Proton rocket launch
A Proton rocket launching Zvezda Service Module for the International Space Station in 2000

Spaceflight is when a thing made by man flies into outer space. A spaceflight can happen with or without humans on board. The Russian Soyuz program, the US Space Shuttle and the International Space Station are examples of manned (with humans) missions for spaceflight. Space probes and satellites (which orbit the Earth), are examples of unmanned (without humans) spaceflights. These operate either by radio control or are fully independent.

Spaceflight is used for space exploration such as manned missions to the Earth's moon or unmanned missions to other planets in the solar system. Spaceflight can also be used for tourism and satellite telecommunications. A spaceflight begins with a rocket launch, which provides enough energy to get out of Earth's atmosphere and to orbit the Earth. Once the rocket is in space, the activity of the rocket is watched and studied by scientists back on Earth. Some rockets may remain in space forever, some break apart when they reenter Earth's atmosphere, while others may impact other planets.

The first artificial satellite of Earth was the Russian Sputnik 1 on October 4, 1957. The first unmanned spaceflight was completed by a German V-2 missile on October 3, 1942.


Spaceflight for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.