About Rockets
  Install the Simulator
  Start Your Journey
  Educator Section
  Aeronautics Guides
  Rocket Safety
  The Simulator

Water Rockets - A Virtual Aeronautics Exploration!



Water rockets are an excellent tool to learn about aerodynamics, propulsion, and rockets.

The Virtual Aeronautics Exploration introduces the principles of aeronautics behind water rockets and rocketry. The activities were developed for middle school students (grades 5-8) and align with National science, mathematics, and technology standards for education. The materials are also appropriate for grades 9-12 and lifelong learners.

The navigation panel is found on the left and will be in the same location on all pages.

  • About Rockets includes the history of rocketry and information on the parts of a bottle rocket, as well as a comparison of a water rocket and a NASA rocket.
  • Install the Simulator provides directions for installing the Java runtime engine and Java 3D.
  • Start Your Journey includes a hands-on experiment, a pre-test, and links to activities that will help you understand Laws of Motion, thrust, acceleration, stability, center of gravity, and drag.
  • Educator Section includes additional materials for educators to use to reinforce and extend the concepts presented in Rocket Research 101, 102, and 103.
  • Aeronautics Guides includes Beginner's Guides to Aerodynamics, Propulsion, Kites, and Model Rockets, including simulations.
  • Rocket Safety includes safety guidelines you should follow before, during, and after the launch of a water rocket.
  • The Simulator is a new water rocket simulation created using Java 3D and Java technologies. Use the simulator to design and launch water rockets before you build and launch the real thing!

When you have reviewed the background material in About Rockets, Start Your Journey!


Please review Rocket Safety before launching a water rocket.


Any comments, concerns, or questions should be addressed to:    

Developer: David Mazza    
Responsible NASA Official: Jo Ann Charleston    


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