up now for developing details.

Build A Rocket Kit Specs:

  • 18 feet tall
  • 30,000-foot apogee
  • 500 pounds of thrust from a bipropellant liquid-fueled (LOX and alcohol), and ablatively cooled engine
  • Non-pyrotechnic ignition and parachute deployment for added safety
  • Altimeter/GPS-based recovery system
  • Onboard telemetry equipment automatically transmits prescison location data
  • Two-stage parachute recovery system


May 2019 - Build A Rocket Sponsored Launch at FAR

 $100,000 in Prizes!

College and university students from around the world will gather at the Friends of Amateur Rocketry (FAR) California launch site on May 5 through May 13th, 2018 to compete for $100,000. in prize money. The competition takes place on the anniversary of the launch of Alan Shepard, America’s first man in space.

“We see this as a logical follow-on to the Orteig Prize of the 1920’s that sparked aviation, and the X Prize of the 2000’s that jump-started commercial spaceflight,” says Robert Zurbin, founder of the Mars Society which is co-sponsoring the launch contest with FAR.

Teams can build either of two types of rockets for the competition: bi-propellant liquid-fueled or liquid methane & liquid-oxygen. The rocket which comes the closest to reaching 45,000’ will be declared the winner. A $50,000 prize will be rewarded in each of the two categories. A team who builds both types of rockets and wins both competitions will take home the entire $100,000. Monies will be donated directly to their university or college to be used for scholarships for students in STEM fields related to rocketry.

The FAR launch site (FAR Site) site is uniquely located under the controlled air space umbrella of Edwards Air Force Base, at the edge of a military supersonic corridor. The facility has worked with everyone from the Boy Scouts to companies like Raytheon and Boeing. Far Site has a blockhouse, viewing bunkers, explosive magazines, firefighting equipment, propellant storage, static test stands, and launch rails. Heavy equipment such as an all-terrain-forklift, skip loader, and boom crane are available for rocket unloading and setup. Student teams can use FAR’s static test engine stands and rocket launch rails to tweak performance prior to the competition.

Details and an entry form are available on the FAR and Mars Society websites, http://friendsofamateurrocketry.org/, http://www.marssociety.org/.


Build A Rocket operates in conjunction with Build A Plane Inc., a non-profit organization.vBuild A Plane and Build A Rocket work in a proud partnership with the Federal Aviation Administration.
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