Chinese Inventions: Rockets

Brian Dashner Kamiron Hurd

About Rockets

The rocket and multi staged rockets: China, Eleventh and Twelfth CE Centuries . Around 1150 it crossed someone's mind to attach a comet-like fireworks to a four foot bamboo stick with an arrowhead and a balancing weight behind the feathers. To make the rockets multi-staged, a secondary set of rockets was attached to the shaft, their fuses lighted as the first rockets burned out. Rockets are first mentioned in the West in connection with a battle in Italy in 1380, arriving in the wake of Marco Polo.

Not all Chinese scientific and technological achievements lie in the remote past. Contemporary scientists include Chen Ning Yang and Tsung Dao Lee (Nobel Physics Prize, 1957), and Choh Hao Li (biochemist, world's foremost authority on the pituitary gland). Chinese physicists developed a nuclear reactor is 1958, an atomic bomb in 1964, a missile to deliver it in 1966, and put a satellite into orbit in 1970.

Ancient Chinese and Korean rocket technology demonstrated