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Satellites Trivia

Quiz: artificial satellites, space stations and telescopes

  1. What was the name of the first human-made object to orbit Earth?
  2. Can you name the first communications satellite? It also enabled the first transatlantic transmission of television signals.
  3. Which British writer was one of the first to show how satellites could be used for worldwide communication?
  4. OPS 5111, or Navstar 1, was an American satellite launched in 1978 as part of the development program for what?

  5. What term means the time it takes for a signal to go from the sending station through the satellite to the receiving station?
  6. In 1960, NASA launched Tiros-1, it was the first of its type to be considered a success. What sort of sattelite was it?
  7. What is the name of the group of artifical satellites working together operated by US aerospace company SpaceX? Also, who is the founder of SpaceX?
  8. What do we usually call an outdoor parabolic antenna?
  9. What name is given to a circular orbit above Earth's Equator in which a satellite appears to be stationary?
  10. What was the name of the first satellite launched by the America in 1958? The name is guessable!
  11. Can you name the Soviet space dog who was the first living creature to orbit the Earth?
  12. The ISS is the biggest satellite in orbit, what does ISS stand for?
  13. Also called a junk orbit or disposal orbit, what is the most common term for an orbit where old satellites are sent not to pose a threat to those still in service?
  14. The first ever French satellite was named by its press after which popular French comics character?
  15. Which German astronomer was first to coin the word ‘satellite’? He used it to describe the moons orbiting Jupiter.
  16. Launched by NASA in May 1973, what was the name of the first United States space station?
  17. In 1979, the ESA launched Ariane-1 to put two telecommunications satellites into orbit. What does the acronym ESA stand for?
  18. Name the largest astronomical observatory ever built to go into space, launched by NASA in 1990?
  19. Which belt in the inner region of Earth's magnetic field endangers the electronics of satellites?
  20. Which Russian space station operated in low Earth orbit from 1986 to 2001?


  1. Sputnik (the first artificial satellite was Sputnik 1, launched by the Soviet Union in 1957)
  2. Telstar (1962)
  3. Arthur C Clarke
  4. Global Positioning (GPS)
  5. Delay
  6. Weather satellite
  7. Starlink. Elon Musk.
  8. Satellite dish
  9. Geostationary orbit
  10. Explorer (Explorer 1)
  11. Laika
  12. International Space Station
  13. A graveyard orbit
  14. Asterix (or A-1s)
  15. Johannes Kepler
  16. Skylab
  17. The European Space Agency (ESA)
  18. The Hubble Space Telescope
  19. Van Allen (radiation) belt
  20. Mir