How does the Satellite get into space? Usually, a satellite is brought into space by a rocket. But how does the rocket get there? Rockets are filled with fuel and oxygen, which burn very fast, propelling the rocket away from Earth. You can try your own little rocket experiment with a balloon. Blow up a balloon with air, and then let it go. All of the air escapes from the balloon, and it flies away! Like the balloon, a rocket will fall down to Earth when it runs out of fuel. Scientists are sure to launch rockets where they will fall harmlessly back into the ocean. Because rockets always fall back to Earth, they are used only for launching space craft and probes, and not for space travel.
Rockets are very important for the launching of Space Shuttles. Two rocket boosters and a huge fuel tank propell the shuttle 200 miles above Earth. The boosters and fuel tank will fall back to Earth soon after launch, but the shuttle will stay in space until the flight crew decides to bring it back to the ground.
Landing the Space Shuttle is tricky. First the shuttle has to slow down. The astronauts turn the shuttle around and fire its engines in the opposite direction, then turn the shuttle around again so it is facing forward. As the shuttle slows down, gravity pulls it back towards the Earth. The shape of the Space Shuttle makes it glide gently and land on the runway almost like an airplane.
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