Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin Eduardovich

Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin Eduardovich kənstəntyēnˈ ĕdwärˈdəvĭchˈ tsēōlkŏvˈskē [key], 1857–1935, Russian inventor and rocket expert. He lost his hearing in childhood, and, as he could not attend the usual schools, he educated himself. His most important work was concerned with the possibility of rocket flight into outer space. Tsiolkovsky's The Investigation of Outer Space by Means of Reaction Apparatus was presented in 1903. In this work, he discusses in mathematical terms the problems involved in overcoming the earth's gravitational pull by means of rockets. He also suggests the use of reaction vehicles for interplanetary flight. In 1929, Tsiolkovsky presented a design for a multistage rocket, which he called a rocket train. He also proposed the construction of artificial earth satellites, including manned space platforms to be used as way stations in interplanetary travel.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Space Exploration: Biographies