Rocket launches are strategic events that require careful planning before they are executed. There is math involved in calculating the trajectory, how much fuel is needed and when to separate the different stages. Stages that separate in the earth’s atmosphere like the side-boosters fall back to earth after detachment. Therefore, it is important to make sure that they do not land in a populated area. This is the reason why launchpads are located in places which are not surrounded by settlements.
Some launchpads are located near or surrounded by bodies of water, while for others this might not be the case. Other launchpads are located in areas which are not near water at all, emphasizing the fact that a launchpad can be located anywhere. The main criteria for choosing a launch site is safety of the people. Just in case a rocket fails midair, it can fall back to the earth without injuring anybody. Falling debris from rockets is also considered to make sure no accidents occur when the parts fall.
The trajectory of a rocket has a distinct tendency to go towards the east direction. Under rocket science, it was chosen as an efficient way of launching a rocket into space. It also increases the time a rocket has, to achieve escape velocity which is about 8 km per second. Any speed below escape velocity means a rocket won’t be able to leave Earth’s atmosphere. Forests should not be near a launchpad or east of it because falling debris can be flammable. To prevent forest fires, the location of a launchpad is chosen in areas void of forests.
One reason why water bodies near launch sites might be favorable is for retrieving reusable parts from a rocket. If they fall to the ground, more than likely they will be destroyed. So to make the retrieval process easier, it would be convenient to use a water body. A water body will not only provide convenience in retrieval, but will ensure minimal damage to those reusable parts.
Improvements in technology have enabled humans to explore space in different ways. Rockets have revolutionized space travel by being the most important vehicle to reach outer space. To reach there, however, requires planning in case of emergencies. Ensuring that people are safe during the launch of a rocket, it is of paramount importance that places near launch sites are clear of any human settlement or forests. To be able to retrieve usable parts means controlling how and where they land. This is why most launch sites are near the sea to ensure safety of retrieval.