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“It will free man from the remaining chains, the chains of gravity which still tie him to his planet.” —Wernher von Braun The combustion reaction of hydrogen and oxygen is used to produce the explosive energy needed to power the space shuttle. The reaction is also being engineered to serve as a source of continuous energy for fuel cells in electric vehicles. What factors determine the explosiveness of the reaction of hydrogen with oxygen? In this lab, we will generate microscale quantities of hydrogen and oxygen and test their explosive nature, first separately, then in mixtures of various proportions. The goal—to find the most “powerful” gas mixture and use it to launch a rocket across the room!