We all know that NASA spends billions of dollars on space programs, and there are those who fail to understand the point of it. Why are we funding these programs? Are there any benefits for normal people who don’t want to live on Mars? Well, there is a lot more to it than traveling between planets, and we are already reaping the benefits from space research.
Multi-Billion Space Exploration
The cost of space exploration is high. We are still far away from hyper engines and spaceships you see in Sci-Fi movies, and it still takes a lot of resources to leave the Earth’s orbit. Countries spend billions of dollars to explore our solar system, and they have been improving space science for the past seventy years.
If we take a look at NASA’s budget since Neil Armstrong set his foot on the Moon, we can see that it has been declining. The United States decided to spend less money on space exploration and tried to find different ways to get around financial problems.
In 2020, only 0.48% of the Federal budget was invested in NASA, which is significantly less compared to over 4% spent during the sixties. The primary reason why they were able to cut costs is their partnership with private companies like SpaceX.
We all know that the U.S. “won” a space race when they sent the man on the Moon, but other countries are still following closely. Aside from the U.S., the important countries for space exploration are China, Russia, Japan, the United Kingdom, Canada, and others.
Currently, countries are looking for ways to ensure the survival of the human race, to gain scientific knowledge, learn more about life on Earth, space travel, and anything else that may help us improve as a species. Finally, all of us know about Elon Musk and his goal to terraform Mars and make it habitable for future generations. Whether this is possible or not doesn’t change the fact that space programs have improved a lot in the last couple of years.
What Do We Gain From It?
One of the main things people fail to understand is the importance of space agencies, technology development, and the potential that comes with it. Expanding the possibilities and spending money on exploration is beneficial for everyone on Earth.
We all know that the best scientists in the world are working on space programs, and they are able to achieve so much thanks to the amount of money spent on them. Some people might think that they don’t really want to live on the Moon and that they will have no benefits from it, but they are wrong.
Let’s take a look at some of the things an everyday person can gain from space exploration. Probably the first thing on the list is better health care. The experiments conducted for space travel have already improved the situation on Earth. Experiments performed on astronauts help us understand more about our bodies. They have brought a lot of positive changes. Space research has led to improvements for people suffering from cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, balance problems, osteoporosis, and many others.
Furthermore, when we understand how things work in the universe, we are able to make a change. One of the things that people take for granted is weather forecast, and it exists thanks to the government’s spending on space research. The same applies to measuring pollution, climate change, communication, and almost everything we have today.
One of the most important things we gain from space exploration is inspiration. NASA’s programs have served as an inspiration for many people around the world, including Elon Musk. They allow us to dream of something bigger and strive for a better future for every person on the planet.
Why Don’t We Just Explore Earth Instead?
The opposing side believes that exploring space is a waste of time. Why would we spend billions of dollars to explore the vast nothingness of space when there are so many problems here on our home planet? They think that scientists should turn their gaze away from space and focus on what’s here. However, things are not as simple as they seem.
The biggest benefits of space missions are accidental. Scientists will look for ways to tackle a problem they have encountered, and they will create something amazing that can help people around the world. Since our universe is a rather harsh environment, with no oxygen, no pressure, and with just a few atoms floating around, researchers need to find a way to make everything work.
A perfect example of this is solar cells. Did you know that NASA invented them? Did you know that there are no sockets in space? Well, they had to find a way to create the current and energy out of “nothing,” and solar cells are the result. Today, you can find them all over the world, and many suggest that they might be a key to clean energy and a healthier planet.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. NASA is behind cochlear implants, artificial limbs, scratch-resistant lenses, 3D food printing, anti-icing systems, firefighting equipment, water purification, food safety, gold plating, and many others.
Technology improvement in space exploration can be used on Earth as well, and it is just one of many ways it already helps people. As for exploring our planet, the majority of it has already been explored (if you don’t count the oceans). However, it is a lot easier to send someone in space than it is to send them to the bottom of the Mariana Trench.
Scientific Knowledge Is Always Worth It
Investing in knowledge is always the right choice. It is what makes us special and what allows us to grow and improve. New and exciting discoveries rarely benefit just one scientific field. All improvements help everyone. When scientists create a better engine, it can be used for anything, from cars to washing machines.
It also allows us, humans, to work as one. Take a look at the International Space Station. It was built by eighteen countries, and it gave so many benefits in fields of astronomy, physics, meteorology, astrobiology, and others.
Most importantly, it gives us hope. If we work together, we can achieve anything. There are no limits to what humans can do if they work as one, and we can make the world a better place. Imagine the future where you don’t need to worry about energy, food, or whether someone has clean water. This is not a dream. We are getting closer to it every day, and it is something we can achieve thanks to all the money invested in space research.
Who knows — maybe one day we will have success in our search for life far away from Earth and finally get the answer to whether we are alone in the universe.