The Benefits of the Space Exploration Program for the Public

Martin Elvis has his Ph.D. and is the Senior Astrophysicist at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO). He has written over 300 articles features in scholarly journals and is on the top 250 most cited researchers list, with over 15,000 citations, according to ISI Highly Cited Research. Elvis believes that the American people have lost interest in space because NASA has been stereotyped as a facile operation for expensive journeys of adventure. The public are unaware of the sublime potentiality the space program can have on the economy.

He exemplifies, while referring to American space resources, “Beaming solar power to Earth, mining the Helium isotope, and …mining asteroids for iron, water, and methane for rocket fuel. These are truly vast resources, with trillions of dollars in street value, and capable of solving today’s oil-based energy crisis” (7).

Citizens have been uninformed of the multifaceted disposition of the space program. They think that the space program is too expensive for the state of the economy, but in actuality, space pioneering can help the nation’s monetary situation.

Elvis reports, “Military security, from spy satellites to the GPS system is also robust; the United States Air Force (USAF) and National Reconnaissance Office space programs form a $20-$30 billion-year enterprise” (4). The space program has created a profitable and thriving business trade.

Also, new technologies to improve America’s national security have been greatly provided for, via by the space program. Space exploration benefits America and should continue because of the long-term fiscal gain, due to the constant demand for innovation, brought on by discovery.

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Neil deGrasse Tyson is the Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History. He has a Ph.D. in Astrophysics and is a science communicator. In 2001, President Bush appointed Tyson to serve on a 12-member commission that studied the Future of the US Aerospace Industry.

Tyson believes that the lust for war against peers, money, and dominance are the three archetypal reasons that the world got involved in space exploration. In 1961, President Kennedy presented a speech in which he encouraged America to reach for the moon. Tyson points out, “Kennedy’s speech was not simply a call for advancement or achievement; it was a battle cry against communism. He might have simply said, ‘let’s go to the moon: what a marvelous place to explore!’ But no one would have written the check” (4). America has always strived for intergalactic pioneering with specific goals in mind. There was always an objective to space exploration, besides that of the sheer love for adventure.

Tyson exemplifies with the case of the Hubble Telescope and its blurry images. He shows, “Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers adapted the techniques that the Hubble scientists were using to analyze the telescope’s blurry images and applied them to mammography, leading to significant advances in the early detection of breast cancer” (25). Put simply, countless women are alive today because scientists were trying to fix a space camera. If such great contributions to society came from a few space-related repairs, try to conceptualize what the space industry could do with full public support.

Tyson shows, “The Apollo program produced technologies that improved kidney dialysis and water purification systems; sensors to test for hazardous gases; fire-resistant fabrics used by firefighters….. digital imaging, implantable pacemakers, collision- avoidance systems, [and] LASIK eye surgery…” (15). All of these listed ingenuity feats were contrived because astronauts needed similar new technologies to accomplish their vocations. Tyson enhances, “Imagine the excitement when NASA, bolstered by a fully funded long-term plan, starts to select the first astronauts to walk on Mars. Right now, those science-savvy future explorers are in middle school (29). The space program has been practically demonized by the public; people don’t realize the amelioration space innovation has on their everyday lives.

Instead of abstaining from space, Americans should educate themselves and their youth on the quintessential impact space has on not only innovation, but economic prosperity as well. Perhaps the best way to inform the next generation is through television. Gary D. Gaddy has his Ph.D. in Mass Communication Research and an M.A. in Communication Studies. He has published multiple homogenous articles about juvenile career consummation, such as High School Order and High School Achievement, Television’s Impact on High School Achievement, and Television and Scholastic Achievement: A Study of American High School Students.

Gaddy believes that youth’s future adulthood and career choices are heavily influenced by what they observe on TV. He writes, “Television influences achievement as it molds children’s thinking about school, influencing their expectations and aspirations” (12). Since TV is such a demiurge upon the young individual, educational space programs are an excellent way of manifesting the societal and monetary benefits of space. It might help to reduce the negative correlation and exhibit all of the edification of innovation brought on by space exploration. Gaddy emphasizes, “Television tends to displace other activities which serve the same needs but are less readily available or require more effort” (14).

There are other pedagogical educational sources, but Gaddy feels that TV is the easiest for people to turn to and utilize. There may be some people to whom television is confusing and anomalous. In this case, perhaps books or clubs might help to involve and confer with these individuals. Whatever the avenue, the road must be paved for national awareness and partisanship for the contentious, yet conspicuous profits of a space centered nation. After all, one cannot deny the monolithic innovations that have advanced humanity into a modern era. Such movements were generated by astronauts needing a new tool to accomplish their mission. Without gadgets as simple as the uniforms firefighters wear, where would we be today without the auspice of such a laudable a space program?

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The Benefits of the Space Exploration Program for the Public. (2022, Dec 10). Retrieved from

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