GT Drop Tower Challenge

2022 ~ Present | Technical assistance will be provided by the Center for Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) in Bremen, Germany, and possibly others. ZARM operates the largest drop tower in the world and is currently building a second one.

Goals

Design, build, and test the first microgravity drop tower at Georgia Tech

Issues Involved or Addressed

Drop towers are the most accessible and cost-effective microgravity research facility. By dropping an experiment inside a vacuum tube or a drag shield, free-fall conditions are generated that unveil a wide variety of fundamental physical phenomena. Drop towers can also be used to support the development spacecraft technologies before we send them to space. In this project, we will design, build, and test the very first drop tower at Georgia Tech in collaboration with some of the top experts in the field, joining the very few universities in the world that benefit from this kind of facility. A space systems engineering approach will be followed to design the tower. Starting from the scientific objectives, we will define a series of technical requirements and evaluate potential architectures. Several working groups will collaborate on the design following a concurrent engineering approach. Students will build the facility in one of the stairwells of the ESM building and test it using their own experiments.

Methods and Technologies

  • Space systems engineering
  • Structural design
  • Mechanical design
  • Building integration
  • Software development
  • Aerodynamic analysis in ANSYS Fluent
  • Magnetic simulation in Comsol Multiphysics
  • Public outreach & website development

Academic Majors of Interest

  • BusinessMarketing
  • DesignBuilding Construction and Facility Management
  • EngineeringAerospace Engineering
  • EngineeringCivil Engineering
  • EngineeringElectrical Engineering
  • EngineeringMechanical Engineering
  • EngineeringRobotics
  • SciencesApplied Physics

Preferred Interests and Preparation

Students with a strong background or interest in space systems development, structural design, aerodynamics, mechanics, electromagnetism, software development, website development, and business or an interest in learning are welcome to join!

Meeting Schedule & Location

Time 
9:30-10:20
Meeting Location 
Klaus 1440
Meeting Day 
Thursday

Team Advisors

Dr. Álvaro Romero-Calvo
  • Aerospace Engineering

Partner(s) and Sponsor(s)

Technical assistance will be provided by the Center for Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) in Bremen, Germany, and possibly others. ZARM operates the largest drop tower in the world and is currently building a second one.

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