AF museum’s rocket team awarded first place in Ohio Cup

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force’s 2020-2021 rocket team was recently awarded first place in the Ohio Cup rocket competition.

The Ohio Cup, which is organized by the Wright Stuff Rocketeers, is a rocket event for teams from Ohio that compete in The American Rocketry Challenge (TARC).

“Team Titan,” was one of three teams that competed on May 1 in the Ohio Cup and finished in first place after earning a score of 25.18. (A perfect score of zero is rarely achieved). The parameters for the Ohio Cup are the same as TARC – reach an altitude of 800 feet and stay aloft for 40-43 seconds. Teams strive for the lowest possible score and receive one point for every foot over or under 800 feet, and four points for every 1/100 of a second over or under that time frame. In addition, the team must launch and safely recover one raw egg.

The team, which was coached by National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Educator Cindy Henry, along with volunteer assistants Ron Stauffer and Bruce Lerner, included Beavercreek High School 10th grader Harrison Jacob, who served as team captain; Centerville High School 10th grader Aditya Anand; Springboro High School 10th grader Adam Bellware; Troy High School 10th grader Olondo Dillard; Beavercreek High School 11th grader Shourjo Ganguli; and Ferguson Hall Freshman School (Beavercreek) 9th grader Noah Hall.

“Team Titan” is now awaiting word to see if they will qualify for the TARC National Finals, which occur next month.

According to Henry, it was a great honor to coach such a talented group of young men, but it was truly a team effort.

“The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is very proud of ‘Team Titan’ for their hard work in designing, building and launching a rocket that was capable of meeting all the goals of the rocketry challenge,” said Henry. “The dedication of our team, as well as all of the other TARC teams, proves that we have some very bright young people leading us into the future. We would like to thank the team coaches, as well as the team parents for their time and support of this venture.”

This is the third year Henry has coached a TARC team hosted by the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. While Henry is delighted by the team’s accomplishments this year, winning is not the most important thing to her.

“The museum’s goal is to increase students’ knowledge in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), while teaching rocketry principles and the engineering design process,” said Henry. “During these last few months, these young men came together as a group and learned how to function as a team by using critical thinking skills, various problem solving techniques, and a lot of perseverance!”

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is currently accepting applications for students entering grades 9 through 12 to apply to be a member of the museum’s 2021-2022 TARC team. Additional information is available at

Materials for this program are provided through the generosity of the Air Force Museum Foundation Inc. (Federal endorsement is not implied).

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 350 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year thousands of visitors from around the world come to the museum. For more information, visit

Masks no longer required for fully vaccinated museum visitors

By Rob Bardua

National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

In support of updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, visitors who fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (who are at least two weeks beyond their final dose) are no longer required to wear masks when visiting the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.

Those who are not fully vaccinated must continue to wear masks inside the museum.

Visitors will not be asked by museum officials to prove their vaccination status, and those who wish to continue wearing masks may still do so. In addition, cleaning procedures, sneeze guards at volunteer and cashier desks, and hand sanitizer stations will remain in place throughout the museum.

According to National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Director David Tillotson, this change is a major step forward, and the museum will rely on individual integrity and mutual respect to prevail as the new policy is implemented.

“Exactly 14 months ago, we had to make the difficult decision to temporarily close the museum in order to protect the health and safety of visitors, staff and volunteers from COVID-19,” said Tillotson. “Although we were able to re-open the museum with the mask requirement last July, we recognized that restriction caused many to delay or postpone their visit. Now, due the steady decline of incidence rate and low plateau of new cases, we are thrilled to be able to take this next step forward in allowing those who are fully vaccinated to once again enjoy the museum without having to wear masks.”

Please note: Springfield Street, the road that leads to the museum’s entrance, is undergoing construction through the beginning of September. Expect lane reductions and some delays. Please follow the signs and instructions provided by the road crews.

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