Science: The Moon's Far Side

Just before midnight, Soviet TV viewers sat up and paid rapt attention. On the screen flashed the first pictures men had ever seen of the moon's hidden face. The Soviet's Lunik III had performed just as Russian space scientists predicted, in a display of engineering virtuosity that was the greatest achievement yet in man's exploration of space.

Next day the Russians released a picture of Lunik III and a fairly detailed explanation of how it took its epoch-making pictures. Lunik III, a notably sophisticated mechanism, proved to be a top-shaped 614-lb. object incrusted...

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