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article imageFlat-Earther to launch himself in steam rocket on Saturday

By Karen Graham     Nov 22, 2017 in Science
As the first step in his flat-Earth space program, "Mad" Mike Hughes plans to launch himself 1,800 feet (550 meters) high in his home-made scrap metal rocket and fly through the air at 500 mph (800 kph) above the Mojave desert on Saturday.
Mike Hughes, a 61-year-old limo driver who makes about $15 an hour, has spent the last few years building a steam rocket in his garage. The project has cost him $20,000 and includes Rust-Oleum paint to fancy it up and a motor home he bought on Craigslist that he converted into a ramp, according to the Associated Press.
"I don't believe in science," said Hughes, whose main sponsor for the rocket is Research Flat Earth. "It'll shut the door on this ball Earth," he said in his fundraising video. He also explained that NASA is controlled by round-Earth Freemasons and Elon Musk is making fake rockets.
An azimuthal equidistant projection of the entire spherical Earth. A rendered picture of the Flat Ea...
An azimuthal equidistant projection of the entire spherical Earth. A rendered picture of the Flat Earth model. Created By Dominic Sobieski, The white around the outside of the globe is thought to be an 'Ice Wall', preventing people from falling off the surface of the earth.
Flat-Earthers and science at odds
Proponents of a flat Earth don't believe the planet is round, like a ball. They also believe the Earth is stationary, with the Arctic Circle being located in the middle of a flat disc, with the Antarctic surrounding the edge of the disc. Gravity is a hoax and NASA has been "Photo-shopping" images of the planet just to perpetuate the hoax of the Earth being round.
Flat-Earthers further believe that because the Earth's surface looks and feels flat when we walk around it, this is proof the planet is flat. And all this is what Mr. Hughes believes. However, he claims to know what he is doing. He won't be going high enough on Saturday to prove anything about the curvature of the Earth, but he will be promoting the flat-Earth group sponsoring the attempted rocket launch.
Hughes says, "I know about aerodynamics and fluid dynamics and how things move through the air, about the certain size of rocket nozzles, and thrust. But that’s not science, that’s just a formula. There’s no difference between science and science fiction."
The new Google Earth 18-04-2017
The new Google Earth 18-04-2017
Saturday launch
The rocket launch will take place in Ambrose, California, a ghost town in the Mojave Desert along Route 66. Hughes plans to have a parachute-assisted touchdown. To get into the atmosphere, Hughes will heat up 70 gallons of water in a stainless steel tank and then blast off between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.
He plans on reaching about 1,800 feet before pulling two parachutes. He has already been in contact with the Federal Aviation Administration and the Bureau of Land Management, so we guess they have given Hughes their blessing. This will actually be the second time this daredevil has launched himself into the sky.
Mike Hughes pictured here with a previous creation.
Mike Hughes pictured here with a previous creation.
Mike Hughes
In 2014, Hughes road a different steam-powered rocket that traveled 1,400 feet into the sky. Hughes suffered problems due to the forces from the thrust of taking off that resulted in him having a lengthy recovery. He is hoping things will go better this time, but plans on leaving plenty of food and water for his cats, just in case something goes wrong.
“If you’re not scared to death, you’re an idiot,” Hughes said. “It’s scary as hell, but none of us are getting out of this world alive. I like to do extraordinary things that no one else can do, and no one in the history of mankind has designed, built and launched himself in his own rocket."
Flat-Earther or daredevil? You decide.
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