The Rocket Doc
High Power Rocketry
I was a physician for over 25 years and joined the pharmaceutical industry in 2004. So, they call me Doc.  I began playing with rocket toys when I was 10. By the time I was 14, I had been doing black power rockets for a couple of years or so when I found Rocket Manual for Amateurs by Capt Bertrand Brinley. I got immediately into sugar fuel and powdered zinc and sulfur. Back then and for another 3 years I was building rockets with my friends made out of metal airframes and fins. Metal shop, wood shop and electrical shop in high school moved me right along. Things really slowed down in college (BSc, Chemistry), but I always built black powder rockets right through med school. Like so many of my rocketeer friends, we all settled into our professional lives and raising families. And like so many rocketeers, kids grow up and leave home. I was getting itchy back in 2009. My grandson, Gunnar, was 4. He was interested in rockets for some reason, so I bought a couple of Estes kits (Bull Pup and Patriot), and the "torch" was past to a new generation. I was a flight away from a rocket a day. I got on the internet, found high power rocketry, and the rest is history. I built an Initiator from Aerotech and joined the Superstition Spacemodeling Society out of Phoenix, AZ. I brought the rocket to one of the launches one Saturday anxious about my first mid power launch. I bought some little motor for it. I showed it to Dwain Desbien who said I needed something big. He found the biggest 29mm motor he had. "Go big or go home!", he said. I've been living by that motto ever since. Thanks Dwain! Maurice "Moe" Bertrand, whether he knows it or not, has been a mentor from the start, a great friend and photographer for my and many others' launches. This site is filled with his photos. Thanks Moe!  My L3CC Terry O'Brien, former President of the Superstition Spacemodeling Society, and Gerald "Skippy" Meux, Jr have been invaluable moving me to the top of the game. So, the site is dedicated to my grandson Gunnar, my rocket widow Kris, Moe, Dwain, Terry and Skippy. E-Mail The Rocket Doc

You have to start somewhere (Aerotech Initiator).

Photo Maurice "Moe" Bertrand

All Launch and Test Videos

The National Association of Rocketry (NAR)

The Superstition Spacemodeling Society (SSS Rocketry)
SSS is a chartered NAR Section – #506. The NAR supports all phases of rocketry, from 1/4A to high power. And it uniquely sponsors model rocket contests at the local, regional, and national levels.

Southern Arizona Rocketry Association (SARA)
SARA is the National Association of Rocketry section 545, formed in 1994 for those in Southern Arizona (e.g. Tucson and the rest of the state south of the Gila River). In October of 2005 SARA also became Tripoli Rocketry Association Prefecture 93.

Tripoli Rocketry Association (TRA)

Tripoli Phoenix (TRAPHX)
TRAPHX is Prefecture #47 of the Tripoli Rocketry Association (TRA). It is a club of like-minded individuals who have joined together in the pursuit of high power rocketry. Their main goals are to provide a safe, fun, inclusive environment for our members, which enable them to further their aims and purposes as related to high power rocketry.

Arizona High Power Rocketry Association

AHPRA was formed as a Tripoli Rocketry Association Prefecture to promote high power rocketry in Arizona. They host the annual BALLS launch at the Black Rock Desert in Nevada.


Level 3 Certification

Rainbow Valley, AZ
L3CC: Terry O'Brien
Witness: Gerald "Skippy" Meux, Jr
November 27, 2010
Aerotech M1297

General Dynamics AGM-78 Standard ARM




Flight 3

Tripoli Phoenix Eagle Eye launch Site
Aguila, AZ
January 24, 2015

Cesaroni N1800
General Dynamics AGM-78 Standard ARM

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April 29, 2012
Rainbow Valley, AZ

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With Terry O'Brien


Current Project

Rebuild of the Rathyeon (General Dynamics) RIM-67 Extended Range as the:

General Dynamics (Convair)SAM-N-7/RIM-2 Terrier


March 2015
New Sustainer 
Finished coupler
Mated with booster

General Dynamics (Convair) SAM-N-7/RIM-2 Terrier
Ground Testing

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