Student Teams,

If your student team's payload remains within your rocket throughout your flight, you do not have to read any further.


If your payload is deployed at or above 5,000ft. it is a significant concern to ESRA.  


ESRA requires dual deploy recovery on all rockets.  We also require GPS tracking on all rockets.  Both of these requirements are necessary to help students quickly and easily recover their rockets.  With potentially 150 rocket launches, ESRA must limit the amount of time teams spend looking for rockets.


Your team COMPOUNDS this problem when you deploy a 2nd (or more) payload object from apogee or above 5k'.  More falling object increase risk and danger.  It also requires longer recovery times.  And it could lead to more lost rockets and payloads.

The number of ejecting payloads increases every year.  If this trend continues, ESRA will be forced to respond by further restricting or completely removing this option all together.


For 2023, ESRA Range Safety Officials will be spending significant more time evaluating ejected payloads.  Test flights and testing payload tracking should be included in all testing plan schedules.