Space: The Final Frontier
Well, it's not the final one, we know less about the oceans apparently. But it's a romantic place to visit. How many of us have looked up on a starry night and wondered just what it's really like up there?
And yet there seems to be some squabbling over whether we should be trying to make a move into space. No, they argue, we should focus on solving our problems here on Earth first.
The human species is like a shark, we need to keep swimming fowards, if we stop, we die. We need somethimg to aim for, a goal to inspire us. Space is that goal, exploration our inspiration.
The US still leads the way in this, though Europe is becoming more daring, and now the Chinese and possibly the Indians are getting in on the act. The ISS was the first great step, working together to put something permanent in space. Now it seems that the idea is to dump it and jump straight for the Moon or Mars.
Well, that's just wrong. What takes the most effort in the journey to the Moon? Takeoff.
A space ship uses something like 95% of it's energy just breaking free of our atmosphere. So why not make the missions two step? Find a cheap and easy way to get people to the ISS, then build ships there to take us deeper into the stars?
I'm all for a Moonbase. What a great idea. And then on to Mars.
Why? Well, we're rapidly outgrowing our planet. 6 Billion people live here now, set to get much higher soon. The Chinese already have a population cap to try and contain it. The Indians must be thinking about it soon.
Now add the possibility of some catastrophe (a meteor, or a global pandemic) wiping us all out, and the phrase 'don't keep all your eggs in one basket' starts coming to mind.
Plus, look at the technology that comes from these sorts of developments, the heroes and role models.
So, sod this nation state idea, let's get all the space agencies around the world, create one big World Space Administration and start making these things happen.
The recent media hype and interest in the Mars landers shows the people want it, so come on, let's go. Look out Mars, here we come.