radiation is of considerable importance to astronauts and cosmonauts: it is avoided so that radiation doses can be limited to acceptable levels and it partly determines the altitude of orbiting manned space- craft.
FLIGHT OF YURI G G RIN, THE FIRST HUM N BEING IN SP CE
Fig. 6. Sputnik 1, the first artificial satellite. Its total weight was just over 80 kg (from http://www.fht-esslingen.de/telehistory/sputnik. html).
to map the radiation belts in the atmosphere, but the experiment was unsuccessful because of the failure of a tape recorder. In fact, Sputnik 3 detected high levels of radiation, but it was not possible to say whether these were local or distributed in a belt around the Earth. It was left to the United States satellite, Explorer 1, with only one-sixth the payload weight of Sputnik 2 to discover the Van Allen radi- ation belt as it is now called. This intense region of
The large amount of information now available about Sergei Korolev makes it clear that, from the outset, his main objective was to launch a human being into space and, if possible, have him or her reach the Moon or even Mars. Korolev was a remarkable vision- ary! However, in practice, the Soviet space program was dominated by the military who recognized its importance for delivering nuclear weapons. Sergei Khrushchev (son of Nikita Khrushchev) tells the story that Korolev met Premier Khrushchev and told him that he wanted to launch the first artificial satellite (Sputnik 1). “What’s that?” asked the Premier, and “will it interfere with the military program?” On hear- ing Korolev say that it would not, he gave the assent. However, the documentaries make it clear that there was considerable tension between Korolev and the military when he successfully pursued his manned space program.
Actually, it was obvious to outsiders that when Ko- rolev launched Laika and then Sputnik 3 with its 1.3-ton payload, he was leading up to the launching of
Fig. 7. The payload of Sputnik 2, which included the dog Laika, the first living being in space. The compartment for the dog is below a replica of Sputnik 1 (from Ref. 1).
J Appl Physiol • VOL 91 • OCTOBER 2001 • www.jap.org
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