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High altitude photography and rockets.

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by PhantomFanatic, Jan 20, 2015.

  1. PhantomFanatic

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    I ask because of two reasons.
    Edit: Well, it was supposed to be a question! :)
    1). I'm interested in high altitude photography.

    2). I wonder if they have to get any FAA approval before 'penetrating' possible aircraft heights.

    I know, in competitions, they secure a field away from most everything and if the chute works, they may recover it. But, what about on the way up,and back down? Are they supposed to get FAA approval or can you just launch a small rocket in a nearby field?

    I remember (WAY back) a college student who showed film he captured from a small model rocket. This was around 1971. No tiny digital cameras then! So, he took a lens and built a 'movie camera' with a rubber band for the drive. He showed the film and I was hooked!! That day, I said I'm going to do that! It was incredible watching the blast off and also the film captured on the way down under a parachute.

    My vow disintegrated into my studies, job and not knowing how to contact others in the field. (Pre-Internet)

    So, can anyone enlighten me? Short of reversing time and becoming an astronaut, are there other legal ways for high altitude photography?
     
  2. PhantomFanatic

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    Come on folks! Somebody must know someone in this sport. I guess I should have Googled it.

    I'm sorry if that should have been my first choice. I've gotten used to trusting "y'all" folks.
     
  3. knuckles

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    Maybe no one knows the answer. When I was a kid in the 70's I used to build and launch Estes rockets all the time. I never thought about or heard anything about FAA back then. There was one model that had a small non digital camera that could take pictures when the parachute deployed. I never got that one because it was a bit more expensive.
    I remember rocket engines were rated for different size rockets. Well one time I had a small rocket but a bigger rated engine. Just to see what would happen I used it anyway. I never did find that rocket. No idea the altitude it got.
    I know people launch things like weather balloons with cameras for research. Do they get FAA approval? How would they even know the safe flight path for something drifting high in the wind?
    I'd be interested to hear if someone needs FAA approval to fly a tiny rocket.
     
  4. jadebox

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    Generally, if you are more than five miles from an airport, safely launching a rocket under three pounds, and using a G motor or smaller, you are good to go.

    Larger rockets and motors usually require certification from the National Association of Rocketry or Tripoli and a waiver from the FAA.

    For a more complete answer about FAA regulations for rockets, please see:

    http://www.flyrockets.com/regulations.asp

    I'd recommend visiting a rocketry club's launch to learn more. You can search for a club near you at:

    http://www.rocketreviews.com/rocketry-clubs.html

    -- Roger
     
  5. jadebox

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  6. jadebox

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