The Ranger Program Essay

1500 Words 6 Pages
“One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” This quote by Neil Armstrong marked the end of the Space Race. The space race was a competition between the United States and the Soviet Union to see who could land a man on the moon first. It originally began as an arms race to build destructive missiles. But over the years, the main objective has changed. Even though the competition lasted a little more than a decade, it led to major contributions to the exploration of space.
After World War II came to an end, the United States and the Soviet Union emerged as superpowers. The two countries began to compete against each other because of their different ideals, especially their views on democracy and communism. There was a lot of political
…show more content…
The first probe, Luna 1, was sent to the moon on January 2, but missed its target. In September of the same year, Luna II successfully landed on the moon, while taking several pictures and collecting a lot of valuable data. In spite of all their setbacks, the United States established the Ranger programs in 1959. The Ranger program’s objective was to send spacecrafts to the moon. It took seven attempts for NASA to achieve their goal. Rangers 1 and 2 never made it off the ground because they both exploded right after they were launched. Rangers 3 and 4 survived the launch, but missed the moon. Ranger 5 ran out of fuel before reaching the moon. Ranger 7 finally landed on the moon in …show more content…
Yuri Gagarin was launched into space on April 12, 1961 in a spacecraft called Vostok 1. He made a complete orbit around the Earth in 108 minutes before coming back down. After the Soviet Union’s major success with sending a human into space, President John F. Kennedy announced that the United States would send a man to the moon by the year 1970, marking the end of the space race.(Bello, Francis (1959). "The Early Space Age") During the competition against each other, the United States and the Soviet Union were secretly spying on each other, taking advantage of the satellites they put in orbit to take pictures of their projects. Corona, a U.S. satellite, took over 800,000 pictures of the Soviet Union from 1960 to 1972.
Right after its creation, NASA developed the mercury project. The project’s main objective was to send the first American into space. NASA selected a small group of people from the Navy, Air Force, and the Marines as candidates to send into space. NASA eventually chose Alan Shepard to be their main candidate and on May 5, 1961, he became the first American to be in space. Shepard traveled in a spacecraft called Mercury-Redstone 3, which he later renamed it to Freedom 7. When he returned from the mission, he was considered to be a national hero and was awarded the NASA Distinguished Service Medal by John F.

Related Documents