The Team

Bill Colburn ~ Project Director

Bill was born on a day when Robert Goddard and his crew were readying a rocket for flight at Roswell. From that point on, his entire life has been rocket propulsion. Bill started the third Amateur Rocket Group in California, following on the heels of Ed Sawyer’s Pacific Rocket Society and George James’ Reaction Research society. The Rocket Motor Research Society of Watsonville California was a prolific group, launching over 1200 rockets in their 20 years of existence. One of the rockets

launched was a Hypergolic (self igniting) Hybrid Rocket. That was prophetic, as years later Bill would become an expert on Hybrid Rocket Propulsion.

Bill was an Aerospace Engineer on the Apollo Lunar Project, designing some 5 mission critical pyro systems for the flights. Later Bill worked at Thiokol in the Advanced Design Group, then at Huntsville.

Bill has many patents in the field of propellants and pyrotechnics; a recent one is for a miniature fully cooled bi-propellant rocket motor.

Many see Bill as the “Father of Sugar Rocketry” from his experiments with sugar based propellants in his youth.

He recently has rewritten his Hybrid Manual and has made it available to rocketeers in the USA.

Bill is the Project leader of the SORAC Project and continues to design hybrid vehicles for this project as well as for others around the USA. The project endows other non-profit projects with design help and materials.

~ Bezel Sanders

Jeff Jakob ~ Co-Director