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American Academy Prepares for National Rocketry Challenge

Submitted by Kristi Doke of American Academy

American Academy is currently preparing to compete in the Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC). The TARC is the world’s largest rocket contest, sponsored by the Aerospace Industries Association and the National Association of Rocketry.

Each year, approximately 7,000 students compete in the TARC. The top 100 teams throughout the nation, based on local qualification flights, are invited to Washington D.C. in May for the national finals.

American Academy’s team is currently in the design phase to compete in this year’s competition. The team consists of two eighth grade students, Taylor Gibson and Srish Sharma, and two seventh grade students, Annika Chapleski and Wei Ye. They are using computer rocket simulator software called ROCKSIM to design, launch and redesign a rocket. After design is complete, students will build their rocket, field test their design, modify as needed and compete in local qualifying launches in hopes to compete in the national finals.

School holds first robotics exhibition

A robotics exhibition was held at American Academy on December 12, as a culminating activity for the sixth grade robotics STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) week. Students received an engineering challenge which involved designing and programming a robot that could maneuver through a mine shaft to rescue trapped miners. During the exhibition, teams were evaluated on a point system. First place went to Connor Mawhinney, Savannah Heebner and Frank Dehoff. Second place went to Nikolas Hatton, Olivia Shaw and Nishal Kallupalle and third place went to Haven White, Matt Kramer and Isaiah Mebane. Peter Bell, Emily Butler and Mitch Lauffer won the teamwork award. Hillary Hanson, Andrew Santos and Zach Mass won the technical award for their innovative programming.

Congratulations sixth graders!



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