- Year of Death: Roughly 2000 BCE
- Experiment: Testing Rocket Chair
- Cause of Death: Rocket Explosion
Wan Hu is known by history as the “world’s first astronaut.” While Hu was not a notable inventor, the Chinese man did become a legendary figure in scientific history. His invention is the stuff of legend because of its simplicity because it makes sense to try even though we now know it’s a terrible idea. This experiment has been replicated by shows like Mythbusters and even copied for the movie Kung Fu Panda.
Essentially, Wan Hu took part in one of history’s first killer science experiments when he came up with the Rocket Chair. The idea was that he felt rockets, which were relatively new in his day, could launch him into space. Of course, he did not really think through oxygen needs nor did he realize how long the rockets he used would last. He managed to create a sustainable chair that could withstand weight and heat. Then strapped exactly 47 rockets to it. While it is unknown if he flew much or at all, the rockets exploded on him. The chair nor Wu were ever seen again, making many assume he blew himself up.