The students of team Lyoko, an Eagle Prize winner from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Prescott campus, are designing a 700 gram payload that will participate in the CanSat competition. This competition, which is in Burkett, Texas on June 8, will launch the student designed CanSat module in a small rocket to an altitude of about one half a mile, from which it will be disengaged and its descent will simulate deploying a payload to a planet. The goal of the project is to successfully deliver the “science payload” of a large egg safely to the ground without causing it to break.
After being dropped from the rocket, the CanSat will deploy a parachute to slow its descent. After descending to about 400 meters above ground level, the parachute must be cut, at which point the CanSat must be able to deliver itself and the payload safely to the surface. The team plans to implement this by using a maple seedling design in order to slow the payloads descent. This will slow the descent, and also causes rotational motion in the payload, which will help slow it further. The key to this design is placing the wings in a specific orientation to slow the payload down to 20 meters per second or less.
The CanSat has several data collection segments, and due to the weight constraints for the system, the team chose to include an impact force sensor, which was one of the optional experiments for the competition. The container is a cylinder 9 inches long and with a 5 inch radius, and can measure temperature, position via GPS, battery voltage remaining, and time. ERAU Daytona has participated in this yearly completion regularly, but this is the first time in years that the Prescott campus has had the opportunity to participate. The last time the Prescott campus participated, the requirements were radically different, and so this team is treading fairly new ground.