Spaceport America Cup


Spaceport America Cup 2023

Join us as we host thousands of the world's most ambitious collegiate rocketeers in a one-of-a-kind event.
Project Technical Report Due, School Participation Letter, Poster and Podium Materials


Over 1,500 students and faculty will gather in Southern New Mexico for the fourth annual Spaceport America Cup in June of 2023.  Drawn by the opportunity to collaborate and compete at a world class spaceport facility, you represent the best and brightest from more than 150 colleges and universities located across the USA and around the world. 

Join us as we host thousands of the world's most ambitious collegiate rocketeers in a one-of-a-kind event. Part academic conference and part design-build-fly style competition, the Spaceport America Cup has something to offer students, faculty, industry representatives, and amateur aerospace aficionados alike.


The future beckons. 
​How will you answer the call?

Whether you are an academic, an industry representative, a retired professional, or simply a passionate amateur supportive of young minds who seek new horizons... there are many ways you may become a part of an event impacting the future of aerospace...

As a Sponsor...

You could interact with over a thousand talented STEM students from top ranked schools in a professional setting. You will see both them and their hardware perform in real world conditions. Furthermore, you will be helping make possible an event which helps make the best possible candidates for your company! 

As a Volunteer or Judge...

You will join the highly motivated team which brings together the thousands of moving pieces to build the world's largest collegiate rocket engineering conference and competition. From directing crowds to directing launches and everything in-between, we need your volunteerism at the Spaceport America Cup! 

As a Student... 

You will demonstrate your hard work on an international stage, in front of hundreds of your peers, professors, and prospective employers. You will engage in design-build-fly style rocket and payload engineering competitions in a professional setting, at world class facilities, where the sky is not the limit!

Guidelines for Spaceport America Cup - Intercollegiate Rocket Engineering Competition (IREC) are hosted on our website! 

You'll want to review the following documents:

  • IREC Rules and Requirements Document
  • IREC Design, Test, and Evaluation Guide
  • Integrated Master Schedule


Challenge Updates

Payload Challenge Entry Deadline is Tuesday, June 6, 2023.

May 28, 2023, 5:18 p.m. PDT by ESRA VP

Per the Payload Challenge rules, entries are due no later than two weeks prior to the event. For 2023, the entry deadline is is Tuesday June 6, 2023. 


Email your entries to:

The entry form is here:

2nd REMINDER TO ALL TEAMS - Tripoli memberships are REQUIRED for all Flyers of Record and any student team member on the Launch Pad or Recovery teams

May 27, 2023, 5:56 p.m. PDT by ESRA VP

No matter what country your team is from, you must have Tripoli Student Memberships before you arrive in New Mexico if you intend to work on energetics or travel downrange.


Again, Tripoli Memberships ONLY - NAR/CAR/UKRA, etc memberships will not be accepted.


Tripoli Memberships are REQUIRED for your Flyer of Record and for any student team members wanting to go downrange or working with energetics (ejection charges or motor preparation). If you intend to help load your team's rocket on the launch pad, be on the rocket recovery team or anyone working on energetics like ejection charges or motor, you must have a Tripoli Student Membership.  Your TRA membership will be checked/confirmed during registration.


Tripoli Student Membership is $10 and can be purchased here -


Technical Report and Additional Submissions submitted late

May 18, 2023, 8:41 p.m. PDT by ESRA Competition Operations

Hello Teams, 

In response to multiple forum questions, here is how we are dealing with late submissions. 

Per the R&R document, Technical Reports submitted after the 72 hour grace period will receive zero points. This includes amended technical reports — if you submitted (or plan to submit) a revised report that you want to be judged after the grace period expired, that is a late report. Accepting late reports or post-deadline revisions without penalty would be unfair to those teams who submitted on time. Accordingly, don’t let “perfect” be the enemy of “good enough.”

As a reminder, even if you are late, a technical report is required if you intend on flying during the Cup. 

For administrative documents like the school participation letter, extended abstract, slide deck, etc., late or missing submissions will incur a 15 point penalty for each item. This is the same penalty given to late submissions for your entry and progress reports. 

Again, even if you are late, your school participation letter is mandatory if you wish to compete. 

The deadlines have been posted for months and have not changed. No exceptions will be granted. 


May 18, 2023, 5:53 p.m. PDT by ESRA VP

If your team uses ANY RADIO FREQUENCIES, such as:

  • GPS systems
  • Radios
  • Rocket Telemetry
  • UAV/Drone/UAS

You MUST complete this form for frequency allocation.


Failure to submit this form and keep your frequency allocation updated up until launch date can lead to point deductions, delayed launch windows and possibly removal from the competition.

The Following teams have not submitted a Frequency Management Form


4    Ataturk University
21    Duke University
36    Indian Institute of Technology, Madras
40    Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey
43    Istanbul Technical University
51    Lenoir-Rhyne University
60    Mississippi State University
89    Seoul National University
101    The University of British Columbia
114    University College London
125    University of Louisville
141    University of Tennessee, Knoxville


May 18, 2023, 7:24 a.m. PDT by ESRA VP

We're receiving reports that rocket motors are being shipped directly to Hotels and AirBnBs.  This is unacceptable and potentially will have your deliveries REFUSED!!!


You should be purchasing all of your Motors through approved Vendors such as Animal Motor Works and Wildman Hobbies.   They will deliver the propellant directly to you during the Cup!