We've made a number of changes since our near launch attempt in Utah, most of them aimed at assembling the completed recovery system for parachute deployment more quickly and simply.
The largest and most exciting change will be radio controlled relays for arming both altimeters and our own electronics system – an improvement which eliminates the need for a physical arming switch to be pulled when the rocket is in its launch configuration on the pad.
Because there will be a lot of hustle and bustle around the rocket prior to launch, remote arming helps streamline the process. Additionally, a short range audio system will allow us to monitor the tones emitted by the altimeters prior to launch and identify any problems from the bunker.
The wiring carrying the current for the ejection charges has been covered in filler, and is nearly ready for a final layer of fiberglass. If everything goes to schedule, the recovery airframe should be painted by the end of the week.
Kris Orbellos secures the outer wiring prior to addition of the filler in the above video clip. The pull-away connectors transferring the deployment current from the electronics sled in the nosecone to the airframe, and eventually to the charges located on the central recovery bulkhead, are housed inside the pink shells in the photo below.
Overall, the pace looks good, but it's better to be ahead of schedule, so I'll be on rocket-duty all tomorrow to try and stay on track.