Science 5 min read

Flat Earther to Launch Himself in a Homemade Rocket on Saturday

Elena Schweitzer |

Elena Schweitzer |

A flat Earth theory believer built his own rocket that he will launch on Saturday in hopes to prove that our planet is indeed flat.

One man is on a mission to launch himself in a homemade rocket 1,800 feet above the ground. 61-year-old Mike Hughes is called ‘Mad’ Mike among other things including eccentric, quirky, foolhardy, insane. However, these nicknames are not enough to stop this flat Earther from proving that our planet is not round.

“John Glenn and Neil Armstrong are Freemasons. Once you understand that, you understand the roots of the deception.”  -Mike Hughes

Nothing can stop him from reaching his dream. Not half a millennia of scientific research, not a quick drive up Pikes Peak on a clear day, and definitely not a NASA astronaut’s words of caution.

According to a report from the Associated Press, Hughes plans to launch and ride the homemade rocket he built on Saturday over a ghost town called Amboy in California. Unfortunately, for someone who’s been able to make a rocket ship from scratch, Hughes is not a believer in science.

“I don’t believe in science,” Hughes told AP. “I know about aerodynamics and fluid dynamics and how things move through the air, about the certain size of rocket nozzles, and thrust. But that’s not science, that’s just a formula. There’s no difference between science and science fiction.”

#MadMike to launch himself in his homemade rocket on Saturday! #flatEarthClick To Tweet

How the Homemade Rocket was Built

For the record, Hughes is not an engineer or scientist. He has no background in rocket science and is not affiliated with any space agency. Thus, creating a homemade rocket proves just how far this limousine driver’s belief and ingenuity could take him.

Yes, you read that right. Hughes is a limo driver who only earns around $15 an hour. Now, you might be asking the same question: how can a simple man without any background in physics or propulsion and no monetary resources afford to build a rocket?

While rocket science is the epitome of complex scientific study, this California flat Earth theory believer defied the odds because of his firm belief and inventiveness.

Mike Hughe's homemade rocket ship
Mike Hughe’s homemade rocket ship | Associated Press |

In 2016, he launched a Kickstarter campaign, From Garage to Outer Space, to help fund his project. Unfortunately, he was only able to raise $130 USD out of his $150,000 USD goal. But that didn’t stop him from going after his dream. Earlier this year, he called into a flat Earth community, Research Flat Earth, and asked for support.

“We were kind of looking for new sponsors for this. And I’m a believer in the flat Earth. I researched it for several months,” Hughes said in a Web show back in June. “John Glenn and Neil Armstrong are Freemasons. Once you understand that, you understand the roots of the deception.”

Apparently, Hughes was able to gain enough resources to construct his steam-powered rocket. It was reported that the rocket cost around $20,000 USD. Hughes built it at the Rocket Ranch in Apple Valley, California. It’s a five-acre property he leased from Waldo Stakes, CEO of Land Speed Research Vehicles, who’s working on a project to make a car that could travel 2,000 mph.

It was said that Stakes’ and Hughes’ relationship goes all the way back to when Mad Mike was first dreaming of building the rocket. While it was not the first time that Stakes received such a request, Hughes’ stood out from the rest because he would be building it all by himself.

Flat Earth theory believer Mike Hughes and his homemade rocket ship
Associated Press |

“Nothing is out of reach,” Stakes said. “Anything can be done. You just have to put enough money, time and thought into it.”

Hughes scrounged for parts to complete his project. He went to different metal shops to find aluminum for his rocket and used an aircraft air filter to construct the rocket nozzle. He then used cheap paint to give it a good varnish. His launch pad was attached to a motor home he bought for $1,500 USD. He said:

“I want to inspire others — and you have to do something incredible to get anybody’s attention.”

On the morning of his launch, November 24th, Hughes will heat about 70 gallons of water in a stainless steel tank and then blast off himself in the homemade rocket between 2 PM and 3 PM local time. The event will be aired on his Youtube Channel and website.

Hughes plans to reach an altitude of 1,800 feet before pulling two parachutes. The ‘mad’ flat Earth theory believer said that he’d travel around 1 mile through the air above the Mojave Desert and will be subjected to speeds of up to 800 kilometers per hour.

Asked if he’s scared, Hughes only has these words to say:

“It’s scary as hell. But none of us are getting out of this world alive.”

What is the Flat-Earth Theory?

The flat Earth theory is based on an archaic notion that the Earth’s surface has an end. Many ancient cultures held on to this belief until the dawn of new civilizations. It was in 6th century BCE when Greek philosopher Pythagoras first mentioned the spherical Earth model. But, it was only in 330 BCE, during the time of Aristotle, that the first evidence of the spherical Earth was introduced.

A flat Earth map by Orlando Ferguson
A flat Earth map by Orlando Ferguson (1893) | Wikipedia |

Despite the advent of space exploration, modern-day flat Earth societies still exist. One of which is the International Flat Earth Society. There are also individuals who support the said theory, including our man in this article, Mike Hughes.

Would you be brave enough to launch yourself in a homemade rocket?

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Rechelle Ann Fuertes

Rechelle is the current Managing Editor of Edgy. She's an experienced SEO content writer, researcher, social media manager, and visual artist. She enjoys traveling and spending time anywhere near the sea with her family and friends.

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