It all started of course with the launch of the first satellite, Sputnik 1, Oct. 4, 1957. And let's not forget Sputnik 2, one month after, Nov. 3, 1957, carrying the famous astrodog, Laika. Was it really only 50 years ago?
This year also marks fifty years since the establishment of the International Geophysical Year.
And the lawyers were not far behind: as I've blogged about here, 2007 marks not the 50th, but the 40th anniversary of the so-dubbed Magna Carta of space, the Outer Space Treaty. After all, you can't change the world and usher in a new era without getting some shiny new law to go with it.
Celebrate space all year. Over on the law side, the University of Nebraska already got the ball rolling. And here's another event: the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNCOPUOS) and the International Astronautical Federation, in cooperation with UNESCO, COSPAR, the IAA, the International Institute of Space Law and ESA, is hosting an event featuring "four distinguished speakers who will reflect on what has been achieved in space over the past fifty years, and who will look ahead to what can be anticipated in the coming fifty years." The event takes place on March 21, 2007 at UNESCO in Paris. Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson will there from my hometown, NYC. Here is the programme.
(And, speaking of UNCOPUOS, I would note another 50th anniversary: as I've posted, the 50th session of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space will be held from June 6-15, 2007 in Vienna, Austria.)
A toast! Happy anniversary (actually, anniversaries) to all space agers (and space dogs ;).