With bright pops and trailing screams, hand-built rockets fly toward the sun in graceful (occasionally precarious) arcs. High school students from across the country huddle together anxiously, waiting for their turns to compete in the Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC). The task is not easy: Each rocket has to propel two eggs to an altitude of 800 feet and return them safely to the ground within 43 to 48 seconds.

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