The United Launch Alliance Future Heavy – World’s Largest Sport Rocket – Will Launch on June 24 at 9:30am MT at the First Annual Spaceport America Cup

Spectators are welcome for Spaceport America Cup launch days:  Thursday, June 22nd, Friday, June 23rd and Saturday, June 24th Spaceport America’s vertical launch area will be open to the public at 7:30am each day. Admission is $10.00 for one day and $20.00 for a three-day pass. Buy your ticket today as space is limited: Food and beverage are available for purchase. (Please see additional information below)


United Launch Alliance Announces Payloads to Fly on World’s Largest Sport Rocket – 53-Foot-Tall Future Heavy

Launch Scheduled for June 24 at Spaceport America, New Mexico

Centennial, Colo., (May 24, 2017) – Sixteen payloads from K-12 schools and educational organizations throughout Colorado have been confirmed to fly on United Launch Alliance’s Future Heavy intern rocket this summer. The 53-foot-tall, high-power sport rocket launch will take place at Spaceport America, New Mexico, on Saturday, June 24, during its annual Spaceport American Cup International Intercollegiate Rocket Engineering Competition in association with ESRA the Experimental Sounding Rocket Association.

Since 2009, ULA has teamed up with Ball Aerospace to offer its interns a real-world space industry experience by launching rockets and payloads (onboard instruments/experiments deployed after launch) they volunteer to build during their internships. In 2010, the program expanded to include payloads from K-12 students.

“Unique opportunities such as this help ignite the imagination of our future rocket scientists. The important life lessons of planning, teamwork and hard work to ensure the payloads are built on-time and function as designed, will translate directly to their future endeavors.”
– Tory Bruno, ULA president and CEO

Examples of the payloads are:

  • Peak to Peak Charter School Payloads– Lafayette, CO
    • Make it or Break It
    •  Kindergarten Parachutes
    • Kevlar Cases: Reliable Phone Protection
    • Descent Power Recovery System
    • Folding Wing Glider
  • Boulder High School Payloads – Boulder, CO
    • America’s Ride Back from Space
    • Falling in 360 Video
  • STEM Academy Payload –  Highlands Ranch, CO
    • Round Two Design Two (R2D2)
  • Smokey Hill Area Robotics Club Payload – Centennial, CO
    • MARVIn – Multiple Advanced Reentry Vehicles Inside
  • Girl Scouts of Colorado Rocketry Team Payload – Colorado Springs, CO
    • G Swarm
    •  Team 2
  • Boy Scout Troop 127 Payload – Aurora, CO
    • EDGE (Eagles Deserving Gratitude for Excellence)
  • Eaglecrest High School Payloads – Centennial, CO
    • Raptor View
  • Crown Point Academy Payloads – Westminster, CO
    • Flying Zucchini, 8th Grade
    • Little Rockets, 4th Grade
  • STEM School Payload – Highlands Ranch, CO
“We are thrilled to provide the launch platform for these bright students to perform their research and experiments. It is an amazing time to be in the space industry. ULA is transforming the launch industry and these students will be the innovators and designers that will develop new technologies not yet imagined.”
– Greg Arend, ULA mentor and leader of the launch project

Arend recently received the Distinguished Engineering Educator Award by the Engineers’ Council for his work with ULA’s intern rocket program over the last five years. Over that time, hundreds of interns across all five of ULA’s sites participated in this unique, hands-on STEM activity and worked to build Future Heavy, the world’s largest high-powered sport rocket.

Additional Spectator Information:
Rocket engineering teams from universities across the USA and eleven other countries will be launching and recovering rockets all three days. Spectators are welcome to come and join in the excitement. There will be viewing areas set up and teams will be able to show off their rockets after recovery. This event is recommended for children 6 years and older due to outdoor conditions. Please don’t forget to bring your own lawn chair, sunscreen, water, and hat. You are welcome to bring your own hand held umbrellas. No coolers, alcohol, drugs, weapons or non–service animals are allowed on site. Food and beverage will be available for sale. Buy your ticket today as space is limited!

Spaceport America highly recommends all vehicles travel to site via Truth or Consequences, NM on NM-51, turning South at Engle on A013 and then East on A039 into the site entrance. It takes approximately 50 minutes to drive from TorC to the site entrance.  All adult spectators will be required to present government issued photo-ID. Questions:  575-267-8500