Space exploration, Is it worth billions of dollars investment for it? Should we go back to the moon again? If yes, then why? Why would a nation expend so much to just send a robot to an unknown planet? These are some questions that come to one’s mind whenever one thinks about space exploration.
Space exploration began some six or seven decades ago when the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1 satellite in 1957 followed the first animal into space, the Laika Dog, again followed by Cosmonauts(Russian Astronauts), Yuri Gagarin and Valentina Tereshkova. Then the US entered into all this and the era of space exploration began. Billions of dollars were invested in all these programs. The US government spends 1.6 percent of its annual budget on space research programs. China is also gradually entering into all this which was the third country to soft-land on the moon after the US and USSR. India is also making rapid strides in this field through its government-funded ISRO(Indian Space Research Organization) which will be the fourth nation to soft-land on the moon on July 14th, 2019 through Chadrayan-2, if by God’s Grace it lands successfully. Despite being a third world country, India is investing a lot in the quest for space technology. Here actually arises the question. Is it worth it all this million dollar investment when you have your own internal issues like poverty, starvation, unemployment, etc? So let’s shed some light on this.
There’re two sides to this argument. Many people argue about the above-said fact about why wasting so much money when you can utilize that in other areas which are more important. Well my side of the argument is, are we really utilizing the money that should be invested for the betterment of society in the first place? Or are we indulged in some other activities which aren’t allowing this money or basic necessities to reach the ones who need it? , if you know what I mean. But we keep complaining about money being wasted on space research and all.
Again people don’t look into the facts. They don’t realize how much we’ve benefitted from space exploration, but just sit somewhere and condemn the nations that are indulged in these. One of the biggest benefits is satellites.
Without the satellites, we couldn’t have imagined the world we have today where we can communicate with anyone we want at any given moment. Satellites are the reason we have understood the geography of our earth. It helps us know the weather we are going to have tomorrow. It has given us the GPS (Global Positioning System).
Also exploring other planets or our own moon has its benefits. The Russians are thinking about sending two robots to their mission to the moon where they would build their moon base. That would help in exploring that place more. If we could get conditions on the moon or elsewhere where we can do agriculture, then it’d be great. As the amount of land for agriculture saw a decline in recent years, it may be possible we won’t have enough land or space to harvest our own food, ultimately leading to starvation and death. So if anyhow we could have a base somewhere on mars or the moon where we can plant trees or harvest food that would do great good for humanity.
There are also many rare substances found on the moon or the mars that are barely seen on our planet. So they can be utilized too. Also by putting satellites and crewed spacecraft into orbit has helped scientists learn a lot about cosmology, astronomy, General Relativity, space physics, space biology, and other stuff that can’t by any means be ignored. Scientists have also understood how life has evolved on earth over the years. They are also digging a lot deep into the existence of extra-terrestrial life which is a really hot topic these days after famous Physicist Enrico Fermi’s most famous sentence or question “Where are they? Where are all the aliens?”, which is called Fermi’s paradox which asks the question about the existence of extraterrestrial life and why nobody has come to visit us yet after so many years of the Big Bang. Well, that’s a topic for another day. But, overall the fact is that we shouldn’t ignore the advantages of space exploration despite all the debate.
Also, we have to be patient about space exploration. We should realize that it’s just 70 odd years into space research. So it’ll take time. Every great thing takes its time. So we have to persevere and be patient in our endeavour and continue to explore the universe which is out there, waiting for us to discover it.
Some interesting articles
- Fermi’s quest for an alien civilization
- Now Travel Galaxy to Another Galaxy by Space Engine
- Why haven’t we discovered aliens yet?
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