Here’s a do-it-yourself project for you this weekend. All you need is an iPhone 4S, a low-power Bluetooth sensor, a balsa wood cradle, a 24-inch Nylon Parachute, an iOS program created in techBASIC, and tons of hard work. Mike Westerfield, who authored the project, says that he wanted to create a rocket that can collect data such as acceleration, rotation, altitude, and pressure. Westerfield used a standard booster and glued plugs into the payload tube. Inside the payload is a balsa wood holder for the iPhone and SensorTag.


In case you were wondering, the SensorTag is actually a Bluetooth development kit for wireless sensor applications and it is manufactured by TI. The next crucial step will be to download the software package that he prepared and to “copy and paste” the contents into the techBASIC program.

Westerfield also used a 24 -inch nylon parachute to support the rocket upon landing. Westerfield has launched the rocket a couple of times already, as seen in the video above. “The rocket lifted off smoothly, arcing into the air. The parachute deployed. Landing broke off a fin, but pulling the payload out, I saw the iPhone was still working, still collecting acceleration, rotation and pressure,” he writes on his blog. To learn more about the iPhone-operated rocket, you can visit Mike Westerfield’s blog.

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