SJSU Is Providing Hands-On Rocketry Experience to Its Students

Apr 5, 2024 9:30 AM ET

In most engineering programs around the world, students only learn how to design things on paper. But the rocketry program at San José State University (SJSU) is different. Not only do its students get to design airplanes and spacecraft rockets, but they also have an opportunity to build them, test them in the lab, and actually go out and launch them.

The SJSU Rocketry Program has a long tradition of hands-on learning, especially in aeronautics and aerospace engineering. It starts with building simple rockets and evolves all the way up to complex multi-stage rockets designed to travel 25 miles toward space. The experience students gain allows them to compete at the Spaceport America Cup, the world’s largest intercollegiate rocket engineering competition.

However, designing a rocket is a challenging, multifaceted project. The SJSU students get involved with all the different aspects of building a rocket, from the avionics to the parachute deployments. These lead to many safety challenges as well as many expenses.

Cadence computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software helps SJSU’s students be as precise in their prediction of rocket performance as possible. With Cadence CFD technology, they can make detailed designs, enabling them to swap out materials, for example, without having to buy and build a design with that material. It also helps them understand the safety of their design in a much more detailed fashion. As a result, there’s a lot less expense and risk for SJSU’s students.

Dr. Sheryl Ehrman, Done Beall Dean of the College of Engineering at SJSU, said, “San Jose State has had a great relationship with Cadence over the years. We really appreciate this partnership. It's part of the reason why our students are so valued in Silicon Valley.”

Learn more about how SJSU is providing hands-on rocketry experience with Cadence CFD.

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