Stuntman taking rocket trip to prove Earth is flat

A US limo driver has designed a rocket that'll launch him hundreds of metres into the air in an effort to prove, once and for all, that the Earth is flat.

'Mad' Mike Hughes, 61, has been building a homemade rocket in his garage over the past few years and hopes to launch it over the Californian town of Amboy on Saturday (local time).

The rocket, which has cost Mr Hughes US$20,000 (NZ$29,300) to make, is powered by steam and is projected to travel at more than 800km/h. The flight requires 70 gallons of water.

This weekend's flight is a test ahead of another that he expects will take him high enough to see that the world is completely flat, and prove his theory that the Earth is just a mass of land surrounded by large walls of ice.

"It's scary as hell, but none of us are getting out of this world alive," the former stuntsman told AP of the experience.

"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."

But it doesn't stop there for Mr Hughes - after he proves the Earth is completely horizontal, he wants to pioneer flat-Earth space travel.

He has also expressed interest in running for Governor of California, and expects his flat Earth discovery to give him a genuine shot at the state's top job.

Mr Hughes' flight this weekend will be broadcast live on his website.