Sixty years ago, Sputnik became the first satellite in space and changed the world forever. Launched by the Soviet Union on Oct. 4, 1957, this shiny orb kick-started the space race, and opened up the heavens for mankind to explore.
To mark the occasion, ESA Euronews arranged access to the private museum of RSC Energia, the Russian state company that actually built the world’s first satellite, officially called Sputnik-1. Hanging in this Moscow treasure trove of pioneering space probes is one of the original Sputnik flight spares, built in 1957. Compact, at just over 80 kilogrammes, its polished surfaces and distinctive antennae are now unmistakable – look at this satellite, and the first word in your mind is ‘Sputnik’.