The PSAS team planned to have their LV2.3 airframe updates ready for BALLS this year, but RL interfered and they weren't ready to go on time. A quick bit of rescheduling and we decided to fly over the weekend of the 16-17 of October.

Tsolo and family welcomed us warmly as we arrived on Saturday afternoon after driving over from Portland. They've got a new puppy who is also cute and friendly.

We managed to get the launch tower and flight operations set up before dark, cooked dinner and spent the evening prepping the airframe. It was cold overnight, but the light cloud cover that had been there when we arrived was nearly gone by morning. I called in to open the waiver and was asked to hold until noon, which suited us just fine.

The rocket finally made it onto the rail around 1:30 and we managed to convince the launch controller to actually light the motor at 2:44:39 (according to the GPS data). Flying on a CTI N2850 blue-streak, LV2.3 hit about 380m/s and reached 4851m.

This was the first flight with the new fin system, you can see how that works in the video here:

Portland State Aerospace LV2.3 flight with roll control from Keith Packard on Vimeo.

The roll control system worked as designed, executing a programmed sequence of maneuvers during ascent. You can see the canard fins moving back and forth in the video, controlling the roll of the airframe.

Yes, the fins really do spin separately from the airframe. You can see how that was constructed here:

PSAS LV2.3 Spin Can

Live telemetry and stored flight data, consisting of GPS coordinates along with barometry altimeter and accelerometer information, was collected using the TeleMetrum flight computer. The airframe was recovered about 800m downrange.

Thanks to Portland State University for their support in hosting PSAS and Oregon Rocketry for letting us fly at their launch site.