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Name: John M.
Status: other
Grade: other
Location: NV
Country: N/A
Date: N/A

Who was the scientist who first said that propulsion would work even in outer space?. I seem to remember the scientific community laughed at him initially, at least. In a way is similar to Alfred Wegener's case on plate tectonics.

Hi John

I believe you are thinking of Robert Goddard. He explained rocket motion within the context of conservation of momentum, rather than requiring a rocket to "push off" of something. Hope this helps.

Bob Froehlich

Dear John,

A very good question. My guess would be Robert Goddard, although he really built upon the ancient Chinese who might have been launching rockets 1000 years ago. Then we must not forget Arthur C. Clark, whose vivid imagination and first rate writing showed humanity what it could accomplish in space. Then Werner von Braun actually built the great boosters that launched us to the Moon.


David H. Levy

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