Rockets Away!


Welcome to the 4-H Rockets Away! web site. The Rockets Away! educational program teaches the science of rocketry through the use of hands-on experiments, computer software, and the building and launching of 2-liter bottle rockets and solid-fuel model rockets.

Design Zone!
If you cannot see the interactive movie below, you will need to download and install the Flash plug-in for your browser.
1.    Click the "Yes" button to begin.
2.    Supply values for your demo rocket and click the "Build Rocket" button.
3.    Click the "Launch" button to see how high your rocket will travel.
4.    To reset your parameters and try again, click the "Change Rocket" button.
A brief overview of the parameters in the Demo are listed here to help you get the best performance out of your rocket...
Cone Weight (.3 - 15 .oz) 
When properly weighted, the rocket's nose section will actually pull the rest of the rocket behind it. However, too much weight will slow its performance, just as too little weight will cause the rocket to spin around its center of gravity. Valid cone weight ranges are .3 - 15 ounces.
Body Weight (.8 - 15 .oz) 

Tail Weight (.8 - 15 .oz) 
Less is better for the body and tail weights. However, this program requires you to add a few ounces of weight to account for the bottle's body and tail sections, along with any materials you might add to each section like fins and tape. Valid body and tail weight ranges are .8 - 15.0 ounces.
Water (0 to 64 .oz) 

Pressure (1 - 140 psi) 
To make your rocket fly you could simply pressurize and launch it much like a balloon filled with air. However, to improve your rocket's performance, try adding varying amounts of water and air pressure. Remember, your rocket is an action/reaction machine. The greater the mass of water you push in one direction, the greater the push will be on the rocket. But remember, your space is limited to 2-liters. If you use too much of this space for water, you won't have enough space for the air to push it out. Valid amounts of water are between 0 - 64 ounces. Valid amounts of air are between 1 to 140 p.s.i.

501GPM Rockets Away!: Exploring the Science of Forces and Motion (Teacher Guide)
Recommended for teachers and other group leaders, this popular favorite is now up-to-date and more effective than ever at teaching the concepts of forces and motion via rocketry. The project's exciting conclusion is building and launching 2-liter bottle water rockets. A Rockets Away! Student Logbook is required for each student. A bottle-rocket launcher may be avialable from your county Extension office. (See below for information on how to purchase your own.)
Click here to order.
501RI Rockets Away! Student Logbook
501RS Rockets Away! Student Logbook (set of 25)
These ten lessons, described in detail inthe Rockets Away Teacher Guide, are a student's gateway to the practical knowledge behnd Newton's Laws of Motion. Educational research shows that the practice of recording one's own data and observations helps a student internalize concepts. Sold individually or in classroom packs of 25. For use with 501GPM Rockets Away! Teacher Guide above.
Click here to order a single copy.
Click here to order a class set of 25.
Rockets Away! Informational Flyer With Crosswalk to Ohio Science Standards
Rockets Away! Lessons at a Glance Crosswalk to National Science Standards
Rockets Away! Presentation

501 Rockets Away (2-liter Bottles)
Study the science of rocketry through a variety of hands-on experiments for all ages. Members conclude this project by building and launching 2-liter bottle water rockets.
Click here to order.
Pages 2 and 3 in have been revised and are now more streamlined with clear project requirements. You can download the revised pages here.
503 Rockets Away (Solid-Fuel Model Rockets)
Study the science of rocketry through a variety of hands-on experiments for all ages. Members conclude this project by building and launching a solid-fuel model rocket. The rocket can be built from scratch or a kit.
Click here to order.
Available for free download, this supplement to the 503M Rocketry Master project discusses basic aspects of model rocket design, including safety, clustering, staging, stability, and more. Sample rocket projects and resources are also included.

2-Liter Bottle Launcher
Launchers that Extension educators have found helpful include these:
Bike Pump
The Deluxe Port Pump II (item BG59323) from Pitsco Education, another one of our favorites, includes heavy-duty construction and an easy-to-see pressure gauge. Product details and ordering are available at Call 800.835.0686 for more information.

If you would like to expand your knowledge of space-related information we have located the following links, we believe you may find interesting . . .