Monday, February 25, 2008

upcoming sidebars:Oberth & Tsiolkovsky

Hermann Julius Oberth German Scientist. Born 25 June 1894 in Sibiu, Romania.. Died 1989.

Hermann J. Oberth was one of the three recognized fathers of spaceflight. A Transylvanian by birth but a German in his family heritage, he was educated at the Universities of Klausenburg, Munich, Göttingen, and Heidelberg. His doctoral dissertation was rejected because it did not fit into any established scientific discipline. He published it privately as Die Rakete zu den Planetenraeumen (The Rocket into Interplanetary Space) in 1923. It and its expanded version entitled Ways to Spaceflight (1929) set forth the basic principles of space flight and directly inspired many subsequent spaceflight pioneers, including Wernher von Braun.
Oberth Chronology
3 May 1922 - Oberth writes to Goddard. Hermann Oberth writes to Goddard for a copy of his 1920 monograph, 'A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes'. Goddard, concerned with German interest in space flight, sends him a courtesy copy with some apprehension. The following year Oberth reciprocates by sending Goddard a copy of 'Die Rakete zur Weltraumfahrt', including an acknowledgement of Goddard's work in an Addendum ('...Goddard's work was received just as this was going to theoretical approach is supplemented by his practical work....'). Goddard is convinced that Oberth has borrowed his ideas and refers to him as '..that German Oberth...'.
1923 - During the year - Oberth proposes circumlunar flight. In a discussion of the uses of an interplanetary rocket, Hermann Oberth proposed circumlunar flight to explore the hidden face of the moon and discussed the possibility of storing cryogenic fuels in space. A spacecraft could rendezvous and dock in earth orbit with a fuel capsule. When the spacecraft reached the vicinity of a planet, it would detach itself from the capsule and descend to the surface. On departure, the spacecraft would ascend and reconnect to its fuel supply for the return trip.
1923 - Hermann Oberth published Die Rakete zu den Planetenraumen (The Rocket into Planetary Space).. Hermann Oberth published Die Rakete zu den Planetenraumen (The Rocket into Planetary Space), which contained the first serious proposal for a manned space station to appear in scientific literature rather than fiction. Oberth's study presented to the scientific community a broad treatise on the practicability and scientific value not only of manned permanent stations in orbit above the Earth, but also space flight in general. Oberth suggested a permanent station supplied by smaller rockets on a periodic basis and suggested rotation of the vehicle to produce an artificial gravity for the crew. Such a station, he said, could serve as a base for Earth observations, as a weather forecasting satellite, as a communications satellite, and as a refueling station for extraterrestrial vehicles launched from orbit.
15 December 1923 - Die Rakete zu den Planetenräume published.. Die Rakete zu den Planetenräume (The Rocket Into Interpanetary Space) by Hermann Oberth was published in Germany, and was the genesis for considerable discussion of rocket propulsion. The book would have a huge and life-changing impact on ten year old Wernher Von Braun.
1926 - Valier-Oberth Moon Gun. In the 1920's members of the VfR (Society for Space Travel) amused themselves by redesigning Verne's moon gun. In 1926 rocket pioneers Max Valier and Hermann Oberth designed a gun that would rectify Verne's technical mistakes and be actually capable of firing a projectile to the moon.
5 June 1927 - VfR established.. Johannes Winkler forms the first society for space travel in Breslau. The Society for Space Travel (Verein fuer Raumschiffahrt), is better known by its abbreviation 'VfR'. From the three people that attended the first meeting, it would grow to 500 members within the year, including most of the European space pioneers - Oberth, Hohmann, von Hoefft, von Pirquet, Rynin, and Esnault-Petrie.
1928 - Von Pirquet Moon Gun. Further improvements to the Valier-Oberth gun were suggested by Willy Ley and Baron Guido von Pirquet of Vienna. To achieve the necessary muzzle velocity, it would be necessary to construct the gun with angled lateral chambers. These design concepts would be put to military use in the V-3 Hochdruckpumpe cannon of World War II.
23 May 1928 - Opel Rak II. Fritz von Opel personally drives rocket-car Opel Rak II, equipped with 24 Brander powder rockets, to 200 kph at Berlin. The same day Oberth is debating the German scientific establishment, trying to overturn their belief that space flight using liquid rockets is theoretically impossible. The VfR regard Valier's experiments with Opel as publicity stunts, threatening the credibility of their society.
1929 - Hermann Oberth published Wege zur Raumschiffahrt (Path to Space Travel). Hermann Oberth published Wege zur Raumschiffahrt, in which he greatly elaborated on ideas presented in his 1923 book. Oberth here presented several specific designs for orbital space stations, ranging from spherical living quarters for the crew to large reflective mirrors fabricated in orbit. Among several innovations were methods for fabrication in orbit, propulsion by particle emission, and small ferry vehicles to permit travel in the vicinity of the station. Such stations could be used for a variety of purposes, ranging from scientific observation sites to military installations.
1929 July - September - Noordung orbiting space observatory. Hermann Noordung (pseudonym for Capt. Potocnik of the Austrian Imperial Army) expanded the ideas of Hermann Oberth on space flight in a detailed description of an orbiting space observatory. The problems of weightlessness, space communications, maintaining a livable environment for the crew, and extravehicular activity were considered. Among the uses of such an observatory were chemical and physical experiments in a vacuum, telescopes of great size and efficiency, detailed mapping of the earth's surface, weather observation, surveillance of shipping routes, and military reconnaissance.
15 October 1929 - Frau im Mond (The Girl in the Moon) premieres in Berlin.. The film, directed by Fritz Lang, with Hermann Oberth as technical consultant, provided a realistic portrayal of the rollout and launch of a liquid-propellant booster sending a manned expedition to the moon. Lang provided Oberth with funds to build and launch a liquid-propellant rocket to publicise the film. Oberth's rocket, using a conical combustion chamber to mix liquid oxygen and gasoline, was 1.8 m tall and was to have been launched to an altitude of 64 km over the Baltic Sea from Greifswalder Oie. One of the assistants hired by Oberth to fabricate the rocket was Rudolph Nebel, a World War I fighter pilot with (unfortunately) little actual engineering experience. Oberth also had no practical engineering or organizational ability, and was unable to produce the liquid rocket in the four months allotted. He then turned to an 11-m tall hybrid rocket that was to burn a to-be-determined carbon compound with liquid oxygen. This also proved impossible, and Oberth simply gave up and left town - returning, however, for the film's premiere. Ufa studios took ownership of the unfinished rockets.
December 1929 - VfR regroups. Winkler had resigned as president. Oberth is back in Berlin, and a meeting is held, with Nebel, Wurm, Oberth, Klaus Riedel, Winkler, and Willy Ley in attendance. It was decided to try and get the Oberth rocket materials back from Ufa and press on to demonstrate flight of a liquid propellant rocket. For this purpose the Oberth rocket was much too ambitious and probably wouldn't work anyway. Nebel proposes building a new 'Minimum Rakete' or 'Mirak' to demonstrate that it could be done. Work begins to obtain funds to ground test and perfect Oberth's 'Kegelduese' conical rocket motor.
11 April 1930 - VfR evening in Berlin. The VfR presents itself to the scientific community in Berlin. Winkler gives a lecture at the auditorium of the Central Post Office, and the Oberth rocket, Kegelduese, and other articles are displayed.
23 July 1930 - VfR demonstrates rocket motor to German government officials. The VfR fires its 'Kegelduese' liquid oxygen and gasoline-fueled rocket motor in a demonstration for the Director of the Chemisch-Technische Reichsanstalt in an attempt to secure financial support. Nebel had arranged the demonstration and runs the Kegelduese for 90 seconds. It generates 7 kgf and consumes 6 kg of liquid oxygen and 1 kg of gasoline in that time (specific impulse 90 seconds). Participating are Oberth, Nebel, Riedel, Ley, and Von Braun. Nebel's Mirak is not yet ready to test.
Bibliography and Further Reading
Launius, Roger D, NASA Chief Historian, NASA History Office Home Page, . Accessed at:
Hermann Julius Oberth (June 25, 1894December 28, 1989) was an Austro-Hungarian-born, German and Romanian physicist, and, along with the Russian Konstantin Tsiolkovsky and the American Robert Goddard, one of the founding fathers of rocketry and astronautics. The three were never active collaborators: instead, their parallel achievements occurred independently of one another.
1 Early life
2 Rocketry and space flight
3 Later life
4 Legacy
5 Books
6 References
7 External links
[edit] Early life
Oberth was born to a Saxon family in the Transylvanian city of Schäßburg (Romanian Sighişoara, Romania). By his own account and that of many others, around the age of 11 Oberth became fascinated with the field in which he was to make his mark through the writings of Jules Verne, especially From the Earth to the Moon and Around the Moon, re-reading them to the point of memorization. Influenced by Verne's books and ideas, Oberth constructed his first model rocket as a school student of 14. In his youthful experiments, he arrived independently at the concept of the multistage rocket, but lacked, at the time, the resources to pursue his idea on any but a theoretical level.
In 1912, Oberth undertook the study of medicine in Munich but at the outbreak of World War I he was drafted in an Imperial German infantry battalion and sent to the Eastern Front; in 1915 he was moved to a medical unit in a hospital in Sighişoara.[1] Here he initially conducted a series of experiments concerning weightlessness and later resumed his rocket designs. By 1917, he showed what his studies were about and what would become a shooting missile with liquid propellant to Hermann von Stein, the Prussian Minister of War.[2]
On July 6, 1918 he married Mathilde Hummel, with whom he had four children, among them a son who died at the front during World War II, and a daughter who also died during the war, when a liquid oxygen plant exploded in a workplace accident in August 1944. In 1919 he moved once again to Germany, this time to study physics, initially in Munich and later in Göttingen.[1]
In 1922, his doctoral dissertation on rocket science was rejected as "utopian". He had the 92-page work privately published as the controversial Die Rakete zu den Planetenräumen ("By Rocket into Planetary Space"); in 1929, Oberth would expand this to a 429-page work entitled Wege zur Raumschiffahrt ("Ways to Spaceflight"). Oberth commented later that he made the deliberate choice not to write another doctoral dissertation: "I refrained from writing another one, thinking to myself: Never mind, I will prove that I am able to become a greater scientist than some of you, even without the title of doctor."[3] He criticized the German system of education, saying "Our educational system is like an automobile which has strong rear lights, brightly illuminating the past. But looking forward things are barely discernible."[3] Hermann Oberth was finally awarded with the title of doctor in physics with the same paper, by professor Augustin Maior, at Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca (Romania), on May 23, 1923.[1]
He became a member of the Verein für Raumschiffahrt (VfR - "Spaceflight Society"), an amateur rocket group that had taken great inspiration from his book and acted as something of a mentor to the enthusiasts that made it up. For several years before his final departure from Romania in 1938, Oberth taught physics and mathematics at the Stephan Ludwig Roth High School in Mediaş.[1]
[edit] Rocketry and space flight

The statue of Hermann Oberth in front of Sibiu city hall
In 1928 and 1929 Oberth worked in Berlin as a scientific consultant on the first film ever to have scenes set in space, Frau im Mond ("The Woman in the Moon"), directed at Universum Film AG by Fritz Lang. The film was of enormous value in popularizing the idea of rocket science. Oberth's main task was to build and launch a rocket as a publicity event prior to the film's premiere. On June 5, 1929, Oberth won the first REP-Hirsch Prize of the French Astronomical Society for his Encouragement of Astronautics in his book Wege zur Raumschiffahrt (Ways to Spaceflight) that expanded Die Rakete zu den Planetenräumen to a full-length book.[4]
In autumn 1929, Oberth launched his first liquid fuel rocket, named Kegeldüse. He was helped in this experiment by his students at the Technical University of Berlin, one of whom was Wernher von Braun, who would later head the wartime project to develop the rocket officially called the A4, but far better known today as the V-2 rocket.
In 1938 the Oberth family left Sibiu for good, to settle first in Nazi Germany. Oberth himself moved on first to the Technische Hochschule in Vienna, then the Technische Hochschule in Dresden. Oberth arrived at Peenemünde in 1941 to work on the V-2 and circa September 1943, was awarded the Kriegsverdienstkreuz I Klasse mit Schwertern (War Merit Cross 1st Class, with Swords) for his "outstanding, courageous behavior … during the attack" of Peenemünde by Operation Hydra.[5] Oberth later worked on solid-propellant anti-aircraft rockets at the WASAG complex near Wittenberg. At the end of the war the Oberth family moved to Feucht, near Nuremberg. Oberth left for Switzerland in 1948, where he worked as an independent consultant and a writer.
In 1950 he went on to Italy where, he completed the work he had begun at WASAG for the Italian Navy. In 1953 he returned to Feucht to publish his book Menschen im Weltraum (Man in Space), in which he described his ideas for a space-based reflecting telescope, a space station, an electric spaceship, and space suits.
In the 1950s, Oberth offered his opinions regarding unidentified flying objects; he was a supporter of the extraterrestrial hypothesis.[6]
Oberth eventually came to work for his ex-student von Braun, developing space rockets in Huntsville, Alabama in the United States (see also List of German rocket scientists in the United States). Among other things, Oberth was involved in writing a study, The Development of Space Technology in the Next Ten Years. In 1958 Hermann was back in Feucht, a where he published his ideas on a lunar exploration vehicle, a "lunar catapult", and on "muffled" helicopters and airplanes. In 1960, in the United States again, he went to work for Convair as a technical consultant on the Atlas rocket.
[edit] Later life
Hermann Oberth retired in 1962 at the age of 68. From 1965 to 1967 he was a member of the far right National Democratic Party. In July 1969, he returned to the US to witness the launch of the Saturn V rocket that carried the Apollo 11 crew on the first landing mission to the Moon.[7]
The 1973 energy crisis inspired Oberth to look at alternative energy sources, including a plan for a wind power station that could utilize the jet stream. However, his main interest in retirement was to turn to more abstract philosophical questions. Most notable among his several books from this period is Primer For Those Who Would Govern.
Oberth died in Nuremberg, on December 28, 1989.[2] [8]
[edit] Legacy
Oberth is memorialized by the Hermann Oberth Space Travel Museum in Feucht, and by the Hermann Oberth Society, which brings together scientists, researchers and astronauts from East and West in order to carry on his work in rocketry and space exploration.
Also, a crater on the Moon was named after him (see Oberth (crater)).

The Oberth effect is named after him.
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock featured an Oberth-class starship in his honor: this class was subsequently used in various episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Fullmetal Alchemist the Movie: Conqueror of Shamballa features Hermann Oberth as the "teacher" of the films protagonist, Edward Elric. Oberth is also mentioned in the last episode of Fullmetal Alchemist.In that episode Edward has heard of a great scientist, named Oberth, with curious theories. The last moments of the series are Edward on a train to meet Oberth; determined to study rocketry with him.
In Hideo Kojima's space adventure game, Policenauts, there is an extravehicular mobility suit called the Oberth.
[edit] Books
The Moon Car (1959)
The Electric Spaceship (1960)
Ways to Spaceflight (1929)
Primer for Those Who Would Govern (1987) ISBN 0-914301-06-3
[edit] References
^ a b c d (Romanian) Jürgen Heinz Ianzer, Hermann Oberth, pǎrintele zborului cosmic ("Hermann Oberth, Father of the Cosmic Flight"), p. 3, 11, 13, 15.
^ a b Mort de Hermann Oberth, pionnier de la conquête spatiale ("The Death of Hermann Oberth, Space Conquest Pioneer"), in Le Monde, January 1, 1990, p. 3, 16, accessed on October 7, 2006.
^ a b "Hermann Oberth, Father of Space Travel", at
^ L'Aerophile, June 1-15, 1929, p.176; L. Blosset, Smithsonian Annals of Flight, No. 10, p. 11
^ Ordway, Frederick I., III.. The Rocket Team, Apogee Books Space Series 36, 36.
^ [ Schuessler, John L., "Statements About Flying Saucers And Extraterrestrial Life Made By Prof. Hermann Oberth, German Rocket Scientist" 2002
^ "Hermann Oberth", at the U.S. Centennial of Flight Commission
^ "Hermann Oberth, 95, German Rocket Expert", New York Times, December 31, 1989. Retrieved on 2007-06-21. "Hermann Julius Oberth, a pioneer of the space age who worked with Werner von Braun to help develop Germany's V-2 rocket, died on Friday. He was 95 years old. Mr. Oberth died at a hospital in Nuremberg after a short illness, the Hermann Oberth Museum in Feucht said in a statement."
[edit] External links
The Hermann Oberth Space Museum
Statements About Flying Saucers and Extraterrestrial Life Made by Hermann Oberth
Retrieved from ""

Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky (Russian: Константи́н Эдуа́рдович Циолко́вский; Polish: Konstanty Ciołkowski) (September 17 [O.S. September 5] 1857September 19, 1935) was an Imperial Russian and Soviet rocket scientist and pioneer of astronautic theory who spent most of his life in a log house on the outskirts of Kaluga, about 200 km (125 miles) southwest of Moscow.
1 Biography
2 Work
4 Tributes
5 See also
6 Works
7 Notes
8 External links
[edit] Biography
He was born in Izhevskoye (now in Spassky District, Ryazan Oblast), in the Russian Empire, to a middle-class family. His father, Edward Tsiolkovsky (in Polish: Ciołkowski), was Polish; his mother, Maria Yumasheva, was an educated Russian woman. At the age of 10, Konstantin caught a serious illness and became hard of hearing[1]. He was not accepted at elementary schools because of his hearing problem, so he was self-taught[1].
Tsiolkovsky theorized many aspects of space travel and rocket propulsion. He is considered the father of human spaceflight and the first man to conceive the space elevator, becoming inspired in 1895 by the newly-constructed Eiffel Tower in Paris.
He was also an adherent of philosopher Nikolai Fyodorov, and believed that colonizing space would lead to the perfection of the human race, with immortality and a carefree existence.
Nearly deaf, he worked as a high school mathematics teacher until retiring in 1920. Only from the mid 1920s onwards the importance of his work was acknowledged by others, and Tsiolkovsky was honoured for it. He died on 19 September 1935 in Kaluga and was buried in state.
[edit] Work
In the late 19th and early 20th century, Tsiolkovsky delved into theories of heavier-than-air flying machines, independently working through many of the same calculations that the Wright brothers were doing at the same time. However, he never built any practical models, and his interest shifted to more ambitious topics. Tsiolkovsky's ideas were little known outside Imperial Russia, and the field lagged until German and other scientists independently made the same calculations decades later.
In 1923, German Hermann Oberth published his thesis "By Rocket into Planetary Space", which triggered wide-scaled interest and scientific research on the topic of space flight. It also reminded Friedrich Zander about once having read an article on the subject. He contacted the author and became active in promoting Tsiolkovsky's work, and developing it further. In 1924 Zander established the first astronautics society in the Soviet Union, the Society for Studies of Interplanetary Travel, and later researched and built liquid-fuelled rockets named OR-1 (1930) and OR-2 (1933).

1 rouble, 1987
Only late in his lifetime Tsiolkovsky was honoured for his pioneering work. On 23 August 1924 he was elected as a first professor of the Military Aerial Academy named after N. E. Zhukovsky (Russian: Военно-воздушная академия им. Н. Е. Жуковского).
His most important work, published in 1903, was "Исследование мировых пространств реактивными приборами" (The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reaction Devices),[2] arguably the first academic treatise on rocketry. Tsiolkovsky calculated that the horizontal speed required for a minimal orbit around the Earth is 8 km (5 miles)/second and that this could be achieved by means of a multistage rocket fueled by liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen.
During his lifetime he published over 500 works on space travel and related subjects, including science fiction novels. Among his works are designs for rockets with steering thrusters, multi-stage boosters, space stations, airlocks for exiting a spaceship into the vacuum of space, and closed cycle biological systems to provide food and oxygen for space colonies.
Tsiolkovsky developed the idea of air cushion since 1921, publishing fundamental paper on it in 1927, entitled Сопротивление воздуха и скорый поезд ("Air Resistance and the Express Train").[3][4] In 1929 Tsiolkovsky proposed the construction of multistage rockets in his book Космические ракетные поезда (Space Rocket Trains).
His and Oberth's work influenced later rocketeers throughout Europe, like Wernher von Braun, and was also studied by the Americans in the 1950s and 1960s as they sought to understand the Soviet Union's successes in space flight.
[edit] Quotes
"The Earth is the cradle of humanity, but mankind cannot stay in the cradle forever."[5]
"Men are weak now, and yet they transform the Earth’s surface. In millions of years their might will increase to the extent that they will change the surface of the Earth, its oceans, the atmosphere and themselves. They will control the climate and the solar system just as they control the Earth. They will travel beyond the limits of our planetary system; they will reach other Suns and use their fresh energy instead of the energy of their dying luminary."
"Man must at all costs overcome the Earth's gravity and have, in reserve, the space at least of the Solar System."[5]
[edit] Tributes

Draft first space ship by Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
The basic equation for rocket propulsion, the Tsiolkovsky rocket equation, is named after him.
The State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics in Kaluga now bears his name.
Tsiolkovskiy crater on the far side of the moon was named after him, while asteroid 1590 Tsiolkovskaja was named after his wife.[6][7]
A fictional ship, the К. Э. Циолковский (K. E. Tsiolkovsky), was named after him for the television series Star Trek: The Next Generation. The episode it appeared in was entitled "The Naked Now". A copy of the dedication plaque of that vessel, with a rough rendering of Tsiolkovsky's Cyrillic name, was seen in the ship's set dressing. (the artist mistakenly used "З" instead of "Э" for the middle initial, and "п" instead of "л" in the last name). See also its entry at Memory Alpha.
A space station is named Tsiolkovsky 1 in William Gibson's short story Hinterlands.
[edit] See also
Russian philosophy
Space exploration
Space colonization
[edit] Works
1903 - «Исследование мировых пространств реактивными приборами». It is available online here
"Origin and an essence of music" ("Происхождение музыки и ее сущность") PDF File. Russian
[edit] Notes
^ a b Notable Scientists from 1900 to the Present, Volume 5, The Gale Group, 2001, ISBN 0-7876-5454-X, pp. 2256-2258
^ Tsiolkovsky's Исследование мировых пространств реактивными приборами - The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reaction Devices (Russian paper)
^ Charles Coulston Gillispie, Dictionary of Scientific Biography, Published 1980 by Charles Scribner's Sons, ISBN 0684129256, p.484
^ (Russian) Air cushion vehicle history
^ a b Konstantin Tsiolkovsky Quotes
^ Tsiolkovsky
^ Untitled Document
[edit] External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
The life of Konstantin Eduardovitch Tsiolkovsky An article with references, facsimile articles and more
Tsiolkovsky's Imperative in the 21st Century Academic paper
Virtual Matchbox Labels Museum - Russian labels - Space - Page 2 - Konstantin Tsiolkovsky Historic images
Tsiolkovsky from
Spaceflight or Extinction: Konstantin Tsiolkovsky Excerpts from "The Aims of Astronautics", The Call of the Cosmos
The Foundations of the Space Age
Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky ( 1857 - 1935 ) is typically portrayed as a lone genius who worked largely in isolation from centres of higher learning and industry. An attack of scarlet fever at age ten ruined his hearing and cut off Tsiolkovsky from a normal education and social development.
However, by reading all the books in the library of his father, a forester, Tsiolkovsky managed to partially self-educate himself. In 1873, when he was 16, he went to Moscow to continue this process. In Moscow he started to dream about the possibility of space travel and interplanetary flight.
After coming back to his father's home in 1876, he worked for three years as an apprentice teacher of mathematics, physics, and chemistry. In 1879 he passed his examinations to qualify as a schoolteacher. He lived in Borovsk, Kaluga Province (1880 - 1892 ) and then in Kaluga ( 1892 - 1935 ). He continued working as as a teacher until 1921.
While living in Ryazan with his father's family, he published his first known scientific work "Astronomical Drawings" in 1879. It schematically depicted the Solar System and the distances between planets. This, his first work, already reflected his interest in the problems of space studies.
Later, in Borovsk, Tsiolkovsky wrote "Free Space" (1883). Here he considered the possibility of living in outer space and the effects of zero gravity. For the first time Tsiolkovsky included a drawing of a spacecraft that could orient itself in space with the help of reactive jets (but not change its position by propulsive rockets). It was very important for Tsiolkovsky to prove the possibility of controlled motion of an artificial vehicle in free space.
In 1903 he published an article "The Investigation of Space by Means of Reactive Devices". Here he first outlined his theory of spaceflight and published the basic equation for reaching space by rocket that is still known to students as the "Tsiolkovsky Equation". It was the first theoretical proof of the possibility of spaceflight. Over the next three decades he further developed his ideas on rocketry and space travel, publishing, along with numerous papers and monographs, a science fiction novel, for popularisation of his ideas.
In his articles he describes how space rockets would be built, and the main future principles of rocketry and space exploration. Let us mention some of them :
1. Space rockets have to use liquid engines using two components: fuel and oxidiser. The best combination would be hydrogen and oxygen, but the most useful combination would be kerosene and oxygen. It would eventually be possible to design a nuclear engine.
2. Different ways of guiding space rockets would be developed. Easiest would be to use a graphite rudder in the rocket's propulsive jet. Another possibility would be to correct the direction of the space rocket by moving all of the engine or it nozzle.
3. Gyroscope systems could control the orientation of the rocket in space.
4. It would be possible to regulate the temperature inside of space rockets with the help of special outer coverings with differing the solar reflectivity.
5. For making spacewalks, extra vehicular activity would require the design of special pressure suits and air locks. Outside the space rocket, cosmonauts would work tethered to the rockets with the cords.
6. Tsiolkovsky described the effects of living under zero gravity in space rockets, and considered possible ways of protecting cosmonauts from the high gravity forces of powered flight and return to earth.
7. Among the most interesting ideas of Tsiolkovsky was the construction of long duration near-Earth (and than interplanetary) space stations. Later it would be possible to design and build "Space Islands" - huge habitats for thousands of people.
8. In 1926 Tsiolkovsky wrote his well known "Plan Of Space Exploration" (this saw manned colonization of the universe in 16 stages).
9. Tsiolkovsky suggested design of special launch ramps for space rockets - using a special ramp booster as the first stage of space rocket.
10. In 1929 Tsiolkovsky wrote and published his work "Rocket Space Trains". He suggested a method of reaching of escape velocity using a multistage booster, consisting of separate rockets joined together and launched simultaneously. These very last calculations about multistage boosters pushed Tsiolkovsky to the conclusion that the first space flights would take place within 20 to 30 years. He made this prediction during his last radiio speech from Moscow on May 1, 1932.
These were the tremendous visions of the great thinker and scientist Tsiolkovsky, who called himself "The Citizen of the Universe".

Konstantin E. Tsiolkovsky's 16 Stages of Space Exploration.
( 1926 )
1. Design of rocket-propelled airplanes with wings.
2. Progressively increasing the speeds and altitudes reached with these airplanes.
3. Designing of a pure rocket without wings.
4. Developing the ability to land on the ocean surface by rocket.
5. Reaching of escape velocity and first flight into space.
6. Lengthening of the rocket flight time into space.
7. Experimental use of plants to make an artificial atmosphere in spacecraft.
8. Using of pressurised space suits for activity outside spacecraft.
9. Making of orbital greenhouses for plants.
10. Building of the large orbital habitats around the earth.
11. Using solar radiation to grow food, to heat space quarters, and for transport needs throughout the solar system.
12. Colonization of the asteroid belt.
13. Colonisation of the entire solar system and beyond.
14. Achievement of individual and social perfection.
15. Overcrowding of the solar system and galaxy colonisation.
16. The sun begins to die and the people remaining in the solar system's population move to other solar systems.

1. Bainbridge, William S.,1983. The Spaceflight Revolution. Krieger, Malabar, Florida.
2. Kosmodemyansky, Arkady A., 1987. Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky (in Russian). Nauka,Moscow.
3. Rynin, Nikolay A., 1931. K.E.Tsiolkovsky : Life, Writings and Rockets. Vol.3, No.7 of Interplanetary Flight and Communication. Leningrad. Translated in Jerusalem, 1971.
4. Rynin, Nikolay A., 1932. Theory of Space Flight. Vol.3, No.8. (the same ed.)
5. Samoilovitch, Sergei I., 1969. Citizen of the Universe (in Russian), Tsiolkovsky State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics, Kaluga.
6. Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin E., 1995. Exploration of the Universe with Reaction Machines : Exploring the Unknoun. The NASA History Series. NASA SP 4407, Washington, D.C.


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