Colloquially referred to as one of the hardest professions, rocket science is actually a common name for spacecraft/space-systems engineering. However, one can also generalize this to include all forms of rocketry, including rockets that are not capable of space travel.

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Smallest Possible rocket to get to space? [on hold]

I was wondering what is the smallest possible rocket to get to LEO. I know that rocket fuel accounts for 90% the total mass of the rocket. Lets say I have 500g of payload and my rocket is made from an ...
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8 views

What wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation are emitted by the LH2/LOX reaction?

Rocket engines such as the Rocketdyne Rocket System 68 and the Space Shuttle Main Engine use liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen as propellants. The exhaust from this type of engine is notable in ...
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27 views

Can an accelerometer be used to determine orientation of a rocket under power?

I saw a project on Hackaday featuring a model rocket with moveable fins to stabilize the rocket's trajectory: Hackaday. The goal was to arc the rocket to a horizontal trajectory and keep it there. In ...
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51 views

Can AMO physics be applicable for space travel? [closed]

I know it sounds very stupid question. I am a Ph.D student currently working on the AMO physics (Quantum Optics). I recently saw articles about the Spacex, and I thought it is really amazing, and ...
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60 views

Can we reverse the direction of a ballistic missiles [closed]

Is there any way that we can reverse the direction of a missile during war or fight. Just think if we make a platinum or hard metal structure like skate board ring ,the missile will fall on it and ...
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34 views

Question about Thrust; am I correct?

Basically, here's what I understand about Thrust: Thrust is a force. You get it by doing $v\times\frac{dM}{dT}$. Pretty basic, because that's the formula you're given. However, because I'm trying to ...
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62 views

How does rocket thrust work?

I can't seem to find a specific answer to this anywhere. I understand that in a rocket there is a chemical reaction that causes gas particles to leave the rocket at high velocity. By Newton's third ...
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42 views

Force of Gravity of a stationary object acting on another object moving through space

Story: I have x and y positions of a spaceship as it moves through space to some goal location at [1000, 700]. A record of its movement is given by: ...
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21 views

Model velocity as function of distance in object subject to drag and propulsion

Given an initial speed $v_0$ and acceleration $\frac{dv}{dt}|_0=a_0$, I need to find velocity as a function of distance knowing that Drag is $ D = Av² $ Propulsion is $P = Bv + C$ I already found ...
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3answers
135 views

Why can't space become fuel for spaceships? [closed]

I read somewhere that space is constitued mostly of hydrogen. So why can't space and its constituants (not only hydrogen) serve as fuel for future spaceships? The dreamer I am simply imagine a ...
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24 views

Rocket launch from equator

I am trying to simulate a rocket launch from the equator. I know that the earth's rotation around its axis will give the rocket an initial speed of $466$ m/s in the x axis. How much speed will the ...
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42 views

Velocity of rocket as a function depended of time and emitted gas?

First of all I'd like to say sorry if this question may seem be written weird in English. I got the original question in German and I have not the required vocabulary to translate it 100% correctly. ...
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93 views

Rocket equation derivation mistake by my professor

In one of my lectures our physics professor gave a derivation of the ideal rocket equation as follows: Let $v_G > 0$ be the velocity at which the gas is emitted from the rocket. Let $m$ and $v$ be ...
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44 views

Motion in space

Does a space shuttle travelling in space experience any resistance to its motion? If a body in space is applied constant force, does it attain speed of light after sufficient time?
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1answer
85 views

Fallacious derivation of the rocket equation

Consider a rocket in free space of initial mass (including fuel) of $m_0$ using up/ejecting fuel at a constant rate $r$ (mass per time). That means that at time $t$ the rocket has mass $m=m_0-rt$. The ...
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300 views

How does constant thrust avoid quadratic kinetic energy accumulation?

I haven't found the right search terms for this question, so if it has been answered, references would be welcome. Suppose we start from experimental station in deep space (interstellar space if need ...
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40 views

Solving propulsion force of water rocket

As a note, I am not a physics student, although I am familiar with many physics concepts and calculations. I am trying to calculate the force of the thrust of a water rocket. I started with the ...
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19 views

Air Powered Vs. Water Powered Rockets [duplicate]

I was looking online to find a comparison between purely air powered rockets, and water/air powered rockets, but could not find any. To clarify, a "water rocket" is filled partially with water and ...
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29 views

How much force would an explosive decompression really provide?

In science fiction, explosive decompression is occasionally used to slow down or provide a nudge for very large spacecraft (for instance, recently in the 2015 movie The Martian, and in this old Star ...
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108 views

My theory to travel near the speed of light. Why will this theory not work? [closed]

Why can't a spacecraft travel near the speed of light? Here's my theory. We assemble the spacecraft in the Earth's orbit just like the International Space Station, each time, equipping it with lots ...
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47 views

Finding the distance a spaceship would travel given a time of departure and velocity

Let's say a spaceship leaves Earth at a day t and with velocity v. Is there a way to know how many kilometers it will cover to arrive on Mars? This would be a trivial question were it not by the fact ...
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56 views

If humanity was to send a probe to Proxima Centauri, how long would the travel last?

If humanity was to send a probe to the nearest star: Proxima Centauri, at a distance of 4.24 light years from our sun, what would be the optimal propulsion technology to reach the destination as soon ...
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1answer
56 views

Optimal time for satellite rocket launch considering moon gravity [closed]

As per this The Gravitational Force of the Earth and Moon on Each Other Moon is pulling us with a force equal to 1/300,000th of our weight. I have read this Is the fuel burn for a satellite launch ...
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41 views

Aircraft Thrust to weight ratio contradiction with energy conservation

Usually, airliners have (Thrust/Weight) T/W ratio in the range of 0.2 to 0.8 and for steady flight W = lift My question is, for example, that Antonov 225 has Thrust/weight: 0.234 for max takeoff ...
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67 views

rocket vertical landing [closed]

SpaceX has published a couple of videos that show one of their heavy-lift rockets landing vertically in a highly specific location. How is it possible that they are able to control so many ...
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Can outgassing produce a significant thrust on a space ship?

There are a variety of materials that outgas in the atmosphere, and I imagine they would do so even more in the vacuum of space. I imagine an object in space would experience a small force as ...
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117 views

Violation of the Newton's first law of motion in the movement of spacecrafts in the vacuum of space [closed]

Suppose a rocket at rest in space where there is a complete vacuum and no force to influence the rocket: In the left we have the rocket with a metal ball in it. After the ball is thrown out of the ...
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189 views

At What Point Does Mass Cease to Matter?

I know very little about physics so I naturally have a lot of simple minded questions. Assuming I am piloting a rocket and want to obtain the fastest speed possible. At what point does mass more ...
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1answer
81 views

How to calculate the thrust of a rocket with relativistic exhaust

The general thrust equation is $F = \frac{dm}{dt}\cdot v$, where $m$ is propellant's mass and $v$ is the exhaust velocity, is the equation right? What if the propellant is highly relativistic? One ...
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1answer
101 views

Understanding rocket equations [closed]

I'm doing a science project where I have to explain the physics behind a trip to an exoplanet and I also have to explain about rocket equations while doing so. I know that a trip to an exoplanet is ...
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94 views

Conservation of energy during the flight of a fire cracker [closed]

We say that energy is neither created or destroyed. It can only be transformed. I hope this principle is applied in the flight of a fire cracker. The chemical energy is converted into physical energy ...
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17 views

Motion in Spaces [duplicate]

How does a shuttle move in the space as, the whole mechanism of a rocket is based on 3rd law of newton but, we can not apply 3rd law of newton in space because there is no reactive force in space?
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121 views

Explain this contradiction of violation of “ energy conservation ” using classical mechanics

Consider a rocket moves upward with some acceleration for a very small time say '$dt$' then the kinetic energy increases (for acceleration). as well as as the potential energy increases (due to height ...
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190 views

The NERVA had to use liquid H2… But why?

The NERVA engine, developed at the late 60ies, was a nuclear thermal rocket developed for vacuum use in space craft. It was supposed to use Liquid Hydrogen, a cryogenic fuel with quite a few issues ...
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Could we launch a missile from a planet with the mass of Jupiter?

If the Earth had the mass of Jupiter, would we be able to launch a space missile ? Is there a formula to calculate how the launch of 1-Kg payload increases with gravity?
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Finding position with respect to time along a trajectory across a sphere (orbital mechanics)

When trying to find an object's position with respect to time on a ballistic trajectory along a curved surface, what equation should I use? I know that when adding force to an object to achieve ...
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126 views

The Lagrangian of a Rocket

I am trying to understand how to write the Lagrangian of a system which consists of a rocket losing gas mass in a rate of $\frac{dm}{dt}$, the gas moving in a velocity of $u_0$ in the rocket's view? ...
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2answers
87 views

How much fuel do I need to send cubesat 1kg from Earth orbit to Moon orbit? [closed]

How much fuel do I need to send cubesat 1kg from Earth orbit to Moon orbit? And how much stages? For i.e. C12H22O11 + KNO3, polyethylene + oxygen or kerosene + oxygen.
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Is it possible to use stainless steel for 3d printed liquid rocket engine powered by kerosene and oxygen? [closed]

There is no possible to print from copper at this moment, so, I need a replacement material. There is rocket engine with regenerative cooling system. It's cooling by liquid propellant (it uses gaseous ...
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Earth to LEO, gravity drag and potential energy

A lot of references indicate takes about 9.4 km/s of delta-v to reach LEO. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low_Earth_orbit#Orbital_characteristics The delta-v needed to achieve low Earth orbit ...
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Where does the energy go in a rocket when no work is done?

While playing Kerbal Space Program, I wondered where my chemical energy would go when fired at 90° to the motion. It would do no work on the rocket, but all that energy has to go somewhere, right? ...
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237 views

Rocket projectile motion problem [closed]

I'm not really sure where to start with this question: In a brisk wind from the south-east of $14.1\:\mathrm{m/s}$ a rocket pointed due north is launched from a cliff that is $500\:\mathrm{m}$ above ...
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1answer
109 views

Constant Jerk Relativistic Rocket [duplicate]

A quick google search will give many helpful pages and calculators regarding constant acceleration relativistic rockets, but my question is somewhat different. What if jerk is the parameter to be ...
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1answer
50 views

Reading about liquid propellant rocket design

I was reading NASA's manual on liquid propellant rocket design from 1971. It makes the following statement. The rocket or, in a more general sense, the reaction motor presently is the only ...
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2answers
198 views

How to calculate thrust from opening a pressure vessel in space?

One popular trope in science fiction is the astronaut who (deliberately or inadvertently) punctures an air tank or something and goes rocketing off. How would we calculate the amount of force that ...
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881 views

Does an ion thrust engine consume more energy as it speeds up?

This question goes to a very basic non-understanding of mine that I have had in the back of my mind for ages - I just read the following here: ion thrusters are capable of propelling a spacecraft ...
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Molecular analysis of Rocket propulsion

Newton's third law states,For every action exerted by an object A on object B,there will be an equal and opposite reaction on A. In case of rockets,during ejection of hot gases with high ...
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457 views

Why are rockets launched vertically?

Why the rockets mostly used for space missions are launched vertically upwards and not horizontally like an airplane carrier, gradually increasing its altitude, wouldn't that be more efficient?
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2k views

Using nuclear devices to terraform Mars: Elon Musk's nuclear proposal? [closed]

Elon Musk has recently suggested Using nuclear devices to terraform Mars. In the past, comet related ideas were mooted, but Musk seems, to me anyway, to be a man in a hurry and perhaps his idea has ...
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Why do we launch rockets during the day?

The clips that I have seen of rockets launching all seem to be carried out during daytime. However, we learnt at school that rockets are fired closer to the equator and towards the east to take ...