Well, I have a couple questions. StraightDope has never let me down, so hopefully a few people can help me out. I’m having poker night tonight at my house, and these questions were brought up previously and no one really knew the answer.
Ok, First question. One of newton’s laws says something like every action has a reaction (I know it’s not exactly that). So, with that said, when we launch something into space, the rocket puts a push on the earth. So if all our space shuttles are launched at the Cape, do they have to worry about launching at different times so the force on the earth doesn’t accumulate and push us out of our normal orbit, even by a few millimeters? I know it’s not that big of a force, but let’s say that ALL the world’s rockets were launched from that same spot. Would that do anything?
Ok, second question. You’re in a helicopter, and you have 4 hours of fuel. I take off from my yard and hover, never moving. Let’s say that the wind isn’t there, and heck, we can even say we’re inside a dome football stadium at the 50 yard line. So I’m hovering, never moving the controls, and the helicoper never moves right or left. With the earth rotating, when I land, shouldn’t I be somewhere other than where I started? The earth rotates, I stay where I am, and I would think that I would come down somewhere else, but common sense tells me that’s not the case.
Well, anyways, can anyone shed some light?