Sputnik 1 Facts
The Sputnik Program, more commonly known as "companion", is known to be a group of numerous robotic spacecraft operations launched by the Soviet Union. Sputnik 1, the first of these, is the first known human made object to enter the space. Sputnik 1 was launched into the space on October 4, 1957. The launch laid bare the expediency of the usage of artificial sites for the exploration of upper atmosphere.
The word "sputnik" is said to have Russian origin with the literal meaning "co-traveler", "satellite", or "travelling companion". Sputnik 1, when launched, featured a diameter measuring 58cm (23") and a weight of 83.6 kg (183 lb.). It took about 96 minutes to complete each of the 1440 elliptical orbits.
The launch of Sputnik 1 had surprised the US as this launch was coupled with the magnificent failure of the USA"s first two attempts for the launch of Project Vanguard. The launch of Sputnik 1 had had a very positive impact in the space research world. Firstly, it led to the up come of Advanced Research Projects Agency, DARPA, and NASA. Besides, it had also inspired various youngsters to form a generation of engineers and scientists. Moreover, the launch of Sputnik 1 also inspired Herb Caen, a U.S. writer to lay claim to the term "beatnik" in the San Francisco Chronicle about the Beat Generation.
To conclude with, it would not be wrong to say that Sputnik 1 has proved to be not only a landmark in human space flight but has also been the inaugurating achievement in the "Space Race". Besides, it has also given birth to a cohort of scientists and engineers.