Flat-Earther blasts off into California sky in homemade steam-powered rocket

Katie Ramirez
March 26, 2018

"Mad" Mike Hughes, 61, a U.S. limo driver from California, was slightly injured when his steam-powered rocket launch ended with a hard landing in the Mojave Desert on Saturday.

The launch in the desert town - about 200 miles east of Los Angeles - was originally scheduled in November. There were also technical issues.

Hughes' ambitions reach far higher than 1,875 feet.

"This thing wants to kill you 10 different ways", said Mr Hughes, who said the crash left him with an aching back.

"I'm exhausted of people saying I chickened out and didn't build a rocket". "I'm exhausted of that stuff; I manned up and did it". "I manned up and did it", he said.

Hughes, 61, is a limo driver turned self-taught scientist.

While the 61-year-old man now works as a limo driver, Hughes has a history in building rockets and a deep understanding of physics. It was also finally mission accomplished after two failed attempts. They aimed for a maximum thrust of 350 psi, but it kept on dropping to 340.

Hughes informed the AP that beyond a hurting back, he was great as well as really felt "happy" the rocket launch mored than. Hughes finally blasted off into the sky sometime after 3 p.m. PDT without a countdown.

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Hughes reached a speed that Stakes estimated to be around 350 miles per hour before pulling his parachute. He had to pull the second parachute right after since his descent was too fast.

The daredevil landed bluntly with the rocket's nose breaking in two places - as it was created to do. "This thing will kill you in a heartbeat". However, he has no regrets about what he did.

"Am I glad I did it?"

Upon landing, he told the Associated Press that aside from an aching back, he was fine, and "relieved", adding "I'm exhausted of people saying I chickened out and didn't build a rocket". I won't be able to get out of bed, " he said. "At least I can go home and have dinner and see my cats tonight". The rocket landed about 1,500 feet from the launch ramp, Stakes said. "I hope he doesn't blow something up, " retired NASA astronaut Jerry Linenger said as Hughes caught the attention of people everywhere. He already announced to Facebook followers than he wants to build a Rockoon - a rocket carried by a balloon that would then separate and light post-separation.

Back in 2014, Mad Mike traveled 1,374 feet in the air in his vehicle and sustained injuries and he had to recover for three days.

The launch was postponed again later that month, as Hughes moved his launching point to a private property near Amboy, California, an unincorporated community in the Mojave Desert.

And even after all the conversations, all the arguments with "round-earthers", and several restarts on the project, Hughes maintains that his mission was bigger than proving the Earth is flat.

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