The University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute will host “Rockets and Gold,” an open house at the Poker Flat Research Range Thursday, July 18 from 4 to 8 p.m. Admission is free and is open to all ages.
Poker Flat is located at Mile 30 on the Steese Highway north of Fairbanks. Geophysical Institute and range personnel will be available for tours of the launching facilities. Model rockets and unmanned aircraft will be displayed and guests will learn about the history of rocket research in Alaska.
Since opening in 1969, many sounding rockets have been launched at the range. Recently, the operations of the facility have expanded to include a fleet of unmanned aircraft. To date, Poker Flat is still the world’s only university-owned rocket range. The “Rockets and Gold” event is being held in conjunction with the 2013 Fairbanks Golden Days celebration. The range is placed in the heart of the Chatanika gold-mining district.