National Aeronautics and Space Administration Logo
Follow this link to skip to the main content NASA Banner
Solar System Exploration
Facebook Twitter YouTube Facebook Twitter YouTube Flickr iTunes
Follow Us
Sputnik 1
Sputnik 1 (click to enlarge)

Sputnik 1
Date: 4 Oct 1957

The Sputnik 1 (PS-1) satellite is shown here on a rigging truck in the assembly shop in the fall of 1957 as a technician puts finishing touches on it.

When the development of the first advanced scientific satellite, Object D, proved to be more difficult than expected, the Soviets decided to launch a simpler, smaller satellite. PS-1, or Sputnik 1, began development in November 1956.

On 4 October 1957, Sputnik 1 successfully launched and entered Earth's orbit. Sputnik shocked the world, giving the USSR the distinction of putting the first human-made object into space and putting the United States a step behind in the space race.

Credit: NASA

Awards and Recognition   Solar System Exploration Roadmap   Contact Us   Site Map   Print This Page
NASA Official: Kristen Erickson
Advisory: Dr. James Green, Director of Planetary Science
Outreach Manager: Alice Wessen
Curator/Editor: Phil Davis
Science Writers: Courtney O'Connor and Bill Dunford
Producer: Greg Baerg
Webmaster: David Martin
> NASA Science Mission Directorate
> Budgets, Strategic Plans and Accountability Reports
> Equal Employment Opportunity Data
   Posted Pursuant to the No Fear Act
> Information-Dissemination Policies and Inventories
> Freedom of Information Act
> Privacy Policy & Important Notices
> Inspector General Hotline
> Office of the Inspector General
> NASA Communications Policy
> NASA Advisory Council
> Open Government at NASA
Last Updated: 19 Apr 2013