Why Should Humans Explore Space? Essay

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Carl Sagan once said “every planetary civilization will be endangered by impacts from space, every surviving civilization is obliged to become spacefaring--not because of exploratory or romantic zeal, but for the most practical reason imaginable: staying alive... If our long-term survival is at stake, we have a basic responsibility to our species to venture to other worlds.” The National Aeronautics and Space Administration or NASA, is executing Sagan’s words every day. President Dwight D. Eisenhower created NASA in 1958 with the purpose of peaceful rather than military space exploration and research to contribute to society. Just 11 years after the creation, NASA put Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the moon, the first humans to…show more content…
It is impossible to stimulate our economy or to find new things in space without a space effort. The space exploration has only begun and it has only been happening for four decades so why stop something that only has truly begun. Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) is a joint project with NASA and the German Aerospace Center. The idea for this project was to build an airborne observatory and put a German built 2.5-meter telescope inside a modified American Boeing 747. The idea of the project is that because the telescope is high in the sky, the infrared blocking water vapor on the ground will not affect the telescope and the telescope will have a much clearer view of the infrared universe (than if a telescope was on the ground). SOFIA objectives are to study the composition of planetary atmospheres, investigate structure and composition of comets, learn about the interstellar medium, and to learn about the formation of stars. The project began in 1996 with an estimated cost of 185 million dollars and was to be completed in 2001. Unfortunately with delays and setbacks the project was not completed until 2007 and its first flight with the telescope working was not until 2010. The price of the project doubled to about 360 million dollars, and to operate the plane, it will cost an additional 100 million dollars a year. Is the amount of money spent towards this worth the
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