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A daredevil has died after his homemade rocket was involved in a crash in America.
'Mad' Mike Hughes had planned to launch the rocket in an attempt to prove that the Earth is flat, as per his beliefs. However, the 64-year-old crash-landed his steam-powered rocket shortly after take-off in the Californian desert over the weekend.
The Science Channel has been following Mr Hughes' journey to the skies and was preparing to release a series about him called Homemade Astronauts.
The network confirmed Hughes had sadly died in the crash near Barstow, saying in a statement on Twitter: "Our thoughts & prayers go out to his family & friends during this difficult time.
"It was always his dream to do this launch & Science Channel was there to chronicle his journey."
Footage of the launch, posted on social media, showed Hughes' rocket ascending into the air before falling to the ground seconds later.
San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner public information officer Cindy Bachman added: "A man was pronounced deceased after the rocket crashed in the open desert during a rocket launch event.
"Medical aid was staged for the launch and was on scene immediately."
Michael 'Mad Mike' Hughes tragically passed away today during an attempt to launch his homemade rocket. Our thoughts & prayers go out to his family & friends during this difficult time. It was always his dream to do this launch & Science Channel was there to chronicle his journey pic.twitter.com/GxwjpVf2md
- Science Channel (@ScienceChannel) February 23, 2020
Hughes previously made headlines two years ago after launching himself around 1,875ft into the skies, reaching an estimated speed of 560km/h before activating his parachute during the stunt.
He said at the time: "I'm tired of people saying I chickened out and didn't build a rocket. I'm tired of that stuff. I manned up and did it.
"Am I glad I did it? Yeah. I guess. I'll feel it in the morning. I won't be able to get out of bed. At least I can go home and have dinner and see my cats tonight."
Hughes has been testing his rocket for years, however he had to pull the pin on one particular launch when authorities told him he didn't have the proper permission.
Although the owner of Amboy, the ghost town in the Mojave desert where Mr Hughes was going to launch from, had okayed his mission, federal authorities contacted him to say otherwise.
He posted a video onto social media to 'set the record straight' after many criticised him for not launching on the announced date.
"I don't believe in science," Hughes told AP in 2017. "I know about aerodynamics and fluid dynamics and how things move through the air, about the certain size of rocket nozzles and thrust. But that's not science, that's just a formula. There's no difference between science and science fiction.
"If you're not scared to death, you're an idiot. It's scary as hell, but none of us are getting out of this world alive.
"I like to do extraordinary things that no one else can do, and no one in the history of mankind has designed, built, and launched himself in his own rocket."
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