THE NATION: Anniversary Jolt

Two years to the day after the beeps of Sputnik I proclaimed the beginning of the space age, the U.S.S.R. celebrated the anniversary by announcing a far more advanced step into space: a rocket shot that this week sent a 600-lb. instrumented payload hurtling into space on a trajectory calculated to curve around the moon and swing back toward the earth. The moon probe (see SCIENCE) required a rocket thrust of at least 600,000 Ibs., twice the thrust of the U.S.'s most powerful rocket engine. The Soviet feat was all the more embarrassing...

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