This web page contains facts about the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. It’s the perfect resource for anyone of any age looking to learn about the space race. Below are the latest and most accurate facts about the space race. Along with facts, we list notable accomplishments that were achieved by the USA and USSR.
The space race facts below will help you under what the space race was, notable first to achieve events, why the space race was fought and what the ultimate outcome of the space race was. We hope the below facts about the space race are help and making researching this period fun, while opening your imagination into space.
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13 Space Race Facts for Kids
- The space race was a competition between the United States (US) and the Soviet Union (USSR).
- The competition between the United States and the Soviet Union was to be the first to successfully complete specific spaceflight capabilities.
- Many historians believe the space race began on August 2nd, 1995. The USSR declared it would launch an artificial satellite in the near future, which was a response to the US who intended to do the same.
- The space race originated from the ballistic missile arms race between both nations. The technology that came out of ballistic missile development and spaceflight development was helpful to one another.
- Historians disagree when the space race officially ended. Some think after the US Apollo 11 moon landing, while others think it was with the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Generally, everyone agree on is the United States technically won the space race by putting the first human on the moon.
- On October 4th, 1957, the Soviet Union spacecraft Sputnik 1 was the first artificial satellite and the first object to send a signal from space.
- On November 3rd, 1957, the Soviet Union spacecraft Sputnik 2 was the first time a living animal was put into space. It was a dog named Laika.
- On December 18, 1958, the United States put the first communications satellite into space.
- On January 2nd, 1959, the Soviet Union spacecraft Luna 1 was the first object to visit the moon.
- On August 19th, 1960, the Soviet Union spacecraft Sputnik 5 was the first time a living animal was put into space and returned to Earth alive. It was two dogs named Belka and Strelka.
- On April 12, 1961, the Soviet Union spacecraft Vostok 1 took Yuri Gagarin, the first human into space.
- On May 19th, 1961, the Soviet Union spacecraft Venera 1 was the first to flyby a planet, which was Venus.
- On July 20th, 1969, the United States Apollo 11 mission was the first time humans set foot on the moon and any other solar system body besides Earth.
Space Race Pictures
Additional Resources for Space Race Research
- The Space Race – Learn about the United States-Soviet space race on the Smithsonian website.
- Timeline of the Space Race – A timeline showing major events and accomplishments during the space race.
- Space Race History – Read about the historic space race between the United States and the Soviet Union.