Sputnik 1 (/ˈspʌtnɪk, ˈspʊtnɪk/; see § Etymology) was the first artificial Earth satellite. It was launched into an elliptical low Earth orbit by the USSR on 4 October 1957 as part of the Soviet space program. It orbited for three weeks before its batteries ran out. The satellite then silently continued to orbit the planet for two months before it fell back into the atmosphere on 4 January 1958.

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