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What materials were used in the movie October Sky when they built the rockets?And also...

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mialynn | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 1, 2008 at 8:45 AM via web

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What materials were used in the movie October Sky when they built the rockets?

And also maybe even the steps or procedure followed? It's for a science writing project.

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hudsolaura | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted November 1, 2008 at 1:50 PM (Answer #1)

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The movie October Sky doesn't tell the audience everything the "Rocket Boys" used to construct their rockets but they did reveal a couple of ingredients.

They switched their fuel from black powder to potassium chlorate. They also experimented with potassium nitrate & sugar; a zinc – sulfur powder mix, and various binders.

Each switch the boys made was in response to a test failure that demanded a modification in their engineering design. The use of scientific method is fabulous. They identified a problem, came up with a probable solution, tested it, then either revised their approach or tossed it for a new one.

After finding that their nozzles could not take the heat inside the rockets, they had to special order a steel called S.A.E. 1018 bar stock. They learned to make new nozzles that could withstand the heat and eventually were completely successful in launching their rocket.

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xandria | College Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 7, 2008 at 11:33 AM (Answer #2)

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The answer is simple.  Get a copy of Rocket Boys by Homer Hickam.  October Sky is based on this book and Homer tells everything about his rockets in it.

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