Been launching water rockets with the kids for a few years, and thought I would try to amp things up a bit this year. I have been using the air compressor to generate the launching pressure, and the 80psi or so I get makes for an impressive launch – but I think we can do better. I have also been trying to make an electronic push-button type launcher, little kids have trouble pulling the rope to release the wrocket sometimes.
So I thought I would take a different approach and try to generate the pressure internally via combustion. That way the bottle would be basically sitting on the pad, not under pressure until ignition. I had previously thought I could generate H2O via electrolysis but thought that may be too dangerous to have 120vAC in the mix.. 🙂
So new plan is to use propane. I think if you start the bottle with x amount of air, then add propane until you hit the right mix and ignite you should be in business. The wrocket will either fly or blow up! Hopefully after a few tests I can identify the right mix.
Or maybe it will just blow up each time. Should be fun either way.