Something really cool on Propeller yesterday, submitted by Jordan. This is a BBC News artcile that gives the reader great insight into how much technology has really changed in the past 60 years. To sum it up, Sputnik was state of the art stuff back in 1957 when the Soviets launched this baby into space (October Skies anyone?) and now, most of the “state of the art” equipment that went into making Sputnik work can be found in everyday appliances laying around your pad. Pretty cool, eh?
[Link] How to Build Your Own Sputnik
In 1957 the Sputnik 1 satellite was seen as a technological marvel, the result of many years work by some of the Soviet Union’s most talented engineers and scientists. But by today’s standards, was it really such a big deal? In 2007, how hard would it be to build a fully working Sputnik in the comfort of your own living room?
In simple terms, the Sputnik satellite was a metal sphere almost 2ft (61cm) in diameter, containing a radio transmitter. It also had a battery; equipment to measure temperature; barometric and temperature activated switches; and a fan to stop it getting too hot.
It sent its famous “beep beep” radio signals to earth, altering the transmission to indicate changes in temperature or a sudden drop in pressure caused by a puncture in the satellite’s case. And that’s about it.