Hermes 1 Launches to 32,400 ft above California

On July 21, 2018 Hermes 1 soared to 32,400 ft above the Mojave Desert.


This flight achieved many notable superlatives for MIT’s Rocket Team, and collegiate rocketry in general.

  • Largest MIT rocket flown by the team, by weight (121 lbs), propellant (36 lbs), and altitude
  • First MIT built solid rocket motor to fly, culminating almost three years of work.
  • Second largest university-built rocket motor.
  • First use of the pneumatic piston recovery system and disk-gap-band parachute developed at MIT
  • First MIT all-composite fin can built, tested up to Mach 1.8
  • First university payload ride-share.

We could not be more thrilled with the successful liftoff of this rocket. The demonstration of our propulsion and aero-structures paves the way for larger rockets in the future.

The successful recovery of the rocket is also very heartening. The recovery system employed on this rocket was developed from scratch at the beginning of the year to support team-specific goals, and we successfully demonstrated it on it’s first outing.

We’d also like to take a moment to appreciate the great collaboration from the University of Victoria Rocket Team which supplied the payload for this flight. Building on the standards implemented by Space Dynamics Laboratory we were able to fly their payload with limited notice due to common interfaces, and the assistance of University of Victoria Payload personnel.

We’ll finish up our data review in the coming days, but as always you can find our working documents on our wiki, linked above.

Check out the launch video here!



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