Robert H. Goddard

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Robert H. Goddard was born on October 5, 1882, in Worcester, Massachusetts. He is considered to be the father of modern rocketry and space flight.

Early life

In 1908, Goddard graduated from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and went on to become a physics instructor at Worcester Technical University. This is where he received an M.A. in 1910 and a Ph.D. in 1911. He became a full professor Clark University in 1919. Since no one else thought his work, experimenting with rockets, promising, he seriously considered abandoning it. In September 1916 he wrote a letter to the Institution describing his rocket experiments, and requesting funds so he could continue with his work. On January 5, 1917, Goddard received a $5,000 grant from the Hodgkins Fund for atmospheric research. The Smithsonian continued supporting Goddard's research for many years.

The First Rocket

On March 16, 1926, Goddard successfully launched the world's first flight of a liquid-propelled rocket. This is often compared in its significance to the Wright Brothers first flight in 1903. Another important first came on July 17, 1929, when Goddard tested the first rocket to carry scientific instruments. The rocket carried a barometer and a camera. Robert Goddard made great contributions to the development of rockets and space flight. He is credited with 214 patents, with 131 filed after his death. Goddard died on August 10, 1945, from throat cancer.[1]


  1. American Rocket Pioneer

External links