Firefly International Rocketry Event or FIRE 2019 is a match type competition for model rockets from Ukrainian and American teams. It took place on March 7-9. The event was organized by Noosphere, Firefly Aerospace, Ukrainian Spacemodelling Sports Federation, and National Rocketry Association of USA. The event was held at Firefly’s test site in Briggs, Texas.
The Ukrainian team was represented by Denis Khmil, Olga Khmil, Sergey Serdyukov, Valery Bidovsky, Alexander Radchenko, Michael Ryabokon. The team brought its rockets from Ukraine.
As a result of the competition, the American team took over all the overall rankings.
In the end, the American team took the overall awards, but the Ukrainian team seized some awards:
- Valery Bidovsky took first place in S6A / P class (flight duration with ribbon)
- Olga Khmil took second place in S2 class (rocket models for flight altitude with loads)
- Sergey Serdyukov got the third place in S2 class (rocket models for flight altitude with loads)
- Alexander Radchenko got the third place in S7 class (multistage large-scale copies of real rockets)
Altogether, 18 rocketry athletes took part in the FIRE 2019 competitions.
Noosphere and Firefly are planning to make this a recurring competition and invite more countries, according to Micahel Ryabokon, a co-founder of Noosphere and first VP of Ukrainian Spacemodelling Sport Federation. “We’re also planning to organize world championships here in 2022,” said Mr. Ryabokon of the planned expansion.