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Updated 30 Aug 2012


On October 4th, 1957, the day that AVRO rolled out RL201, the Russians launched a satellite, called Sputnik.

With Sputnik sending out its beeps, as it orbited the Earth, it became the number one news story, shadowing AVRO's rollout of the Arrow. Sputnik also changed the American/Canadian political/military outlook towards missiles to defend against attack from missiles and space weapons.

Sputnik 1  was about the size of a basketball, weighed only 183 pounds, and took about 98 minutes to orbit the Earth on its elliptical path. Sputnik 1 was the world's first artificial satellite in that it was the first human-made object to orbit the Earth.

Sputnik Stamp 1957 - U.S.S.R.

Pravada's "Announcement of the First Satellite"To external webpage icon, October 5, 1957 (NASA)

Audio of Sputnik's telemetryTo external webpage icon (NASA) (.wav file)

NASA's Sputnik and The Dawn of the Space AgeTo external webpage icon

Micheal Wrights's Sputnik: First Artificial Satellite. Commemorating the 40th anniversary of the beginning of the Space Age.To external webpage icon

Soviet Scientists Describe the First SputnikTo external webpage icon

Sputnik's LegacyTo external webpage icon

PBS's Online Focus "The Sputnik Effect: The Space Race Revisited"To external webpage icon, Newshour transcript, 2 October, 1997. RealAudio versionTo external webpage icon.
A background report on the Sputnik Launch.To external webpage icon

The Eisenhower Archives has an extensive list of documents available online "Sputnik and the Space Race"To external webpage icon

Noel Casados's Sputnik "Fellow Traveler" from 40 years ago.To external webpage icon

NSSDC Master Catalog Spacecraft - Sputnik 1To external webpage icon

Roy Welch, W0SL (then W5SLL in 57), recorded Sputnik's signal in Dallas Texas, using a Military surplus AN/FRR3A HF RTTY receiver. The frequency was 20.007 MHz, very close to WWV's 20.000 MHz. WWV shut down their transmitters during some passes on 7 October, 1957, during which Roy recorded the signals. Audio clips are in WAV or RealAudio formats. AMSAT's First Satellite's Audio clipsTo external webpage icon

Sputnik HistoryTo external webpage icon

Sputnik 40 or RS-17To external webpage icon: A 1/3 sized replica of Sputnik launched from space station MIR, November 1997, to celebrate the 40th birthday of Sputnik. Sputnik 40 had a 200 mW beacon on 145.812 MHz. There is audio of the beacon and a video of the launch on the webpage.

Sputnik 41 or RS-18To external webpage icon: A 1/3 sized replica of Sputnik hand launched from space station MIR, November 1998. Sputnik 41 had a 200 mW transmitter on 145.812 MHz. Two messages in three languages, including Sputnik 1's "beep-beep". There is audio of the beacons on the webpage. The batteries were expected to last one month.

Space.com's Sputnik 1: The Satellite That Started It AllTo external webpage icon by Leonard David, 4 October, 2002.

Wall Street History - Sputnik, 1957To external webpage icon, by Brian Trumbore

Science Friday: Sputnik: Forty years after the little beeping ballTo external webpage icon. 3 October, 1997. Includes the program in RealAudio.

US Army Signal Research and Development Laboratory track Sputnik from Camp EvansTo external webpage icon

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