This recording captures the 20 to 40 megacycle transmission signals of Sputnik I as it passed over Australia on October 7, 1957, during a 95-minute revolution around earth. Thousands of Australians witnessed the satellite in the night sky and many more tuned in to the satellite’s “blip-blip-blip” dialect with household radio sets.
The nondescript sound was in fact the first communication from beyond the earth’s surface. The space age had begun. Satellite technologies continue to be used for telephone, radio and internet applications, especially in geographically isolated areas not reached by terrestrial technology.