Timeline: Race for space
Saturday 26 July 2008
* 29 July 1958: President Eisenhower signs the National Aeronautics and Space Act, establishing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa).
* 11 October 1958: First Nasa launch from Cape Canaveral: Pioneer 1.
* 12 April 1961: Yuri Gagarin becomes the first human to go into space, in the Vostok I spacecraft. Flight lasts 108 minutes.
* 5 May 1961: Alan Shepard becomes the first American in space aboard Freedom 7.
* 20 February 1962: John Glenn becomes the first American to orbit the earth, in the Friendship 7 Mercury spacecraft.
* 20 July 1969: First moon landing. Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin become the first and second humans on the moon, arriving aboard Apollo 11.
* 28 January 1986: Space Shuttle Challenger blows up just after take-off. All crew members die.
* 20 February 1986: Russia launches the core module for the Mir Space Station.
* 24 April 1990: Hubble telescope launched from Space Shuttle Columbia.
* 20 November 1998: First part of the International Space Station – the Russian-built Zarya module – is launched.
* 28 April 2001: The first space tourist, American Dennis Tito, spends eight days on the International Space Station. He pays £14m for the privilege.
* 1 February 2003: The crew of the Space Shuttle Columbia perish when it breaks up on re-entry.
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 2 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 4 Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
New York woman gives up $95,000 a year job to work in an ice cream parlour in the Caribbean
Inside Travel: Greece 2015 Q&A - should we cancel our Greek holiday? Are our flights safe? And what will we be spending there?
The 10 Best lightweight luggage
The most powerful passports in the world
The 10 Best hiking boots
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
£32K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Dining Room Head Chef to work for one of ...
£27K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pastry Sous Chef / Experienced Pastry Che...
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A growing business that has been ope...
£24800 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As one of London's leading Muse...