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A Question about Space Propulsion...

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posted on Jul, 7 2010 @ 07:26 PM
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Ok, now this may be a dumb question, but its been bugging my mind for a little while now.

If space is truly a vacuum, how does a rocket create thrust? if there is truly an absence of "atmosphere" or matter to provide force against, then how does it work?

What am I missing here?




posted on Jul, 7 2010 @ 07:49 PM
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Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Thus when the rocket is lit and the exhaust is ejected from the back, the shuttle moves forward at a rate equal to the rate at which exhaust exits the space craft. Don't quote me on this because I am not entirely sure.



posted on Jul, 7 2010 @ 07:53 PM
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Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Think of the diet coke and mentos thing.



When the chemical reaction starts, it causes the soda to expand rapidly. It cannot go anywhere but out the hole, so it does. However, it expands so quickly that it comes out with force, and with every action(the expansion and launching of the soda) comes an equal and opposite reaction(the bottle gains thrust). This is essentially what they use to get the rocket in space, and it would work with or without an atmosphere. To maneuver in space, they have little thrusters built into the side(or wherever they need it) that effectively does the same thing, allowing the rocket to push off of the chemical booster to maneuver.

Hope that helps



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