2024 Finalists Announced: 100 Teams to Compete in Largest Student Rocket Contest in the World

Arlington, Va. (April 17, 2024) – Today, the Aerospace Industries Association’s American Rocketry Challenge announced the 100 teams that successfully launched model rockets to exacting requirements and earned their ticket to this year’s National Finals. Finalists will compete for $100,000 in prizes and the title of National Champion, which includes an all-expenses-paid trip to London for the International Rocketry Challenge in July. Already the world’s largest student rocketry competition, the 2024 American Rocketry Challenge witnessed a surge in participation, as a record-breaking 922 teams entered the competition in its 22nd year.

“For over two decades, the American Rocketry Challenge has empowered students in STEM, propelling the next generation of engineers, scientists, and visionaries. The challenge has been a true force in driving talent to the aerospace industry,” said Eric Fanning, Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) President and CEO. “A record number of teams applied to this year’s competition — remarkable students who will one day shape the trajectory of how we move, connect, and explore and take us higher, faster, and farther than ever before. I congratulate our top 100 finalists and look forward to seeing which team’s creativity and resourcefulness will earn them the title of National Champion.”

The American Rocketry Challenge invites middle and high school students to design, build, and launch model rockets while meeting strict criteria. This year’s competition featured more than 5,000 middle and high school students from 922 teams and 45 states. The 100 finalists will compete on May 18 for the title of National Champion at Great Meadow in The Plains, Virginia, about 45 miles west of Washington, DC. In addition to the $100,000 prize pool, the top 25 teams will automatically earn spots in NASA’s Student Launch Challenge.

To qualify for the National Finals, participating teams designed, built, and launched model rockets that could safely carry a payload of one raw egg with a target flight duration of 43-46 seconds and an altitude of 820 feet. The requirements for the National Finals will be modified to introduce a new challenge to the teams.

Sponsored by AIA, the National Association of Rocketry, and more than 20 industry partners, the American Rocketry Challenge is the world’s largest student rocketry competition and the aerospace and defense industry’s flagship program designed to encourage students to pursue study and careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The competition has inspired nearly 95,000 middle and high school students to explore education and careers in STEM fields.

The American Rocketry Challenge fosters friendly competition among teams from diverse backgrounds, ethnicities, and geographies. Many teams have initiated fundraising campaigns within their communities to enable their participation in the challenge. Additionally, the American Rocketry Challenge provides $2,000 STEM Innovation Grants to eligible Title I schools, empowering them to establish their own rocketry teams.

See the top 100 teams here: https://rocketcontest.org/result/2024-finalists