The Soviet Union and Sputnik

961 Words Feb 21st, 2018 4 Pages
This event does not seem very impressive now, but when it happened it had a massive political and psychological effect. It spawned the idea that the United States might be eclipsed by another world power in technological might and proved that the Soviet Union could make a missile that could reach the United States. As part of a broad response to this event the United States government created the Advanced Research Projects Agency, ARPA for short, which is now known as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency or DARPA. The mission of this new agency was “to foster advanced technologies and systems that create “revolutionary” advantages for the U.S. military” (Van Atta 20). Much of this advanced technology eventually made its way to the civilian market. Without Sputnik, technology that most people living in modern countries take for granted, such as the Global Positioning System, the Internet, and modern computer operating systems, would, possibly, not exist yet. The development of the Global Positioning System, GPS for short, was accelerated by Sputnik in more than one way. When Sputnik launched, Guier and Wieffenback were able to measure the doppler shift in the signal that was broadcast from Sputnik and successfully estimate the location of Sputnik. After telling their Laboratory’s Director about their discovery they were granted…

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