Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"The first thing that's wrong with being a science-fiction writer today is that the present has caught up with the future and surpassed it."
- Peter Watts

Teakettle  
  A standard rocket (uses hydrogen as a booster to leave the atmosphere).  

Heinlein used this term because he saw all spaceships being powered by atomic energy; the atomic pile would heat water or some other reaction matter.

All I know about spaceships is that the ones that operate from the surface of a planet are true rockets but the voyageurs call them "teakettles" because of the steam jet of water or hydrogen they boost with.
From Double Star, by Robert Heinlein.
Published by Doubleday in 1956
Additional resources -

One of the writing "tricks" that Heinlein uses to great effect in his stories is to use the common vocabulary of my grandparents (like "teakettle") to describe the common elements of the future. It lends a sense of familiarity and unconscious authority to the speaker.

The French Canadian word voyageur is also a nice choice to describe men who lived and worked in space. It neatly designates them as explorers and Americans, as well as spacemen, since the word was originally used to describe guides or traders in early North America.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Double Star
  More Ideas and Technology by Robert Heinlein
  Tech news articles related to Double Star
  Tech news articles related to works by Robert Heinlein

Articles related to Spacecraft
Dream Of Building Your Own Rocket?
Used Dragon Cargo Spacecraft Will Fly Again
Laser-Powered Spacecraft To Explore The Solar System
SKYLON Space Plane Gets Boost

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

Ontario Starts Guaranteed Minimum Income
'Earned by just being born.'

Is There Life In Outer Space? Will We Recognize It?
'The antennae of the Life Detector atop the OP swept back and forth...'

Space Traumapod For Surgery In Spacecraft
' It was a ... coffin, form-fitted to Nessus himself...'

Tesla Augmented Reality Hypercard
'The hypercard is an avatar of sorts.'

A Space Ship On My Back
''Darn clever, these suits,' he murmured.'

Biomind AI Doctor Mops Floor With Human Doctors
'My aim was just not to lose by too much.' - Human Physician participant.

Las Vegas Humans Ready To Strike Over Robots
'A worker replaced by a nubot... had to be compensated.'

You'll Regrow That Limb, One Day
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to regrow his lost fingers.'

Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.