Press Release

Top Teams Set for Final Round of the Team America Rocketry Challenge

By SpaceRef Editor
April 12, 2009
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Top Teams Set for Final Round of the Team America Rocketry Challenge

The top 100 student rocketry teams in the country are ready for the final round of competition of the Team America Rocketry Challenge next month after AIA announced the qualifiers for the fly-off on Friday.

The seventh annual TARC – the world’s largest rocket contest – will take place May 16 at Great Meadow in The Plains, Va. The final competition gives middle and high school students a chance to earn part of a total prize package of $60,000 in scholarships and other prizes.

The list of finalists is available at A total of 653 teams from 45 states and the District of Columbia took part in the qualifying rounds of competition.

“An impressive number of teams took part in the initial round of the competition,” AIA President and CEO Marion Blakey said. “I am looking forward to seeing how these young finalists – hopefully many of whom will be future employees – respond to this year’s challenge.”

The teams design, build and launch model rockets with a raw-egg payload that must return to the ground unbroken. This year’s contest goals are an altitude of 750 feet and a flight time of 45 seconds. The rockets must transport the egg laid horizontally to mimic the position of an astronaut.

AIA co-sponsors the event with the National Association of Rocketry in conjunction with NASA, the Defense Department, the American Association of Physics Teachers and 34 AIA member companies. The goal of the contest is to bolster student interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics – STEM – education in an effort to attract young people to aerospace careers.

Two AIA companies provide premium prizes. Raytheon will once again provide a fully paid trip for the winning team to the International Paris Air Show in June. And Lockheed Martin will provide $5,000 scholarships to each of the top three teams. NASA also invites top teams to participate in advanced rocketry programs.

For more information about TARC, visit

SpaceRef staff editor.