Azara Blog: Fifty years after Sputnik

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Date published: 2007/10/04

The BBC says:

Ceremonies have been held in Russia to mark the 50th anniversary of the start of the space age - the launch of the first satellite, Sputnik.

Former Soviet cosmonauts, engineers and officials took part in several events recalling what is considered one of the most significant moments in history.

The launch was a propaganda coup for the Soviet Union during the Cold War and began the space race with the US.
...
The Sputnik satellite, weighing 83kg (183lb) and only twice the size of a football, could be seen with the naked eye as it circled the Earth for 22 days. It emitted a signal that could be heard on a household radio.
...
Fifty years after Sputnik's launch, more than 800 satellites now orbit the Earth, used for communications, surveillance and navigation.

1957 was as an important a historical date for the world as was 1492. It has been amazing how low key the anniversary has been treated in the British media. If it were America that had launched the first satellite you can guarantee there would have been tonnes of coverage.

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