Suborbital Atmospheric Balloon Elevated Rocket

What is SABER?

The Suborbital Atmospheric Balloon Elevated Rocket (SABER) is a university student developed space launch vehicle. This vehicle uses a high altitude launch to maximize range. Our system uses a single stage rocket powered by a student researched and designed solid rocket motor launched from zero pressure balloon. The mission objective is to take 2-5 kilogram payloads to altitudes of 70-110 kilometers. SABER utilizes amateur rocket architecture combined with ballooning to lower development time and reduce costs.


How does it work?

SABER uses a unique balloon launch platform to increase the range of standard high power rocket systems.

The balloon will lift a launch platform and rocket above the atmosphere to remove drag.  From this height the rocket will ignite and begin a suborbtial trajectory to edge of space, 100km.

This novel launch systems combines the best of SHC's ballooning and rocket skills to accomplish its mission.


Rocket Booster

The rocket stands at 3m (~10ft) tall, and uses a solid fuel single staged motor to boost its payload on the suborbital trajectory.

Propellent is designed at UAH by our SRAD team. With 22kg (~49lbs) of propellant, this vehicle achieves a burnout speed of Mach 4 at its high altitude launch.

Vehicle is fully recoverable with a two stage drogue and main chute. It houses room for a 3U volume of payload at 1-5kg (11lbs) mass.


Launch Platform

To launch the rocket boost a special airborne launch platform is being developed by SHC.  This platform houses the rocket during its several hour ascent through the atmosphere and provides a stable launch base.

The platform is fully recoverable using a dual chute deployment system located on either side of the launch rails.

Our system is modular and simplistic using rail mounts and a stable multipoint mounting  to the balloon envelop.


Balloon System

The lift the launch platform and rocket booster a zero-pressure balloon is used.  Using thin plastic and helium this envelop will be the first stage of SABER's launch system.

SHC is researching manufacturing methods to develop these balloons in-house opening up cost effective methods to launch heavy payloads.


Want to join?

Let us know if you want to be a part of UAH's space launch vehicle development!

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