AdDU Rocketry Team Makes History, Launches PH Rocket “Sibol”

The Ateneo de Davao University rocketry team made history after they successfully launched their rocket “Sibol” at the Spaceport America Cup in New Mexico, USA.

Called Sibol (Filipino for growth), the 9.7-foot rocket surged 10,000 feet up as required and arced, heading back to earth with its payload of 8.8 pounds. Spaceport USA directors called it “a great achievement” for a first-timer team.

The PHL rocket was created in Davao City, specifically at ADDU — the only university in Mindanao that offers Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering (ASE).

“The launch is a victory for Filipinos who aim for excellence and innovation in space technology,” student lead Franz Guevara declared.

“The PHL rocket, which competed in the commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) 10,000-feet category, was recovered safely from the field,” recounted Dr. Rogel Mari D. Sese, Chair of the ADDU ASE Department and Lead Advisor of the ADDU Rocketry Team.

Spaceport America Cup is a design-build-fly competition as well as an academic conference for aerospace students, faculty members, and industry stalwarts, among others. It is based in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

The video of Sibol’s successful launch was a highlight of the University President’s Address at the ADDU College Commencement Exercises of some 1,300 graduates at the University’s Jacinto Campus in Davao City. “This is ADDU’s humble contribution to the development of space technology, which is crucial in our pursuit of sustainable development goals,” Rev. Fr. Karel S. San Juan, SJ said.

“We will continue developing better rockets and other space technologies that can contribute not only to academic research but also to the betterment of society and humanity,” Sese added.

The PHL team extends its gratitude to Philippine Airlines, the City Government of Davao, and US-based Filipino organizations for the unstinting support for this pioneering team.

“This historic competition is just the beginning for ADDU, Mindanao, and the Philippines. I would like to invite more partners to work with us on this mission,” Fr. San Juan said.

Text: ADDU Rocket Development Program FB page
Photo: Ateneo de Davao University