Share
 

Ask an Explainer

Q:

How long can a rocket last in space?

A:

A rocket can keep flying forever in space, even when it runs out of fuel. 

In space, there is no air to slow things down by creating drag. This means that we're following Newton's first law. Once the rocket leaves Earth's atmosphere, the only force acting upon it is the force of thrust from its engines. When you turn them off, the rocket will keep moving in the same direction, at the same velocity, until something else bumps into it.

Submit a Question