Rockets (Missiles) - History of Rockets (Missiles)
Rocketry is a science that has developed through the combination of human ingenuity and curiosity. Although it may seem that rocketry is a more modern invention, it's origins actually can be found over three millennia ago.
Rockets today can travel across the world and into space carrying equipment, satellites, and bombs, but the first rocket carried an especially unusual passenger: a wooden pigeon. This wooden pigeon was attached to steam propelled wires and was paraded through the skies of southern Italy around 400 BC.
However, the use of steam as a propellant didn't last long, and soon the Chinese were developing gunpowder controlled rockets. These simple designs worked by lighting bamboo tubes filled with gunpowder on fire, which would propel the rocket upwards. These designs were developed around 1232 AD in order to shoot through the air during Chinese and Mongols war battles.
By the 17th century, an advanced understanding of physics allowed for a deeper scientific exploration into rocketry. During this time advancements made by a man named William Congreve resulted in the use of rockets for the British Military. By the 19th century, Russian scientists were beginning to use rockets for space exploration.
However, the rockets main impact has been through its use in the numerous 20th century wars. The most notable example of this is the development of the German V-2 rocket during World War II. This rocket was able to burn one ton of oxygen and alcohol every seven seconds! This allowed for the V-2s ability to destroy entire city blocks.
Development on this German design has allowed for the creation of numerous other military missiles, although these are typically much larger than the previous German design. Today, rockets are still continually used and developed to fight wars and destroy targets of interest that help the United States and other countries, secure the world from certain horrors.