Qu8k Hits Stratosphere, Wins Carmack Micro Prize
A few years back, a group of allegedly amateur rocket scientists launched their unmanned homemade Qu8K (pronounced “quake”) rocket from the Black Rock Desert in Nevada. It reached 121,000 feet, or 22.91 miles, which is just 200,000 feet short of space. The rocket reached its zenith in 92 seconds, giving it an average speed of 1,315 ft./s or 896 miles per hour.
The team was a participant in the 100ft Micro Prize competition for a $10,000 prize offered by computer game developer John Carmack. The rocket was required to reach 100,000 feet (30,480m), deploy a parachute and be recovered intact back on earth.
According to the Qu8k team, the cost of preparing and launching its rocket turned out to be significantly more than the prize they received.
The following video shows the launch.