Bhumi B. Patel

fellow traveller

Sputnik 1 was the first artificial Earth satellite. The Soviet Union launched it into an elliptical low Earth orbit on 4 October 1957. It was a 58 cm (23 in) diameter polished metal sphere, with four external radio antennas to broadcast radio pulses. Its radio signal was easily detectable even by radio amateurs,[6] and the 65° inclination and duration of its orbit made its flight path cover virtually the entire inhabited Earth. This surprise success precipitated the American Sputnik crisis and triggered the Space Race, a part of the Cold War. The launch ushered in new political, military, technological, and scientific developments. Tracking and studying Sputnik 1 from Earth provided scientists with valuable information, even though the satellite wasn't equipped with sensors. The density of the upper atmosphere could be deduced from its drag on the orbit, and the propagation of its radio signals gave information about the ionosphere.

sputnik (n.)
"artificial satellite," extended from the name of the one launched by the Soviet Union Oct. 4, 1957, from Russian sputnik "satellite," literally "traveling companion" (in this use short for sputnik zemlyi, "traveling companion of the Earth").

Work-in-progress Showing Date: November 2, 2017 at Pacific Motion, Santa Cruz

Presented as part of max10, Santa Cruz

Choreographer: Bhumi B. Patel and Jordan Wanderer

Original Cast:  Bhumi B. Patel and Jordan Wanderer
Music: recordings from NASA
Costumes: Bhumi B. Patel and Jordan Wanderer

somewhere better than here/nowhere better than here, 2017 // image © Zackary Forcum