Queen's University

Sputnik celebrates 55th anniversary: Queen's University expert

2012-10-11

Queen’s University astronomy expert David Hanes is available to comment on the 55th anniversary of Sputnik 1. On October 4, 1957 the Soviet Union successfully launched the world’s first artificial satellite that was about the size of a beach ball. This launch marked the start of the U.S./USSR space race.

“We should remember that the third player in the race to launch artificial satellites was Canada,” says Dr. Hanes, head of the Department of Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy and a member of the Queen’s University Astronomy Research Group. “It’s worth noting that artificial satellites are ubiquitous in day-to-day life, providing GPS, remote sensing, weather system monitoring, intercontinental communications, etc.  In fact there are many tens of thousands of satellites now in Earth orbit.”

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