Rockets are complex, multifaceted machines. Building a rocket the size of Therion involves dozens of people. No one person has a complete understanding of the entire vehicle.
It is possible to get engrossed in a small part of the rocket while losing sight of the larger design goals. This makes it critical to stop, step back, and get a third party look at the entire system. Implementing a design freeze and writing out the intimate details of the rocket for expert outsiders to review prevents tunnel vision and acts as a necessary reality check.
This process is known as a Critical Design Review or CDR. Rocket Team has spent the last week preparing for our Critical Design Review with researchers, industry members, and faculty. On Thursday we presented our design for Therion to this panel for review. The CDR was very successful. Good feedback from this panel will contribute to design improvements and procedural changes over the next few weeks.
Here an elated group of rocketeers breathed a deep sigh of relief after the three hour presentation. I have it on good authority that the number of hours slept by rocket team members quadrupled Thursday night.
For any interested parties, the CDR presentation and CDR document are linked below: