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Make: High-Power Rockets by Mike Westerfield

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Chapter 9. Selecting Parachutes

Almost all high-power rockets are recovered using parachutes. You might see other forms of recovery on smaller, low-power rockets, like streamers, helicopter recovery, tumble recovery, or gliders, but these are rare on high-power rockets, primarily because high-power rockets are much heavier. Using a recovery method other than parachute recovery for a high-power rocket is not something we’ll consider here.

There are three issues we need to deal with when selecting parachutes for our rockets. The first is calculating how fast the rocket should be traveling when it lands, and from that, how large the parachute needs to be. The second issue applies directly to dual deployment. While we want a rocket to fall as quickly ...

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