80s ExpertBy Gareth Bellamy
Flat Earth Rocket Man Takes First Steps Towards Space
March 29, 2018 6:00 AM
"Mad" Mike Hughes, a man who combines the talents of amateur rocket construction with attempting to prove the earth is flat, finally managed to launch himself into a very low earth orbit on Sunday.
Reaching a height of approximately 570 metres, or 1875 feet in old money, the homemade steam powered rocket then deployed a couple of parachutes to ensure Mad Mike got back to (flat) earth safely. However, the flight didn't really get high enough to prove one way or another if the earth is flat, though Mr Hughes claims that wasn't the idea behind the mission.
Mr Hughes apparently believs the earth is shaped liked a Frisbee, and to prove that fact, he's going to have to go a lot higher than 600 metres. Though when asked if he thinks the earth is flat, he said:
"Do I know for sure? No. That's why I want to go up in space."
His next mission will involve him building a 'Rockoon'. This is a half rocket/half balloon mission, where the balloon carries the roicket into the earth's upper atmosphere. A rocket would then fire and carry Mr Hughes all the way up to 100km. Presumably from that height he can then determine if the earth is indeed Frisbee shaped.
Being an amateur sportsman, for example, isn't that risky a deal. The worst you can expect is a bruised ego, even a broken bone. We can't help thinking the consequences of an amateur rocket launch going pear-shaped (or Frisbee shaped!) could be dire. Despite professional astronauts and NASA advising him to not take the risks, perhaps advice from those brainiacs who also claim the earth is flat is not the kind of advice 'Mad' Mike will respond to.
Anyway, it makes for interesting viewing. We wish Mike all the best with trying to prove the earth is flat. He's clearly mad a bag of spanners but we don't want him to get hurt or blown up on his futile attempts!
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