Brian WalkerInventor / Adventurer
Born: 30 May 1956
Birthplace: Portland, Oregon
Best known as: The "Rocket Guy"
Brian Walker announced in 2000 that he was building his own manned rocket that he hoped would blast him into the upper atmosphere. Walker is an inventor whose successful toy designs include the Air Bazooka, the Celestial Seeker, and the Alien Orbiter. Walker called his planned rocket Project R.U.S.H., an acronym for "rapid up super high." The rocket was not intended to send him into orbit but to boost him over 30 miles above the Earth. The launch, originally planned for 2001, was delayed several times and never came to fruition. In 2006, Wired magazine published a story saying that Walker had altered his plans and intended to use a giant crossbow to help launch a jet-powered craft nearly 20 miles into the atmosphere. Walker's official site has since gone offline and he has retreated from the public eye.
Extra credit: For another contemporary inventor, see Dean Kamen. American inventors of the past nclude Thomas Edison and George Washington Carver. See also our profiles of space pioneers Neil Armstrong and Ham the Chimp.
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