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A) Will having the cap on or off of the bottle on our rocket affect how far it flies?

B) If the cap in on the rocket, then it should travel farther than if the cap is not on the rocket. We
think this because having the cap on will reduce the drag on the rocket. The air that is going into
the top bottle will slow it down, so having the cap on will increase speed.
The cap affects how far the rocket will travel if it is on or off of the top bottle.
Trial 1 (m) Trial 2 (m) Trial 3 (m) Average Distance
Cap On 19 27 20 22
Cap Off 9.5 18 9 12.16
Source: Josh S., Anna V. , May 7, 2010.
D) Our rocket also has variables that must be the same on every trial in order for the experiment to
turn out correctly. The first variable is size of both bottles. The larger, bottom bottle is a 2 liter.
This stays constant throughout all of our experimentation. It will also provide a constant limit
for the water and air pressure we can put into it. The second variable is the size of our fins we
will use one our rocket. They are going be 13 cm. vertical by 8 cm. horizontal. The shape of the
fins will be as close to a right triangle as possible, so they will be as stable as possible when the
rocket is launched. The third controlled variable with the rocket is the amount of fins the rocket
will have. We are going to use 3 fins evenly spaced around the outside of the bottle, so the
weight will be balanced and the rocket will fly straighter through the air. Number four of the
controlled variables is the launch angle of 45º. The angle was chosen because it is exactly
halfway between fly straight along the ground and going straight up. If done correctly, this
should provide maximum distance for the rocket. Finally, the fifth variable. It is going to be the
75 psi of air pressure in the 2 liter. The bottle will be filled to this point because 75 psi is a
pressure the bottle can handle safely, and will provide adequate lift for the rocket launching off
of the pad.

E) The materials needed are the following: a 2 liter plastic bottle, a 20oz. plastic bottle, duct tape,
cardboard, a protractor, a ruler, water, a launching station, and an air compressor. The ruler is
used for measuring the dimensions of the fins, and the protractor is for making sure the angle is
90º, or as close as possible. The water is used as a form of propellant for the rocket, like fuel in
a rocket or gas in a car. The launching station is used to hold the rocket in place at a steady
angle while the air compressor pumps 75 psi of air pressure into the 2 liter.

F) Take a 2 liter bottle, a 20 oz. Bottle, and duct tape. Tape the two bottles together with their
opens ends facing away from each other. Take 3 6 by 4, right triangle wings and tape them to
the sides of the bottle, with duct tape, in evenly spaced intervals. Fill the top bottle with 100ml.
of water, and fill the bottom bottle with 250ml. of water. Places the rocket on the launching
platform, and launch the rocket with the cap. Record the totally distance traveled. Repeat the
launching process without the cap, and record results.
Distances the rocket flew with Cap on/off


Distance flown (meters) Average

15 distance with
cap on
distance with
cap off

H) From what data we gathered, our hypothesis is correct. When our rocket was launched, it went
22 meters away from the launch pad. This is 9.84 meters farther than the average distance of a
rocket launched with the cap on. If we could change on thing, however, it would be the way the
rocket is built, and I could, I would change how the air pressure is released out of the end of the
bottle. Since liquid matter, like water, flows faster in a smaller space, a nozzle of some sort
could be fitted to the end of the two liter, and that cone would channel the water into a smaller
space. This creates a faster speed of the water exiting the rocket, and this would provide more
thrust. In turn, this increase in thrust would propel the rocket farther than if there wasn't a
nozzle present. From there, we would proceed normally and record the necessary data.