Science: Spacecraft
foam rocket   (+3, -4)  [vote for, against]
a rocket full of foam filler

instead of mixing hydrogen and oxygen put foam epoxy that solidifies (as a filler) in it and fire it. then the foam solidifies and if you run out of fuel or air up in space then climb down.
-- technobadger, Jan 15 2001

I remember a similar idea being proposed in the "Daedalus" section (long since defunct, alas) of New Scientist magazine many moons ago (I'm not saying Technobadger's idea isn't original: In fact I like it: just that it was also invented independently by Daedalus). Among the applications suggested for the foam rocket were emergency bridge construction. "Soldier! Bridge that canyon!". "Sir, yes sir!" <whoosh>. Instant bridge.
-- Skinny Rob, Jan 15 2001


what happens after the trip? do you just leave the foam there or does it have to be destroyed?
-- kaz, Dec 03 2001


we don't know, but it sure as hell would make architechture an interesting hobby
-- #1Fan, Jun 21 2002


How do you keep the "rocket" on track when you reach the stratosphere and get hit by the jetstream ? You're not going fast enough to use aerodynamic steering, and the sideforce will be considerable ....
-- 8th of 7, Jun 21 2002


This would be cool. You could shape the nozzle so that the pillar was hollow, and put stuff up it.
-- si_pronto, Jul 08 2002


space elevator!
-- tazmase2, Jul 19 2003


Bad - epoxy foam would ( almost certanly ) be too weak, you'd have to go all the ways up to geo stationary orbit, the foam would have a low specific impulse ( need to bring even more fule ), and it'd take forever to climb down.
-- my-nep, Oct 17 2003



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