Rocket man! What goes up must come down

44 year old Brian Walker from the US is planning on being the first private human being to go to space in a home-built rocket. Apparently he has wanted to build his own rocket since he was 8, and wants to blast off next year.

The toy inventor is spending a quarter-million dollars of his own money to launch himself to a planned peak of about 30 miles, about half-way to what scientists consider “space”. Jet Propulsion Laboratory engineer Robert Frisbee says Walker's plan should work “in theory,” though “it'll be a wild ride.”

Walker says his ambition is limited enough to succeed. “I'm not going orbital. I'm not going to the moon,” he said. “I'm only carrying so much fuel. I can only go so high, and when I run out of fuel, I'll come back down.”