Konstantin Tsiolkovsky

Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky (Russian: Константин Эдуардович Циолковский, IPA: [kənstɐnˈtʲin ɪdʊˈardəvʲɪtɕ tsɨɐlˈkofskʲɪj] (listen); Polish: Konstanty Edward Ciołkowski 17 September [O.S. 5 September] 1857  – 19 September 1935) was a Russian and Soviet rocket scientist and pioneer of the astronautic theory. Along with the French Robert Esnault-Pelterie, the German-Romanian Hermann Oberth and the American Robert H. Goddard, he is considered to be one of the founding fathers of modern rocketry and astronautics.[2][3] His works later inspired leading Soviet rocket engineers such as Sergei Korolev and Valentin Glushko and contributed to the success of the Soviet space program.

Tsiolkovsky spent most of his life in a log house on the outskirts of Kaluga, about 200 km (120 mi) southwest of Moscow. A recluse by nature, his unusual habits made him seem bizarre to his fellow townsfolk.[4]

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
Konstantin Tsiolkovsky 1930s2
Born17 September [O.S. 5 September] 1857[1]
Died19 September 1935 (aged 78)[1]
Known forTsiolkovsky's rocket equation
Scientific career
FieldsAstronautic theory

Early life

Tsiolkovsky was born in Izhevskoye (now in Spassky District, Ryazan Oblast), in the Russian Empire, to a middle-class family. His father, Edward Tsiolkovsky was a Polish forester of Russian Orthodox faith who was exiled to Russia;[5] his mother was of mixed Volga Tatar and Russian origin.[6][7] His father was successively a forester, teacher, and minor government official. At the age of 10, Konstantin caught scarlet fever and became hard of hearing. When he was 13, his mother died.[8] He was not admitted to elementary schools because of his hearing problem, so he was self-taught.[8] As a reclusive home-schooled child, he passed much of his time by reading books and became interested in mathematics and physics. As a teenager, he began to contemplate the possibility of space travel.[1]

Tsiolkovsky spent three years attending a Moscow library where Russian cosmism proponent Nikolai Fyodorov worked. He later came to believe that colonizing space would lead to the perfection of the human race, with immortality and a carefree existence.[9]

Additionally, inspired by the fiction of Jules Verne, Tsiolkovsky theorized many aspects of space travel and rocket propulsion. He is considered the father of spaceflight and the first person to conceive the space elevator, becoming inspired in 1895 by the newly constructed Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Despite the youth's growing knowledge of physics, his father was concerned that he would not be able to provide for himself financially as an adult and brought him back home at the age of 19 after learning that he was overworking himself and going hungry. Afterwards, Tsiolkovsky passed the teacher's exam and went to work at a school in Borovsk near Moscow. He also met and married his wife Varvara Sokolova during this time. Despite being stuck in Kaluga, a small town far from major learning centers, Tsiolkovsky managed to make scientific discoveries on his own.

The first two decades of the 20th century were marred by personal tragedy. Tsiolkovsky's son Ignaty committed suicide in 1902, and in 1908 many of his accumulated papers were lost in a flood. In 1911, his daughter Lyubov was arrested for engaging in revolutionary activities.

Scientific achievements

Циолковский за работой
Tsiolkovsky at work
Konstantin Tsiolkovsky 1930s
Tsiolkovsky ca. 1930s

Tsiolkovsky stated that he developed the theory of rocketry only as a supplement to philosophical research on the subject.[10] He wrote more than 400 works including approximately 90 published pieces on space travel and related subjects.[11] Among his works are designs for rockets with steering thrusters, multistage boosters, space stations, airlocks for exiting a spaceship into the vacuum of space, and closed-cycle biological systems to provide food and oxygen for space colonies.

Tsiolkovsky's first scientific study dates back to 1880–1881. He wrote a paper called "Theory of Gases," in which he outlined the basis of the kinetic theory of gases, but after submitting it to the Russian Physico-Chemical Society (RPCS), he was informed that his discoveries had already been made 25 years earlier. Undaunted, he pressed ahead with his second work, "The Mechanics of the Animal Organism". It received favorable feedback, and Tsiolkovsky was made a member of the Society. Tsiolkovsky's main works after 1884 dealt with four major areas: the scientific rationale for the all-metal balloon (airship), streamlined airplanes and trains, hovercraft, and rockets for interplanetary travel.

In 1892, he was transferred to a new teaching post in Kaluga where he continued to experiment. During this period, Tsiolkovsky began working on a problem that would occupy much of his time during the coming years: an attempt to build an all-metal dirigible that could be expanded or shrunk in size.

Tsiolkovsky developed the first aerodynamics laboratory in Russia in his apartment. In 1897, he built the first Russian wind tunnel with an open test section and developed a method of experimentation using it. In 1900, with a grant from the Academy of Sciences, he made a survey using models of the simplest shapes and determined the drag coefficients of the sphere, flat plates, cylinders, cones, and other bodies. Tsiolkovsky's work in the field of aerodynamics was a source of ideas for Russian scientist Nikolay Zhukovsky, the father of modern aerodynamics and hydrodynamics. Tsiolkovsky described the airflow around bodies of different geometric shapes, but because the RPCS did not provide any financial support for this project, he was forced to pay for it largely out of his own pocket.

Tsiolkovsky studied the mechanics of powered flying machines, which were designated "dirigibles" (the word "airship" had not yet been invented). Tsiolkovsky first proposed the idea of an all-metal dirigible and built a model of it. The first printed work on the airship was "A Controllable Metallic Balloon" (1892), in which he gave the scientific and technical rationale for the design of an airship with a metal sheath. Progressive for his time, Tsiolkovsky was not supported on the airship project, and the author was refused a grant to build the model. An appeal to the General Aviation Staff of the Russian army also had no success. In 1892, he turned to the new and unexplored field of heavier-than-air aircraft. Tsiolkovsky's idea was to build an airplane with a metal frame. In the article "An Airplane or a Birdlike (Aircraft) Flying Machine" (1894) are descriptions and drawings of a monoplane, which in its appearance and aerodynamics anticipated the design of aircraft that would be constructed 15 to 18 years later. In an Aviation Airplane, the wings have a thick profile with a rounded front edge and the fuselage is faired. But work on the airplane, as well as on the airship, did not receive recognition from the official representatives of Russian science, and Tsiolkovsky's further research had neither monetary nor moral support. In 1914, he displayed his models of all-metal dirigibles at the Aeronautics Congress in St. Petersburg but met with a lukewarm response.

Disappointed at this, Tsiolkovsky gave up on space and aeronautical problems with the onset of World War I and instead turned his attention to the problem of alleviating poverty. This occupied his time during the war years until the Russian Revolution in 1917.

Starting in 1896, Tsiolkovsky systematically studied the theory of motion of rocket apparatus. Thoughts on the use of the rocket principle in the cosmos were expressed by him as early as 1883, and a rigorous theory of rocket propulsion was developed in 1896. Tsiolkovsky derived the formula, which he called the "formula of aviation", establishing the relationship between:

  • change in the rocket's speed ()
  • exhaust velocity of the engine ()
  • initial (M0) and final (M1) mass of the rocket

After writing out this equation, Tsiolkovsky recorded the date: 10 May 1897. In the same year, the formula for the motion of a body of variable mass was published in the thesis of the Russian mathematician I. V. Meshchersky ("Dynamics of a Point of Variable Mass," I. V. Meshchersky, St. Petersburg, 1897).

His most important work, published in May 1903, was Exploration of Outer Space by Means of Rocket Devices (Russian: Исследование мировых пространств реактивными приборами).[12] Tsiolkovsky calculated, using the Tsiolkovsky equation,[13]:1 that the horizontal speed required for a minimal orbit around the Earth is 8,000 m/s (5 miles per second) and that this could be achieved by means of a multistage rocket fueled by liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen. In the article "Exploration of Outer Space by Means of Rocket Devices", it was proved for the first time that a rocket could perform space flight. In this article and its subsequent sequels (1911 and 1914), he developed some ideas of missiles and considered the use of liquid rocket engines.

The outward appearance of Tsiolkovsky's spacecraft design, published in 1903, was a basis for modern spaceship design.[14] The design had a hull divided into three main sections.[15] The pilot and copilot were in the first section, the second and third sections held the liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen needed to fuel the spacecraft.[16]

However, the result of the first publication was not what Tsiolkovsky expected. No foreign scientists appreciated his research, which today is a major scientific discipline. In 1911 he published the second part of the work "Exploration of Outer Space by Means of Rocket Devices". Here Tsiolkovsky evaluated the work needed to overcome the force of gravity, determined the speed needed to propel the device into the solar system ("escape velocity"), and examined calculation of flight time. The publication of this article made a splash in the scientific world, Tsiolkovsky found many friends among his fellow scientists.

In 1926–1929, Tsiolkovsky solved the practical problem regarding the role played by rocket fuel in getting to escape velocity and leaving the Earth. He showed that the final speed of the rocket depends on the rate of gas flowing from it and on how the weight of the fuel relates to the weight of the empty rocket.

Tsiolkovsky conceived a number of ideas that have been later used in rockets. They include: gas rudders (graphite) for controlling a rocket's flight and changing the trajectory of its center of mass, the use of components of the fuel to cool the outer shell of the spacecraft (during re-entry to Earth) and the walls of the combustion chamber and nozzle, a pump system for feeding the fuel components, the optimal descent trajectory of the spacecraft while returning from space, etc. In the field of rocket propellants, Tsiolkovsky studied a large number of different oxidizers and combustible fuels and recommended specific pairings: liquid oxygen and hydrogen, and oxygen with hydrocarbons. Tsiolkovsky did much fruitful work on the creation of the theory of jet aircraft, and invented his chart Gas Turbine Engine. In 1927 he published the theory and design of a train on an air cushion. He first proposed a "bottom of the retractable body" chassis. However, space flight and the airship were the main problems to which he devoted his life. Tsiolkovsky had been developing the idea of the hovercraft since 1921, publishing a fundamental paper on it in 1927, entitled "Air Resistance and the Express Train" (Russian: Сопротивление воздуха и скорый по́езд).[17][18] In 1929, Tsiolkovsky proposed the construction of multistage rockets in his book Space Rocket Trains (Russian: Космические ракетные поезда).

Tsiolkovsky championed the idea of the diversity of life in the universe and was the first theorist and advocate of human spaceflight.

Tsiolkovsky never built a rocket; he apparently did not expect many of his theories to ever be implemented.

Hearing problems did not prevent the scientist from having a good understanding of music, as outlined in his work "The Origin of Music and Its Essence."

Later life

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky 1934
Tsiolkovsky in 1934

Although Tsiolkovsky supported the Bolshevik Revolution, he did not particularly flourish under a communist system. Eager to promote science and technology, the new Soviet government elected him a member of the Socialist Academy in 1918.[13]:1–2,8 He worked as a high school mathematics teacher until retiring in 1920 at the age of 63. In 1921, he received a lifetime pension.[13]:1–2,8

Only late in his lifetime was Tsiolkovsky honored for his pioneering work. In particular, his support of eugenics made him politically unpopular.[19] However, from the mid 1920s onwards the importance of his other work was acknowledged, and he was honoured for it and the Soviet state provided financial backing for his research. He was initially popularized in Soviet Russia in 1931–1932 mainly by two writers:[20] Iakov Perel'man and Nikolai Rynin. Tsiolkovsky died in Kaluga on 19 September 1935 after undergoing an operation for stomach cancer. He bequeathed his life's work to the Soviet state.[9]


Although many called his ideas impractical,[13]:8,117 Tsiolkovsky influenced later rocket scientists throughout Europe, like Wernher von Braun. Russian search teams at Peenemünde found a German translation of a book by Tsiolkovsky of which "almost every page...was embellished by von Braun's comments and notes."[13]:27 Leading Soviet rocket-engine designer Valentin Glushko and rocket designer Sergey Korolev studied Tsiolkovsky's works as youths,[13]:6–7,333 and both sought to turn Tsiolkovsky's theories into reality.[13]:3,166,182,187,205–206,208 In particular, Korolev saw traveling to Mars as the more important priority,[13]:208,333,337 until in 1964 he decided to compete with the American Project Apollo for the moon.[13]:404

In 1989, Tsiolkovsky was inducted into the International Air & Space Hall of Fame at the San Diego Air & Space Museum.[21]

Philosophical work

The cover of the book The Will of the Universe. The Unknown Intelligence by Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, 1928, considered to be a work of Cosmist philosophy.

Tsiolkovsky wrote a book called The Will of the Universe. The Unknown Intelligence in 1928 in which he propounded a philosophy of panpsychism. He believed humans would eventually colonize the Milky Way galaxy. His thought preceded the Space Age by several decades, and some of what he foresaw in his imagination has come into being since his death. Tsiolkovsky also did not believe in traditional religious cosmology, but instead (and to the chagrin of the Soviet authorities) he believed in a cosmic being that governed humans as "marionettes, mechanical puppets, machines, movie characters",[22] thereby adhering to a mechanical view of the universe, which he believed would be controlled in the millennia to come through the power of human science and industry.


Chertrg Tsiolkovsky
Draft first space ship by Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
  • In 1964, The Monument to the Conquerors of Space was erected to celebrate the achievements of the Soviet people in space exploration. Located in Moscow, the monument is 107 meters (350 feet) tall and covered with titanium cladding. The main part of the monument is a giant obelisk topped by a rocket and resembling in shape the exhaust plume of the rocket. A statue of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, the precursor of astronautics, is located in front of the obelisk.
  • The State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics in Kaluga now bears his name.
  • The town Uglegorsk in Amur Oblast was renamed Tsiolkovsky by Russian president Vladimir Putin in 2015.
  • The crater Tsiolkovskiy (the most prominent crater on the far side of the Moon) was named after him, while asteroid 1590 Tsiolkovskaja was named after his wife.[23][24] (The Soviet Union obtained naming rights by operating Luna 3, the first space device to successfully transmit images of the side of the moon not seen from Earth.[25])
  • There is a statue of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky directly outside the Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
  • There is a Google Doodle honoring the famous pioneer.[26]

In popular culture

  • Tsiolkovsky was consulted for the script to the early Soviet science-fiction film, Kosmicheskiy reys.[27]
  • SF writer Alexander Beliaev has written a book in which a city and a space station are named after him.
  • A lunar station is named Tsiolkovsky in Stanisław Lem's novel Tales of Pirx the Pilot, story "The Conditional Reflex".
  • The Soviet ship in Harry Turtledove's 1990 Mars exploration novel A World of Difference is named Tsiolkovsky.
  • In Princeton physicist and space colony advocate Gerard K. O'Neill's book of futurism, 2081: A Hopeful View of the Human Future, the protagonist rides a spaceship named the "Konstantin Tsiolokovsky" from his home in a space colony at twice the orbital radius of Pluto to the Earth of 2081.
  • A space station is named Tsiolkovsky 1 in William Gibson's short story "Hinterlands".
  • The character Aeolia Schenberg in the anime series Mobile Suit Gundam 00 is based on Tsiolkovsky.
  • The Zvezda module of the International Space Station has photos of Tsiolkovsky and Yuri Gagarin posted on the wall above the aft hatchway.[28]
  • The Mars-based space elevators in the Horus Heresy novel Mechanicum by Graham McNeill set in the Warhammer 40k universe are called "Tsiolkovsky Towers".[29]
  • The science ship in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Naked Now" is named after him.
  • Episode eight of Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko is called "Tsiolkovsky's Prayer".
  • In the book Limit, written by Frank Schätzing in 2009, the theory of the Space Elevator is applied in a hypothetical future.
  • The video-games Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri and Sid Meier's Alien Crossfire use one of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky's quotes when the technology of the Space Elevator is developed.
  • In the video-game Mass Effect 2, one of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky's quotes is used in an in-game advertisement.
  • In the comic book series Assassin's Creed: The Fall, the leader of the Assassin Order reads from The Will of the Universe.
  • In a 2015 episode of Murdoch Mysteries, set in about 1905, an inventor works with Tsiolkovsky's daughter to build a suborbital rocket based on his ideas and be the first man in space; a second rocket built to the same design is adapted as a ballistic missile for purposes of extortion.


Tsiolk na lune (pic Gofman) 3
Illustration by A. Gofman from On the Moon

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e Konstantin Eduardovich Tsiolkovsky. Encyclopaedia Britannica
  2. ^ "International Space Hall of Fame :: New Mexico Museum of Space History :: Inductee Profile". www.nmspacemuseum.org. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  3. ^ "Konstantin E. Tsiolkovsky". Aeronautics Learning Laboratory for Science Technology, and Research (ALLSTAR) Network. 12 March 2004. Archived from the original on 28 October 2015. Retrieved 10 June 2015.
  4. ^ Lewis, Cathleen Susan. 2008. The Red Stuff: A History of the Public and Material Culture of Early Human Spaceflight in the U.S.S.R. Ann Arbor, Mich: ProQuest LLC. pp. 57–59. ISBN 9780549466796.
  5. ^ A Pictorial History of Rockets. NASA. 2011. p. 4.
  6. ^ Земной путь звездоплавателя. melnikoff.com
  7. ^ "Константин Циолковский. Биография, 18 фото". Top-antropos.com. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  8. ^ a b Narins, Brigham (2001), Notable Scientists from 1900 to the Present, 5, Farmington Hills, MI: The Gale Group, pp. 2256–2258, ISBN 0-7876-5454-X
  9. ^ a b The life of Konstantin Eduardovitch Tsiolkovsky 1857–1935 Archived 15 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Informatics.org (19 September 1935). Retrieved 4 May 2012.
  10. ^ Kazyutinski V. V. (2003). "Космическая философия К.Э. Циолковского: за и против". Земля и Вселенная. 4: 43–54. Archived from the original on 11 February 2007.
  11. ^ Tsiolkovsky and his legacy Archived 22 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine on russianspaceweb.com
  12. ^ Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin E. (1903), "The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reaction Devices (Исследование мировых пространств реактивными приборами)", The Science Review (in Russian) (5), archived from the original on 19 October 2008, retrieved 22 September 2008
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h i Siddiqi, Asif A, Challenge To Apollo: The Soviet Union and the Space Race, 1945–1974, NASA, archived from the original on 8 October 2006
  14. ^ Miller, p. 88
  15. ^ Miller, p. 95
  16. ^ Miller, p. 96
  17. ^ Gillispie, Charles Coulston (1980), Dictionary of Scientific Biography, Charles Scribner's Sons, p. 484, ISBN 0-684-12925-6
  18. ^ Air Cushion Vehicle History (in Russian), Neptune Hovercraft Shipbuilding Company, archived from the original on 2 October 2008, retrieved 22 September 2008
  19. ^ Konstantin Tsiolkovsky – Russiapedia Space and aviation Prominent Russians. Russiapedia.rt.com. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
  20. ^ Siddiqi, Asif A (26 February 2010), The Red Rockets' Glare: Spaceflight and the Soviet Imagination, 1857–1957, pp. 62–65, ISBN 9780521897600
  21. ^ Sprekelmeyer, Linda ed. (2006) These We Honor: The International Aerospace Hall of Fame. Donning Co. Publishers. ISBN 978-1-57864-397-4.
  22. ^ Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin (1932) "Is There God?" Russian Academy of Sciences
  23. ^ The Life of Konstantin Eduardovitch Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin E. Tsiolkovsky State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics, archived from the original on 15 June 2012, retrieved 22 September 2008
  24. ^ Konstantin E. Tsiolkovsky Scientific Biography, Konstantin E. Tsiolkovsky State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics, archived from the original on 7 September 2008, retrieved 22 September 2008
  25. ^ Soviet Missions to the Moon. Nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov. Retrieved 4 May 2012.
  26. ^ "Konstantin Tsiolkovsky's 155th birthday". Google Doodles. Google. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  27. ^ Hall, Phil (9 July 2010). "The Bootleg Files: The Space Voyage". Film Threat. Retrieved 12 July 2010.
  28. ^ International Space Station Imagery. Spaceflight.nasa.gov (31 October 2004). Retrieved 4 May 2012.
  29. ^ McNeill, Graham (2008), Mechanicum: war comes to Mars (print), Horus Heresy [book series], 9, Map by Adrian Wood (1st UK ed.), Nottingham, UK: Black Library, [Map:] "The Tharsis Quadrangle of Mars" [pp. 8–9 (not numbered), context at p. 8], ISBN 978-1-84416-664-0 Location of "Tsiolkovsky towers" noted in a story-related map, with several mentions in the book's body matter, including pp. 218, 368, 370, and others.

Cited sources

  • Miller, Ron (1993). The Dream Machines. Krieger Publishing Company. ISBN 0-89464-039-9.

Further reading

  • Andrews, James T. (2009), Red Cosmos: K.E. Tsiolkovskii, Grandfather of Soviet Rocketry, Texas A&M University Press, ISBN 978-1-60344-168-1 Review
  • Georgiy Stepanovich Vetrov, S. P. Korolyov and space. First steps. — 1994 M. Nauka, ISBN 5-02-000214-3.

External links

1590 Tsiolkovskaja

1590 Tsiolkovskaja, provisional designation 1933 NA, is a stony Flora asteroid from the inner regions of the asteroid belt, approximately 11 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 1 July 1933, by Soviet–Russian astronomer Grigory Neujmin at Simeiz Observatory, on the Crimean peninsula. It was named for rocket scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky.


Astronautics (or cosmonautics) is the theory and practice of navigation beyond Earth's atmosphere.

The term astronautics (originally astronautique in French) was coined in the 1920s by J.-H. Rosny, president of the Goncourt academy, in analogy with aeronautics. Because there is a degree of technical overlap between the two fields, the term aerospace is often used to describe both at once. In 1930, Robert Esnault-Pelterie published the first book on the new research field.As with aeronautics, the restrictions of mass, temperatures, and external forces require that applications in space survive extreme conditions: high-grade vacuum, the radiation bombardment of interplanetary space and the magnetic belts of low Earth orbit. Space launch vehicles must withstand titanic forces, while satellites can experience huge variations in temperature in very brief periods. Extreme constraints on mass cause astronautical engineers to face the constant need to save mass in the design in order to maximize the actual payload that reaches orbit.


Borovsk (Russian: Бо́ровск) is a town and the administrative center of Borovsky District of Kaluga Oblast, Russia, located on the Protva River just south from the oblast's border with Moscow Oblast. Population: 12,283 (2010 Census); 11,917 (2002 Census); 13,405 (1989 Census); 12,000 (1969).

Cosmic Voyage (1936 film)

Cosmic Voyage or The Space Voyage (Russian: Космический рейс, translit. Kosmicheskiy reys: Fantasticheskaya novella) is a 1936 Soviet science fiction film produced by Mosfilm. It was one of the earliest films to represent a realistic spaceflight, including weightlessness.

Cosmonauts Alley

Cosmonauts Alley (Russian: аллея Космонавтов) is a wide avenue in northern Moscow leading to the Russian Museum of Cosmonautics and the Monument to the Conquerors of Space . The pedestrian-only avenue connects the museum and monument to the VDNKh subway station.The park-like avenue is punctuated by large stone memorials of important figures in the Soviet space program. At its terminus below the monument, a larger-than-life statue of Soviet rocket pioneer Konstantin Tsiolkovsky (1857–1935) sits facing back down the path.

In 2008, Cosmonauts Alley was under a reconstruction, adding: A model of the Solar System, Monument of Sergey Korolev and star-shaped granite monuments which display important events in Russian cosmonautics.

List of proposed future transport

Transport today is mostly powered by fossil fuel. The reason for this is the ease of use and the existence of mature technologies harnessing this fuel source. Fossil fuels represent a concentrated, relatively compact source of energy. The drawbacks are that they are heavily polluting and rely on limited natural resources. There are many proposals to harness renewable forms of energy, to use fossil fuel more efficiently, or to use human power, or some hybrid of these, to move people and things.

The list below contains some forms of transport not in general use, but considered as possibilities in the future.

Air-propelled train (abandoned in 19th century)

Bounce tube pneumatic travel (Proposed by Robert A. Heinlein in 1956)

Vactrain also known as ET3

BiModal Glideway (Dual Mode Transportation System) travel (Proposed by William D. Davis, Jr. in 1967)

TEV Project (proposed by Will Jones in Summer 2012)

Kwik Lane also spelled as Qwik Lane (proposed by McCrary Personal Transport Systems, LLC in 2011)

Dual-mode vehicle


Intelligent Transportation System

Jet pack

Backpack helicopter

Launch loop

Orbital ring

Personal air vehicle (Flying car)

Personal rapid transit

Rolling road (proposed by Robert A. Heinlein in 1940)

Slidewalk (proposed by Robert A. Heinlein in 1948)

Light sail (proposed by Jack Vance in 1962)

Space elevator (proposed by Russian scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky in 1895)

Spacecraft propulsion or Space transport



Metal-clad airship

Metal-clad airships are airships which have a very thin airtight metal envelope, rather than the usual fabric envelope. This shell may be either internally braced as with the designs of David Schwarz, or monocoque as in the ZMC-2. Only four ships of this type are known to have been built, and only two actually flew: Schwarz's aluminum ship of 1893 collapsed on inflation; Schwarz's second airship flew at Tempelhof, Berlin in 1897, landed but then collapsed; the ZMC-2 flew 752 flights between 1929 and scrapping in 1941; while the Slate City of Glendale, was built in 1929 but never flew.

Out of the Cradle (book)

Out of the Cradle: Exploring the Frontiers beyond Earth is a book written and illustrated by planetary scientist William K. Hartmann, Ron Miller and Pamela Lee. Cradle describes potential manned space missions to the planets, moons and asteroids of the Solar System. The approximately 100 space art illustrations were in large part based on the plethora of new photographs from the unmanned space probes Pioneer 11, Voyager 1, and the Viking Lander, available at the time of publication, with scientific extrapolation of the likely appearance of various planetary surfaces. The title is derived from a quote from Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, which is included in the preface: "Earth is the cradle of humanity, but one cannot live in the cradle forever."


A recluse is a person who lives in voluntary seclusion from the public and society. The word is from the Latin recludere, which means "shut up" or "sequester". Historically, the word referred to a hermit's total isolation from the world. Examples are Symeon of Trier, who lived within the great Roman gate Porta Nigra with permission from the Archbishop of Trier, or Theophan the Recluse, the 19th-century swaggers Orthodox monk who was later glorified as a saint. Celebrated figures who spent, or have spent, significant portions of their lives as recluses include Virgil, Michelangelo, Isaac Newton, Emily Brontë, J. D. Salinger, Bobby Fischer, Emily Dickinson, Gustave Flaubert, Paul Cézanne, Nikola Tesla, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, H. P. Lovecraft, Marie Curie, Marcel Proust, Howard Hughes, Greta Garbo, Mina Mazzini, Jackson Pollock, Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli, Glenn Gould, Jean-Luc Godard, Thomas Pynchon, John Swartzwelder, Paul Allen, Layne Staley, Richard Proenneke, Syd Barrett and Michael Jackson.

Russian cosmism

Russian cosmism is a philosophical and cultural movement that emerged in Russia in the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Science and technology in the Soviet Union

Science and technology in the Soviet Union served as an important part of national politics, practices, and identity. From the time of Lenin until the dissolution of the USSR in the early 1990s, both science and technology were intimately linked to the ideology and practical functioning of the Soviet state, and were pursued along paths both similar and distinct from models in other countries. Many great scientists who worked in Imperial Russia, such as Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, continued to work in the USSR and gave birth to Soviet science.

The Soviet government made the development and advancement of science a national priority, emphasizing science at all levels of education and showering top scientists with honours. Very large numbers of engineers graduated every year. Soviet scientists won acclaim in several fields, marked by a highly developed pure science and innovation at the theoretical level, though interpretation and application fell short. They were at the cutting edge of science in fields such as mathematics and in several branches of physical science, notably theoretical nuclear physics, chemistry, and astronomy. The physical chemist and physicist Nikolay Semenov was the first Soviet citizen to win a Nobel Prize, in 1956 among several other Soviet Nobel Prize winners and the mathematician Sergei Novikov was the first Soviet citizen to win a Fields Medal in 1970 followed by Grigory Margulis in 1978 and Vladimir Drinfeld in 1990.

Soviet technology was most highly developed in the fields of nuclear physics, where the arms race with the West convinced policy makers to set aside sufficient resources for research. Due to a crash program directed by Igor Kurchatov (based on spies of Cambridge Five), the Soviet Union was the second nation to develop an atomic bomb, in 1949, four years after the United States. The Soviet Union detonated a hydrogen bomb in 1953, a mere ten months after the United States. Space exploration was also highly developed: in October 1957 the Soviet Union launched the first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, into orbit; in April 1961 a Soviet cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, became the first man in space. The Soviets maintained a strong space program until economic problems led to cutbacks in the 1980s.

Although the sciences were less rigorously censored than other fields such as art, there were several examples of suppression of ideas. In the most notorious, agronomist Trofim Lysenko refused to accept the chromosome theory of heredity usually accepted by modern genetics. Claiming his theories corresponded to Marxism, he managed to talk Joseph Stalin in 1948 into banning the practice and teaching of population genetics and several other related fields of biological research; this decision was only reversed in the 1960s.

Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium

The Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium is located on the grounds of the Brisbane Botanic Gardens in the suburb of Toowong, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. The Planetarium was officially opened on 24 May 1978.

The Planetarium is named after Sir Thomas Brisbane, governor of the colony of New South Wales (1821 - 1825) and well known Scottish astronomer who established the first significant observatory at Parramatta, Australia, in 1822 for mapping the southern skies. The Planetarium is located about 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) from the Central Business District, and is administered by the Brisbane City Council.

The Planetarium features the 12.5m diameter Cosmic Skydome (hemispherical planetarium theatre) with a recently upgraded, state of the art Sky-Skan digital dome projection system, console and refurbished seats for a maximum concentric seating capacity of 133. An observatory contains a permanently mounted Zeiss 15cm refractor and a Meade 25.4cm "Go To" Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. Extensive space exploration and astronomy displays in the Planetarium's Foyer and Gallery include the 1969 Moon landing with a replica of Neil Armstrong's space suit and numerous models of spacecraft and astronomical instruments. A mini-theatre usually features a regularly updated Space Telescope Science Institute web feed.

The Planetarium runs more than 1,300 regular shows per year in the Cosmic Skydome for public and school groups, observing sessions in the observatory and occasional public field nights. The original Zeiss star projector was removed from the Cosmic Skydome during the upgrade in 2010 and was placed on display in the foyer in early 2012. A replacement optical star projector by Ohira Tech was installed in the Cosmic Skydome in early 2013.

Access to the display areas and mini theatre are free. Admission charges apply for the Cosmic Skydome and the observatory. The Planetarium is closed on Mondays and is usually closed for up to two weeks for servicing work following the December/January school holidays.

Outside exhibits adjacent to the Planetarium include a statue of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, the Father of Cosmonautics and a large sundial in the Sundial Court.

Society for Studies of Interplanetary Travel

The Society for Studies of Interplanetary Travel (Russian: Общество изучения межпланетных сообщений or OIMS) was founded in Moscow in May 1924. It was a spin-off of a military science society at the Zhukovsky Airforce Academy, and was chaired by Grigory Kramarov. Its 200 charter members included important Soviet space-exploration and rocketry experts such as Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, Fridrikh Tsander, and Vladimir Vetchinkin. The society allowed engineers and educators to meet and discuss space travel, and it organized public educational events.OIMS hosted a famous public debate on October 4, 1924 to discuss the idea of Robert Goddard to launch a rocket to the Moon.The society existed for only about one year.

Takeoff (film)

Take-Off (Russian: Взлёт, translit. Vzlyot) is a 1979 Soviet biopic about the Russian rocket scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, directed by Savva Kulish and based on a screenplay by Oleg Osetinsky.

Savva Kulish was nominated for this film at the 11th Moscow International Film Festival, winning the Silver Prize.

Tsiolkovskiy (crater)

Tsiolkovskiy is a large lunar impact crater that is located on the far side of the Moon. Named for Russian scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, it lies in the southern hemisphere, to the west of the large crater Gagarin, and northwest of Milne. Just to the south is Waterman, with Neujmin to the south-southwest. The crater protrudes into the neighbouring Fermi, an older crater of comparable size that does not have a lava-flooded floor.

Tsiolkovsky (disambiguation)

Tsiolkovsky (Russian: Циолко́вский) may refer to:

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky (1857–1935), Russian and Soviet rocket scientist

Tsiolkovsky, Amur Oblast (formerly Uglegorsk), Russian town named for Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovsky State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics in Kaluga; named for Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovsky rocket equation, named for Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovsky tower, specelaunch concept developed by Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovsky mission, Soviet space program named for Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovskiy Island, Antarctic island named for Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovskiy (crater), Moon crater named for Tsiolkovsky

1590 Tsiolkovskaja, asteroid named for Tsiolkovsky

Tsiolkovsky State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics

The Konstantin E. Tsiolkovsky State Museum of the History of Cosmonautics (Russian: Государственный музей истории космонавтики имени К.Э.Циолковского) is the first museum in the world dedicated to the history of space exploration. It was opened on 3 October 1967 in Kaluga, and is named after Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, a school master and rocket science pioneer who lived most of his life in this city. The driving force behind the creation of the museum was Sergei Korolyov, chief designer of RKK Energiya. The building was designed by Boris Barkhin, Evgeny Kireev, Nataliya Orlova, Valentin Strogy and Kirill Fomin, and the cornerstone was laid by Yuri Gagarin on 13 June 1961. The museum has over 100,000 visitors per year and has 127 employees, of whom 43 are curators.

Tsiolkovsky rocket equation

The Tsiolkovsky rocket equation, classical rocket equation, or ideal rocket equation is a mathematical equation that describes the motion of vehicles that follow the basic principle of a rocket: a device that can apply acceleration to itself using thrust by expelling part of its mass with high velocity and thereby move due to the conservation of momentum.

The equation relates the delta-v (the maximum change of velocity of the rocket if no other external forces act) with the effective exhaust velocity and the initial and final mass of a rocket, or other reaction engine.

For any such maneuver (or journey involving a sequence of such maneuvers):


is delta-v – the maximum change of velocity of the vehicle (with no external forces acting).
is the initial total mass, including propellant, also known as wet mass.
is the final total mass without propellant, also known as dry mass.
is the effective exhaust velocity, where:
is the specific impulse in dimension of time.
is standard gravity.
is the natural logarithm function.
Yuri Pavlovich Shvets

Yuri Pavlovich Shvets (Russian: Юрий Павлович Швец; born in Poltava 1902 – 1972) was a Soviet cinematic artist, famous for art and scenery especially of fantasy and science-fiction films.

As a youth, Shvets held several jobs, then studied at and graduated from both the Music and Drama Institute of Mykola Lysenko and the Arts Institute in Kiev

.The scientific accuracy of Shvets' work was praised by the Russian rocket scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky when the two met in 1934.Shvets did artwork for over fifty films, including:

(1935) Kosmicheskiy reys (Cosmic Journey or Space flight)

(1935) Novii Gulliver (The New Gulliver)

(1959) Nebo Zovyot (The Sky Calls)

(1951) Вселенная (Universe)

(1965) Luna (Moon)

(1968) Марс (Mars)

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