Chapter 2. Model Rocketry Today

The Five Faces of Hobby Rockets

On October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik, the world’s first man-made satellite. It followed that with Vostok I, the first rocket-based human space flight, which put cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin into orbit on April 12, 1961. In the same time frame, the Unites States created NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and announced the selection of America’s first seven astronauts. Among the general public, interest in rocketry exploded. Unfortunately, it sometimes exploded literally, claiming the fingers, eyes, and occasionally lives of hapless would-be home scientists as they tried to build rocket motors in their garages and basements.

Fortunately, Orville Carlisle ...

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