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The Space Age
    2008-09-22 15:59:30    CRIENGLISH.com

Space Exploration Space exploration is our human response to curiosity about Earth, the moon, the planets, the sun and other stars, and the galaxies. Piloted and unpiloted space vehicles venture far beyond the boundaries of Earth to collect valuable information about the universe. Human beings have visited the moon and have lived in space stations for long periods. Space exploration helps us see Earth in its true relation with the rest of the universe. Such exploration could reveal how the sun, the planets, and the stars were formed and whether life exists beyond our own world.


The space age began on Oct. 4, 1957. On that day, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik (later referred to as Sputnik 1), the first artificial satellite to orbit Earth. The first piloted space flight was made on April 12, 1961, when Yuri A. Gagarin, a Soviet cosmonaut, orbited Earth in the spaceship Vostok (later called Vostok 1).


Source: NASA


Oct 4, 1957

Soviet Union Launches Sputnik, the world's first artificial earth satellite.


Nov 3, 1957

Laika, the first mammal to orbit earth, died hours into its mission in Sputnik 2.


Feb 1, 1958

United States launches Explorer 1, which discovers the Van Allen radiation belts.


Apr 5, 1958

NASA is established to conduct space activities.


Aug 17, 1958

Pioneer satellites study cosmic radiation, solar wind, and electromagnetism.


Apr 9, 1959

The Mercury Seven are introduced.


Oct 7, 1959

Luna 3 sends back the first images of the far side of the Moon.


Oct 21, 1959

Werner von Braun, famed German engineer, arrives at NASA.


Aug 12, 1960

The Echo 1 satellite reflects radio waves back to earth.


Jan 31, 1961

Ham becomes the first chimp in Space.




Ham fitted into a special biopack couch prior to flight. [File Photo: wikipedia]

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Chinese Taikonaut Zhai Zhigang completed China's first spacewalk on September 27.
China has chosen Zhai Zhigang, Liu Boming and Jing Haipeng to carry out its 3rd manned space mission.
Chinese engineers have made 36 technical improvements to the new rocket.
China launched a new space tracking ship in April to serve the Shenzhou VII spacewalk mission.