Bryce Chanes

Aerospace Engineer, Rocket Enthusiast, Hobbyist​​

           Rocketry is my life, professionally and recreationally. Growing up I knew that engineering was what I wanted to do, following in my father's footsteps I imagined myself as a mechanical engineer and with my very rational and highly intuitive mind, I really enjoyed getting my hands dirty in RC planes, robots, and other activities. (See my Hobbies Page for more details on that) In February 2009, my Boy Scout Troop (262 from Camarillo) attended a Rocketry Organization of California launch. It was in-tents-ly cold and each scout was given two Estes motors for the day and we had each built a small Estes kit (E2X) the week prior. After most scouts fly their rocket once, I went around and gather as many of their "second" motors that they weren't very interested in flying. By the end of the day, I flew over 13 times and enjoyed every minute of it. I noticed that other adults were walking around with MASSIVE (at the time) rockets, and really wanted to know how I could build one. Once I got home, I told all of my friends how much fun it was and before the month was over, I started a rocketry club at my high school, Adolfo Camarillo High School. We would later go on to compete in TARC, the Team America Rocketry Challenge, but due to weather and other issues were not able to be very successful there. During that time I earned my Junior Level One certification from NAR and started building and learning about larger rockets. Through many online resources such as The Rocketry Forum, and Rocketry Planet, I was able to connect with many other rocketeers around the world. My senior year of high school we were prepared to try our third and final attempt at TARC. Many of our members though that we could do something bigger and better, and so we pooled our budget and made the decision to try to build the highest altitude rocket we could. Along with our incredible woodshop teach, Mr. Dave Seidler, we constructed a custom 3 inch diameter all carbon fiber rocket. This rocket we flew to 32,000 ft and then to 36,000ft before the end of the school year. It was an incredible feat by an amazing group of high school students. But like most hobbies, the projects never get smaller, and by then I was already working on a 20 inch diameter monster that would be used for my Level 3 certification (the highest level). It would end up weighing over 150 pounds, and to today, it is the only vehicle I have flown that weighed more than me. After I graduated from high school, I would work on Project 60K with a fellow collegue, a rocket whose goals were to fly a N5800, the most powerful rocket motor at the time, as high and as fast as possible. With a flight that ended with more guts than glory, we had flown a rocket Mach 4, before a catastrophic failure broke the vehicle up at 10,000ft. I