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Student Launch


8 students from University of North Carolina standing in front of Grigg Hall holding "Charlotte" rocket

Student Launch challenges student teams to design, build and fly a high-powered rocket containing a science or engineering payload. Teams complete a series of design reviews that mirror the NASA engineering design life cycle. Teams must successfully complete a Preliminary Design Review, Critical Design Review, Flight Readiness Review and Launch Readiness Review, which include safety briefings, analyses of vehicle and payload systems and flight test data.

*Event Date(s):

Request for Proposal released: Aug. 18

Proposal deadline: Sept. 20

Selections Announced: Oct. 5

Preliminary Design Reviews: Nov. 2021 

Critical Design Reviews: Jan. 2022 

Flight Readiness Reviews: Mar. 2022 

Event Week: Apr. 20-24, 2022 

Winners Announced: May/June 2022 

*Subject to Change

Event Location

Two options in 2021-2022 — NASA Launch Complex (with NASA in Huntsville, Alabama) or a commercial spaceport launch site (i.e. a local launch field).


  • Open to teams from U.S. colleges and universities, high schools and middle schools. Note: High school and middle school teams must first qualify by placing in the top 25 of The American Rocketry Challenge or the top 3 of the Rockets For Schools Class II competition. A high school and middle school educator or mentor from each qualified team must participate in the summer Advanced Rocketry Workshop.
  • Open to U.S. citizens and international students. *Any foreign national team members must be identified by the PDR and may or may not have access to certain activities during launch week due to security restrictions.
  • Requires an adult mentor as a team member throughout the project.

Visit the website to learn more about the challenge.

Get Started!



Last Updated
Mar 01, 2023
Loura Hall

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