Goals: Luna 2, originally named Second Cosmic Rocket, was the sixth Soviet attempt to send a probe crashing into the Moon - and the first success. The spacecraft also carried sensors to study interplanetary space and sodium gas to enable Earthbound observers to follow its progress.
Accomplishments: Luna 2 was the first object of human origin to make contact with another celestial body. The spacecraft scattered spherical emblems of the Soviet Union on the lunar surface. The spacecraft's sensors found no evidence of a lunar magnetic field or radiation belt.