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HPR Level 1-3 Certification

 
 
Overview
CAR was created in 1965 as an advocate of the model rocketry hobby. Over the past three decades the hobby has grown to encompass rocket motor types and performance unavailable to the modeler at the CAR's inception. In response to this growth the CAR offers a certification process which permits individuals to purchase and use rocket motors whose physical constraints and performance exceed traditional model rocket boundaries. Rocket motors which exceed model rocketry motor definitions and the models that use these motors are collectively referred to as High Power Rocketry.

Certification for High Power Rocketry consists of four progressive levels:
  • Level 1 allows the purchase and use of H impulse class motors.
  • Level 2 allows the purchase and use of I impulse class solid motors and hybrid rocket motors.
  • Level 3 allows the purchase and use of J,K and L impulse class rocket motors and hybrid rocket motors.
The procedures for Level 1, 2 and Level 3 certification are documented below.
  • Level 4 Certification requires in-process reviews of the certification model design and construction prior to flight. Level 4 certification is covered in an application separate from the Level 1, 2 and Level 3 paperwork. Refer to the CAR High Power Rocket Level 4 Certification Process section for the Level 4 certification process.
Please note that the CAR high power certification is only one consideration when purchasing and using high power rocket motors. Compliance with local, NRCan ( Natural Resources Canada ) and TC ( Transport Canada ) federal regulations is also required.

High power certification is intended to provide a measure of the modeler's competence to avoid gross violations of good modeling practice and safe model operation. The program is not foolproof. A single demonstration of a modeler's skills does not guarantee consistent safe performance. The certification program does not replace the application of safe handling practices and common sense.
 
Minimum Requirements
The individual seeking high power certification must be a minimum of 18 years old at the time of certification. A driver's license or a birth certificate is an acceptable proof of age.

The individual must be a member in good standing with the Canadian Association of Rocketry (CAR) at the time of certification. Evidence of CAR membership will be requested prior to the certification attempt. Acceptable evidence of membership includes the CAR membership card, a canceled check indicating payment of membership fees, or participation in a CAR event where membership status is verified and indicated on the event materials.

Motors used for certification attempts must be currently certified by either the NAR or other organizations (e.g. Tripoli) with a recognized certification program and be accepted by NRCan or covered under a general importation permit issued by NRCan. Hybrid motors used shall be approved by TC. Manufacturer's designations, not certification test data, will be used to identify suitability for the certification level being attempted (e.g. an H128 is an H, a G75 is a G).
 
Certification Teams
The certification team consists of two individuals who are senior members ( over the age of 18 ) in good standing in the CAR. The certification teammembers must be unrelated to the applicant. Members of other organizations, unless they are also members of the CAR, cannot participate on a certification team.

At least one of the team members must be already certified to a level equal to the certification level being attempted, e.g. a team member must be certified at Level 1 to judge another individual's Level 1 certification attempt.

Level 1 certifications may be administered by a single CAR Level 2 certified individual. The two certified individuals requirement is waived in this case.

Certification attempts must be witnessed in person by the certification team. Video recordings of a certification flight are not acceptable.
 
Certification Process and Documentation
Certification may be accomplished at any launch where sufficient individuals meeting the requirements of the paragraph below are available.

The launch must be conducted in accordance with a valid Rocket ( High Power ) Launch Authorization issued by Transport Canada. All conditions and restrictions imposed by Transport Canada must be satisfied and followed.

The individual attempting certification must complete a CAR High Power Certification Application prior to his certification attempt. If Level 2 certification is desired the individual must provide proof of previous Level 1 certification. Proof of previous certification includes a copy of the high power certification affidavit or a CAR membership card showing the Level 1 certification level.

The high power rocket will be subjected to a safety inspection by the RSO or Rocket Inspector prior to flight. The safety inspection form is on the back of the CAR High Power Certification Application and is also available seperately. During the safety inspection the modeler will be expected to orally answer technical questions related to the safety and construction of his/her model. The questions may include (but are not limited to) identification of the model's center of gravity and center of pressure, methods used to determine model stability, and interpretation of the rocket motor's designation. The certification team will sign the form indicating approval to continue with the launch.

The individual will fly his model. The flight must be witnessed by the certification team members. Stability, deployment of the recovery system, and safe recovery should be considered when evaluating safety of the flight. Models experiencing a catastrophic failure of either the airframe, rocket motor and/or recovery system (e.g. shock cord separation) will not be considered as having a successful qualifying flight.

The model must be returned to the certification team after flight and be inspected to verify engine retention and for evidence of flight induced damage. The certification team will initial the blocks indicating that a safe flight was made and that the post flight inspection was satisfactory.

The certification team will sign the certification sheet to indicate that the certification attempt was successfully completed. The certification sheet is normally returned to the certifying individual after the flight. At club launches or CAR sponsored activities (e.g. CARNAT, SAM) the certification sheets may be retained by the event sponsors to be sent to CAR Headquarters as a group. In that event, the certification form is not returned to the certifying individual.

The certification sheets and High Power written tests (if applicable) are returned to CAR Headquarters. A $5.00 fee is required per form. The certification sheets must be returned by the certified individual or the event sponsors to CAR Headquarters to allow updating the CAR database. A new CAR membership card will be issued showing the certification level upon receipt of the certification paperwork.

Falsification of data or statements by the certifying individual will result in revocation of the high power certification and membership in CAR. Falsification of data or statements by the certification team, e.g. failure to secure a Transport Canada launch authorization, can result in revocation of the team member(s) CAR memberships.
 
Level 1 High Power Certification
- H Impulse (160.01 to 320.00 Newtons seconds impulse)

The modeler must demonstrate his ability to build and fly a rocket containing at least one H impulse class motor. Cluster or staged models used for certification may not contain over 320.00 Newton seconds total impulse. Only certified motors are permitted. The modeler must assemble the reloadable motor, if used, in the presence of a certification team member.

A written examination is required to demonstrate knowledge of the regulations and laws pertaining to high power rocketry in Canada. Questions concerning basic rocket technical knowledge, e.g. center of pressure and center of gravity relationships, will also be included.
  • - The questions will come from a 50 to 100 question pool.
  • - Twenty-five of the questions will be related to Transport Canada Regulations, the applicant must answer all the Transport Canada questions correctly (passing grade is 100%).
  • - The balance of the questions have a passing grade of 75%.
  • - The test may be taken only once in a 30 day period.
  • - The test must be completed prior to the flight attempt.
  • - Tests will be graded before a certification attempt.
  • - The written test will not have to be repeated if the flight attempt is completed within 1 year of taking the written test.
  • - Tests are available from Area Directors, Club presidents, or CAR representatives at a HPR launch.
Tests will typically be provided to an area director, then supplied to the individual when the test is requested. Area directors or CAR officers can request a supply of tests from the above address.

Certification at this level permits single or multiple motor rocket flights with motors having a maximum total impulse of 320.00 Newton seconds (H Implulse).
 
Level 2 High Power Certification
- I Impulse (320.01 to 640.00 Newton seconds impulse)

The modeler must demonstrate his ability to build and fly a rocket containing one I impulse class motor. Cluster or staged models used for certification may not contain over 640.00 Newton seconds total impulse. Only certified motors are permitted. The modeler must assemble the reloadable or hybrid motor, if used, in the presence of a certification team member.

Certification at this level permits single or multiple motor rocket flights with motors having a maximum total impulse of 640.00 Newton seconds (I Impulse).
 
Level 3 High Power Certification
- J - L Impulse (640.01 to 5120.00 Newton seconds impulse)

The modeler must demonstrate his ability to build and fly a rocket containing one J, K or L impulse class motor. Cluster or staged models used for certification may not contain over 5120.00 Newton seconds total impulse. Only certified motors are permitted. The modeler must assemble the reloadable or hybrid motor, if used, in the presence of a certification team member

Typically the modeler will certify at Level 3 using a single J class motor and work up in power with experience. Although not required by this document it is the recommended method.

Certification at this level permits single or multiple motor rocket flights with motors having a maximum total impulse of 5120.00 Newton seconds (J-LI Impulse).
 
CAR Junior HPR Certification
In recognition of the fact that Junior (under the age of 18) members of CAR may desire to fly Hight Power Rocketry, CAR has developed the Junior Certification Program

Senior certification requires demonstrated skills and knowledge in three areas:
  • propulsion theory and knowledge of relevant regulations and safety codes
  • construction skills
  • motor handling, assembly, and use
Junior members can participate under the first two activities. But Federal ERD regulations prohibit junior participation in the third category. Junior certification tests the first two areas in the same manner that senior certifications are done: Exam for the first and airframe examination and RSO questioning on the second.

The junior member needs to be sponsored by a senior member holding a certification of at least the same level as that being attempted. This sponsor must be clearly aware and accept that they are assuming full responsibility and liability for the flight as if it were their own.

The Junior member writes the exam exactly the same as a senior member and builds and prepares the airframe himself or herself.

The Sponsoring senior member prepares and installs the motor.

The Junior member takes the rocket to the RSO for inspection, accompanied by the sponsor, where the RSO/RI examines the rocket and questions the junior member, same as for senior certification, except for in-depth motor knowledge. Otherwise the flight is conducted same as for senior certification:

Ages 14 to 16 - Junior member can certify CAR Level 1 and 2.

Ages 16 to 18 - Junior member can certify CAR Level 1, 2 and 3.

When the member turns 18, they must re-fly 1 rocket at the HIGHEST certification level achieved, selecting, building and installing the motor themselves, and if this flight is successful then they are given full certification at this level as a Senior CAR member.
 
Administrative Items
Tripoli and NAR Certifications CAR has a reciprocal agreement with the two Rocketry Associations in the US, Tripoli and NAR. What this means is that Tripoli and NAR HPR Certifications will be honoured at CAR Launches. Tripoli and NAR members must show evidence of their Certification level and membership prior to launching and they may fly to their current certification level, but not beyond. For example, a NAR flyer with a NAR Level 2 Certification would be able to fly up to a n L Impulse motor at a CAR-sponsored launch.

Canadian Tripoli members wishing to grandfather into CAR must:
  • Pay a CAR membership fee
  • Give evidence of certification
  • Complete the C.A.R. certification exam
 
Expired Memberships
Members do not lose their certifications levels if they do not renew their memberships.

Canadian Association of Rocketry - L'Association Canadienne De Fusťologie reserves the right to charge missed memebrship fees, charge an administration fee, and or to have other action taken as the Board sees fit.

Canadian Association of Rocketry - L'Association Canadienne De Fusťologie reserves the right to change this policy without notice.
 
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