Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A rockoon (derived from the terms rocket and balloon) was an extension to the rocket, which allowed the rocket to achieve further distance. The rockoon was a solid fuel rocket that, rather then being immediantly lit while on the ground, was first carried into the upper atmosphere by a gas-filled balloon, and then separated from the balloon when it had reached its maximum height and automatically ignited. This would allow the rocket to achieve a larger height, since the rocket did not have to move through thick air layers.
A disadvantage of a rockoon is that balloons can not be steered and consequently neither the direction the rocket moves in nor the region where it will fall down is easily adjustable. Therefore, a large area for the fall of the rocket is required for safety reasons.
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