Yesterday I got fascinated by the camera recordings on the Atlantis Space Shuttle. I have two questions which I cannot give an answer. Maybe some of you may help. 1) Lift off: we can assume the big ship has its center of mass in the geometrical center. The force if applied in the lower end (at the nozzles). This is a really unstable way to move something. In the first seconds of the lift off the wings cannot have any stabilizing effect, I think. Why doesn't the thing fall over ? 2) Back into the atmosphere. Meteorites become balls of fire when they fall into the atmosphere. Why doesn't the same happen to the boosters ?