This weekend were the finals for the annual Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC) held in Great Meadow, Virginia just outside Washington, DC. In its ninth year, the event is hosted by the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) and the National Association of Rocketry (NAR), among others.
The competition seems to keep growing every year, with more than 7,000 students from around the United States competing to participate in the Washington, DC finals. If you have never gone, you should. And if your kids like science, encourage them to participate next year.
A team from Rockwall-Heath High School in Heath, Texas won first place this year. I had planned to go this year but was was unable to do so. The competition is a worthwhile effort that, if they stick with it, will help create a future generation of aerospace experts right here in the United States.
There are other competitions like it, but, I believe this may be this may be the only one on the East Coast, certainly in this area, that generates a lot of participation from industry and the U.S. Government. The folks down at Wallops have one as well.
A lot of folks do not know it but Virginia has its own space port, the Virginia Commercial Space Flight and Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS). It’s not the Kennedy Space Center or Space Center Houston, but the facility at Wallops Island, created in 1995 by the Virginia Assembly, is making its own history and the business is growing.