Building up from this question, let's say that we have a lighter situation where:
- The Earth has lost its magnetic field
- Solar winds are interacting with the atmosphere
- Molecules are split up due to this situation, and hydrogen has left to space escaping the gravity well, causing the loss of water over time
- Still, oxygen is still in atmosphere, maybe leaking a little bit over time, but human survival is guaranteed for now (although, generally speaking, the population is doomed, with less oxygen in the air and less water to drink)
In this ok-but-not-so-great situation, I am looking for scientific or pseudo-scientific explanations for saying that
- NASA rockets and spacecrafts that used to fly in normal situation (normal atmosphere, normal magnetic field, solar winds at bay etc) do not fly correctly anymore
- NASA scientists can try to keep up, to modify their rockets in a new quest to conquer space
- if they do not do it fast enough, the overall situation changes again (less water, less hydrogen, more gases escaping the gravity well etc) and they have to redo their math from scratch, in this continuous modifications to their spacecrafts and Earth laws understanding
Which could be a plausible (even if not super-sound) explanation to support this narrative?
Note. I am fine even with solutions that suppose this degrading process of the planet and its atmosphere (which would take millions of years to undergo) is somehow compressed in a shorter timespan.