Search This Blog

Friday, 11 May 2018

That Time the U.S. Air Force Proposed Using Rockets to Stop the Earth’s Rotation

Daily Grail

he Cold War and resulting arms race between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R led each country to consider some rather crazy ideas through the decades, not least the idea that they could perhaps nuke the Moon. But in his 2017 book The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner, Daniel Ellsberg tells of a plan that was perhaps even crazier.

In 1960, Ellsberg – in his role as a strategic analyst at the RAND Corporation – was asked by the U.S. Air Force to assess a classified proposal on how to deal with a surprise nuclear attack by the Soviets attempting to take out America’s nuclear arsenal. Titled ‘Project Retro’, the proposal had “already gone through a number of Air Force offices”, with a routing chart showing that it had been seen and acted on by their Research and Development, and Science and Technology departments, among others.

This surprised Ellsberg, as in reading the proposal it became apparent that it was a rather crackpot idea: the scheme proposed, in some detail, that the U.S. should assemble “a huge rectangular array of one thousand first-stage Atlas engines” – the largest rocket propulsion engine available – “to be fastened securely to the earth in a horizontal position”, facing opposite to the direct of the Earth’s rotation.

For what reason, you might be asking?

Read more

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...