Who says science isn't fun? Build this 5-minute rocket and you'll have hours of fun. Plus you might learn a thing or two about propulsion systems and rocket design along the way.
To get started, you'll need the following items:
- rocket fuel (Alka-Seltzer® tablets)
- rocket motor (an empty 35mm Fuji Film canister)
- rocket plans (make your own crazy designs and see which work best)
1. Design your rocket. A simple cylinder, nose cone, and a pair of fins will suffice. Use bond paper or Bristol board to draw your plan. Your final rocket should stand about six inches tall and be approximately 1 3/8 inches in diameter.
2. Cut out your rocket components (e.g., cylinder, nose cone, and fins), tape/glue them together, and test-fit your assembly over the film canister cap.
3. Open the film canister and drop one-half of an Alka-Seltzer tablet into the bottom portion.
4. Now do this step extremely quickly. Fill the canister half full of water, snap the canister cap into place, slide the rocket over the cap, and GET BACK!
5. Pop, fizz, whoosh! Houston, we have lift-off.
You can also follow along with the simple instructions in the following video and you'll be blasting off in five minutes.
For more interesting information about Earth, space, and technology, visit the NASA Space Place.
This experiment is excerpted from 101 Outer Space Projects for the Evil Genius, by Dave Prochnow (McGraw-Hill, 2007).
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Might be cheaper to use baking soda and vinegar instead of water and Alka-Seltzer.
Make sure younger people do not stand over or near the rocket!!!
How about trying it with diet coke and mentos!!!
the baking soda/vinegar combo wouldn't give it the lift. i used it in my seventh grade rocket project and it didn't work too well.
If a little kid stands over this project there most likly only going to get a scare and maybe a paper cut. There are to many child safety rules out there lets not make more. I remember being a kid throwing lawn darts, and jumping off the house. I am as protective as the next person so don't get me wrong when I say sometimes you have to let kids get hurt a little, so they don't get hurt a lot later.
I found something really explosive when I was a kid it was from mixing (I'm not sure about this) hydrogen proxide and chlorine to gather onley three years later did I learn from my father that I had made a deadly gas of some sort but then agin he might have been yanking my chain. I do advise the use of these chemicals out side beause it is very smelly in an unpleasent sort of way and also it is very explosive. don't blame the king of losers for any dameges. and please do not let any children be about when mixing things that you don't know whhat the reasult will be . thank you.
wat r u guys talkin bout? alka seltzer and soda? i got a lot of spare rocket engines around. lets see how that works :)