It began in the 1950's, soon after the beginning of the Cold War. The United States was working on its first earth-orbiting satellite. At the time we didn't know it, but the Soviet Union was also.
We found out on October 4, 1957, that the Soviet Union launched its first satellite, Sputnik I into space. An A-1 rocket boosted Sputnik into space from its base in the Soviet republic of Kazakhstan. Its first orbit of the Earth took about 95 minutes traveling at a speed of 18,000 miles per hour. Sputnik stayed in space for 57 days.
On October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union successfully launched Sputnik I. The world's first artificial satellite was about the size of a beach ball(58 cm.or 22.8 inches in diameter), weighed only 83.6 kg. or 183.9 pounds, and took about 98 minutes to orbit the Earth. Sputnik was what started the U.S. Space Race.
U.S. feared that the Soviets' ability to launch satellites might be a chance for them to launch missiles that could carry nuclear weapons from Europe to the U.S.
Then the Soviets on November 3, Sputnik II was launched, including a dog named Laika.
On January 31, 1958, the United States successfully launched Explorer.
This satellite discovered the magnetic radiation belts around the Earth.
Explorer I was named after principal investigator James Van Allen.
Was launched on September 12, 1959. Luna 2 was the second of a series of spacecraft launched in the direction of the Moon . There were twenty-four series of Luna but Luna 2 was the most important.
Yuri Gagarin was born in Moscow, Russia on March 9, 1934.
Yuri joined the Soviet Air Force in 1955
In 1959, he was training to become a cosmonaut
On April 12, 1961 Yuri Gagarin was the first human to orbit the Earth. The name of his spacecraft was Vostok 1 . Vostok 1 circled Earth at the speed of 27,400 kilometers per hour.
The flight lasted 108 minutes , and he didn’t land in the spacecraft he ejected on a parachute.
He died on March 27, 1968
Alan Shepard Jr.
Born November 18, 1923, in East Derry, New Hampshire
In January, 1961 Shepard was chosen for the first American manned mission into Space.
On May 5,1961, Shepard piloted the Freedom 7 mission and became the second person, and the first American to travel into space. before the launch, Shepard stated "Please, dear God, don't let me mess up.” This is known as the "Shepard's Prayer."
Unlike Yuri Gagarin flight, Shepard remained in control of his craft at all times.
Alan died on July 21, 1998
John Glenn Jr.
He was born July 18, 1921 in Cambridge, Ohio. He then married the former Anna Margaret Castor.
He attended Muskingum College in New Concord and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering.
Glenn was assigned to the NASA Space Task Group at Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia on April 1959 after his selection as a Project Mercury Astronaut.
Glenn flew on Mercury-6 in February 20, 1962 and STS-95 in October 29 to November 7, 1998 and spent over 218 hours in space.
Tereshkova was born in Bolshoye Maslennikovo on March 6, 1937.
Four women were selected to be trained for a special woman-in-space program. Out of the four women selected, Valentina Tereshkova was the only one to complete a space mission.
Tereshkova was launched on the Vostok 6 on June 16, 1963 and became the first woman to fly in space. During the 70.8 hour flight, Vostok 6 made 48 orbits of Earth
Apollo 8 was the Apollo space program’s second successful manned mission. It was also the first manned launch of the Saturn V rocket.
Its crew became the first humans to orbit the moon.
Apollo 8 was launched on December 21, 1968 and landed December 27, 1968.
MAN ON THE MOON!!!
Neil Alden Armstrong is the first human to have step foot on the moon!!!
Armstrong was born on August 5,1930 in Wapakoneta, Ohio. His first space flight occurred in 1966 aboard Gemini 8. In July of 1969, Neil Armstrong was the commander of Apollo 11 , America's first attempt to land a manned vehicle on the Moon.
On July 20, 1969 Commander Armstrong and astronaut Edwin Aldrin successfully touched down on the Moon surface.
PRIMARY SOURCE Picture of Moon taken by Apollo 8
MAP Map of where Sputnik1 was launched
TIMELINE The United States launches Apollo 8, the first manned space mission to orbit the moon. 1968 The first woman in space is Soviet cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova. 1963 John Glenn Jr. becomes the first American astronaut to orbit the Earth. 1962 Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin becomes the first person to orbit the Earth. Alan Shepard Jr. becomes the first American astronaut in space. 1961 The Soviet Union launches Luna 2. This is the first space probe to hit the moon. 1959 The United States launches its first satellite, Explorer I. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is formed in the United States. NASA is the federal agency devoted to exploring space. 1958 The Soviet Union launches Sputnik, the first artificial Earth satellite. "Sputnik" is the Russian word for "Traveler." 1957 EVENT DATE
TIMELINE CONT. U.S. astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins make it to the moon. Armstrong is the first man to walk on the moon and was followed by Buzz Aldrin. 1969 EVENT DATE