a (small) rocket used to carry a message
Instead of the irregular lump of cosmic rubbish he expected, he found himself gazing at a dented, stellium cylinder. ‘A message rocket,’ he muttered. ‘Now what the —?’ Bending down, he rolled it over and felt for the catch which would slide the message compartment cover aside.
A little over a year ago, Solar Arbitrary Time, a message rocket dropped into the receiving chute at the Interworld Space Authority headquarters on Mars.
In firing a torpedo you want an impact at the end of the run, a big smash. A message rocket would have to arrive in shape to deliver the message, so velocity would have to be considered.
He asked, somewhat stupidly, ‘Wasn’t that a message rocket, Mr. Thorn?’ ‘We have occasion to send messages from time to time.’
I wouldn’t waste any time putting that message rocket into orbit, Kurt. Every minute is going to be precious from now on.
He recorded on a chip the size of a flyspeck and loaded it into a tiny transmitter and fired it off parcel post in a five-stage, high-gee message rocket.
John Wyndham (writing as "John Beynon Harris") in Wonder Stories Quarterly
Last modified 2021-08-24 14:11:44
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.