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Spontaneous Combustion | by jurvetson
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Spontaneous Combustion

With experimental motors flying all weekend, several were bound to provide spectacular failures.


And as one of the photographers wandering the range, I was closer than usual to a number of N-sized motors vaporizing rockets on the pad or soon after liftoff.


In this example, a home-brew motor mixed with 8 pounds of black powder hit a bit of a burp right after takeoff.


As the solid propellant motors rapidly rise to full pressure and sufficient heat to melt aluminum, a motor casing rupture can burst a rocket apart from within… leading to a shower of rocket confetti overhead.


There was so much going on… I took 1000 photos in 24 hours. It will take a few days to look through all that…


(best viewed large)

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Taken on September 29, 2007