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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Numerical problem [on hold]

A spacecraft weighing 500 kg is drifted of its course at a point 60,000 km from the impact point by 100km perpendicular to the actual trajectory. Explain the course correction manoeuvre, giving the ...
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Physics problem: stage of rocket [on hold]

A manned rocket is rising with a velocity of 3 km/s. At exactly 2000m, it disconnects the first rocket stage. How long does it take the stage to hit the ground, and what is the velocity of impact.(...
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How does NASA determine the position of their probes?

I'm currently following New Horizons visit to Pluto. I'm just wondering how does the Probe/NASA determine the Position of the Probe? I would assume using earth's GPS wouldn't have the necessary ...
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What would be the craziest (but still plausible) plan for launching a small payload to the moon? [closed]

I wonder what would be the cheapest possible (that means cheaper than anything else that's out there already) to "just" launch a small payload (like a ball less than a kilogram) and crash it somewhere ...
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57 views

Why was the Sputnik rocket's mass over 130 times that of the rocket equation?

From the Sputnik rocket's Wikipedia page, the specific impulse of the boosters and the engine are both ~307 s. Low Earth Orbit requires a Delta V of ~9400 m/s. The mass of Sputnik is ~85 kg. Plugging ...
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56 views

Could vacuum chambers lighten the load for space bound technology?

Would cavities of near vacuums in the head (or in the 6 x 6 blocks surrounding the rocket [for reentry temperatures]) of a rocket make it lighter so it can be sent out easier?
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Trouble following an argument about a rocket problem

This is from pages 32-33 of Physics for Mathematicians. A rocket + fuel system of mass $m(t)$ is moving along at velocity $v(t)$, with its fuel being ejected at the velocity (relative to the rocket) $...
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34 views

How is rocket acceleration with flight angle calculated?

I know $a=F/M$ and that if you launch straight up you have to subtract the rocket's weight from the thrust, but what about at an angle? At any angle there's a rearward component that is sine theta of ...
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4answers
363 views

Inertia and Rocket Propulsion

We were taught in school that the law of inertia indicates that an object tend to stay the way it is, so if you throw something in space it will tend to go on forever and ever. The reason an object ...
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3answers
64 views

Space Rocket Ionizing Its Path To Decrease Fuel Consumption [closed]

A beam(maybe multiple beams from ground crossing at, or just some very high alternating potential, something like focused haarp) on tip of rocket targeting at path of it, ionizing just the closest ...
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92 views

Relativistic Rocket Fuel Requirements

I am trying to reconcile two different calculations of fuel for a 1g constant acceleration/deceleration trip to Alpha Centauri. One found here (http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/physics/Relativity/SR/...
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Why do rocket engines have a throat?

Diagrams of rocket engines like this one, (source) always seem to show a combustion chamber with a throat, followed by a nozzle. Why is there a throat? Wouldn't the thrust be the same if the ...
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Supergun Launching of Satellites

I should say first that I don't believe this is a feasible launch method, otherwise NASA and other space agencies would be using it by now. It's based on this BBC news story Saddam Hussein's Supergun ...
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Rocket launch from a mountain

If we were to build a high speed rail up the side of a mountain like in some Science Fiction movies, what is the velocity needed at the point of leaving the mountain excluding angular momentum from ...
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3answers
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Speed of an object in air versus in vacuum

Okay, imagine that you are shooting a rocket down a tunnel that is 60 miles long and the rocket is travelling at 60mph, so the rocket should reach the end of the tunnel in a hour, right? Yep, in an ...
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2answers
64 views

Magnetism In Space

I am not an expert when it comes to physics. I was looking at maglev technology the other day and a thought crossed my mind. Would similar systems work for deep space exploration. I understand ...
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29 views

How is a rocket mounted w.r.t. gimbal?

Gimbal system is used to balance the rocket from tripping after its launch. But, how is a rocket mounted with respect to the gimbal system?
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64 views

2 times the velocity, 4 times the energy, 8 times the heat

In SpaceX's webcast today they talked about the first stage getting back to Earth with twice the velocity as usual. I quote: "So 4 times as much energy means harder on the stage, and 8 times as much ...
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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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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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2answers
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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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36 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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Application of Newton's third law

By newton's third law , we know that every action has an equal and opposite reaction .We move left when we push slightly on the right and move forward as we push backward. But how do rockets, ...
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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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302 views

What is the optimal burn direction to lower periapsis of hyperbolic orbit?

I am an engineering student who is interested in orbital mechanics. I am doing some self study before taking some orbital mechanics courses next year. I was learning about various orbit types (...
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49 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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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 = AvĀ² $ Propulsion is $P = Bv + C$ I already found $...
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Maximum speed of a rocket with a potential of relativistic speeds

Ultimately, the factor limiting the maximum speed of a rocket is: the amount of fuel it carries the speed of ejection of the gases the mass of the rocket the length of the rocket ...
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3answers
144 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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31 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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96 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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Why are rockets so big?

I'm curious why rockets are so big in their size. Since both the gravitational potential one need to overcome in order to put thing into orbit, and the chemical energy burned from the fuel, are ...
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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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48 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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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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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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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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31 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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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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51 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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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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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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Can the technology behind Particle accelerators can be used for space propulsion?

As I understand, the kinetic energy of the proton beam in a hadron collider is quite large. Can you build a space propulsion system that is based on accelerating a proton bean to relativistic speeds ...
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Why don't rockets tip over when they launch?

Rockets separate from the launch pad and supporting structures very early in flight. It seems like they should tip over once that happens. Why don't they tip over ? Is it due to a well designed ...
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1answer
45 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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119 views

What will I see if I travelled to a distant planet in 100 times faster than speed of light and look back? [closed]

Consider this scenario. I enter a space ship at 10:00 AM, it starts to move at a speed 100 times faster than light, I travel for 55 mins. And then slow down to very much less than speed of light and ...
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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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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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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 ...