Bryan Bonilla, Staff Writer

During the late 1900’s, Europe faced several problems, such as World War II and The Cold War. The Cold War was not like WWII because it was defined as a war of ideologies. One of their fiercest competition was “The Space Race” and its main goal was to get to the moon first.

In 1958, a new organization, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA, was created with the purpose of launching new prototypes of spacecrafts and satellites to check and recollect data of our solar system. During the late 1950’s, Americans were impressed with the innovation, that their country was developing. At the same time, the Soviet Union was also creating spacecrafts and satellites. These innovations would help them study, comprehend, and investigate space. NASA sent its first prototype of satellite to space under the name “Pioneer 0” and it received high honor from many U.S. citizens; however, it didn’t reach the orbit of the moon.

As a response to this action, the Soviet Union sent their own spacecraft with the name of “Luna 1958A”, which would accomplish the same result as Pioneer. For several years, NASA and the Soviet Space Program were tied, both sending satellites which would achieve the destination of the Earth’s orbit. However, just one of them would be the first country to land on the moon and win the Space Race. In 1959, the Soviet Space Program sent Luna 2 to the moon, which successfully landed for the first time. In fact, this was the first time that humans launched a satellite that landed on the moon or even passed the moon’s orbit. As time went by, the United States and Soviet Union sent more satellites and remained successful. On the other hand, the Soviet Space Program’s satellites were reaching the moon’s orbit on rare occasions.

This race would soon come to an end in 1969, when Apollo 11 landed successfully on the moon, carrying 3 passengers aboard the spacecraft. The important fact was that the U.S. was the first country who sent people to the moon and reached it successfully. Overall, the U.S. had made better spacecrafts and satellites than the Soviet Union. The Space Race left the United States to expand and planted curiosities to further explore the solar system and other galaxies.

PHOTOS: Relive the Apollo 11 moon landing through these historical images
10News San Diego

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