Early College High School (ECHS) science teacher Michael Nichols won a $500 grant funded by Boeing to help purchase a theodolite. The instrument measures two angles: elevation and azimuth, to calculate winds aloft as a balloon ascends.
As a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nichols submitted the approved proposal so that his students would have a better understanding of Trigonometry applied to measuring wind velocity for rocket launches.
Rocket club and physics students will use this information to help recover their rockets as they parachute back towards a small campus playground.
“This is our first year for the rocket club at ECHS,” said Nichols. “The kids first learned how to calculate the maximum height the rocket travels and now they are building their rockets. We hope to purchase the theodolite just as soon as the grant money arrives.”