Sputnik was launched on October 4, 1957.
Sputnik’s launch led to the Space Race between the US and Russia. This made the tensions made by the Cold War even worse, as many Americans believed that Russia could now launch ballistic missiles carrying nuclear weapons because of this newfound science.
On January 31, 1958, the US launched Explorer 1, which discovered the magnetic radiation belts around Earth. Soon after, NASA was created.
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