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A group of undergraduates launched what is likely the first-ever student designed and student-built rocket past the boundary of space, the University of Southern California (USC) announced today (May 22). Their achievement, if confirmed, completes a decade-long informal competition among engineering schools worldwide to create the first university rocket to achieve spaceflight, officials from USC's Rocket Propulsion Laboratory said in a statement.
Internal analysis shows the students' vehicle, called Traveler IV, crossed the Karman Line that represents the international boundary of space at an altitude of 62 miles (100 kilometers). The analysis confirmed the achievement with 90% certainty, USC officials added.
Students - Rocket - April - New - Mexico
Students launched the rocket April 21 from New Mexico's Spaceport America, where future space-tourism provider Virgin Galactic is the anchor tenant. The rocket successfully flew aloft at 7:30 a.m. local time, reaching a maximum recorded altitude of 339,800 feet (64.4 miles, or 103.6 km), and a top speed of 3,386 mph (5,449 km/hr).
Related: Virgin Galactic Moving Test Flights to New Mexico to Prep for Commercial Operation
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Scroll through views of the record-breaking launch here.
Achievement - Traveler - IV - Student-designed-and-built
"[The achievement] makes Traveler IV the first entirely student-designed-and-built...
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