Russia Launches Earth Satellite
180lb. Sphere Travelling at Height of 560 Miles
Moscow radio announced last night that Russia yesterday launched an earth
satellite. The announcement was made in an English-language broadcast.
The Tass agency said the satellite was now looping the earth 560 miles up once
every 95 minutes. It was a 180lb. sphere, about 23in. in diameter, and it could
be observed in the rays of the rising and setting sun with ordinary binoculars.
It had been launched from a carrier rocket.
It was travelling its course on an elliptical trajectory at about 17,000 miles
an hour. Its orbit was inclined at an angle of 65deg. to the equatorial plane.
Its wireless signals could be received by "a broad range of amateurs."
The announcement said calculations had shown that because of the tremendous
velocity of the satellite, it would burn up on reaching the denser layers of the
atmosphere at the end of its existence. Scientific stations at various points in
Russia were conducting observations.
The launching of the satellite was said to be part of the programme of
international geophysical research. The first plans to launch earth satellites
were announced in July, 1955, by the United States. In July of this year
authoritative sources in Washington were quoted as saying that small satellites
would be launched in November to test the full satellite project.