By: Nathan Traini
Right now, it seems hard to imagine, but we are on the cusp of a great adventure. By “we,” I mean the 7.3 Billion people that live on this planet. The adventure of space, the final frontier, is more complicated than anyone is prepared for. There are various world problems that need to be solved and there are solutions in the works to solve world thirst/hunger, climate change, and terrorism. There will always be crime, but war between nations must stop before we embark on this adventure to end all adventures.
Space cannot be another prize to be fought over. There are various reasons why the world must go united into space, and it’s not only to sing Kumbaya. The first reason we must establish peace in space is because war in space will destroy our species. If we find the energy to traverse our solar system in under 6 months, the raw power could destroy large portions of our planet if used for war.
The second reason we must go peacefully into the unknown is because it’s unknown. If we don’t want to start a war with ourselves in space we don’t want to start one with some vastly advanced beings. There seems to be three options when talking about other intelligent life forms, their intentions, and when/if we will encounter any. The first option is there aren’t any intelligent life forms because they didn’t evolve or they destroyed themselves. The second option is that they exist but they haven’t found a way to go faster than the speed of light to visit any other star systems in a being’s lifetime. The third option is that they have found a way to go faster than light and, since we obviously haven’t seen any, don’t interfere with planets before they enter space. The intelligent life forms could be millions of years ahead of us or hundreds of years. Either way, extraterrestrials would be peaceful for the same reason we must be peaceful, because they’d possess so much raw power that could destroy entire worlds.
This is crazy talk you say, we are hundreds of years away from man leaving our solar system let alone encountering intelligent life. Well, NASA has found it possible to go faster than light if they could find a way to curve spacetime around a craft. The craft wouldn’t actually accelerate, it would curve spacetime behind and in front of itself to create a bubble of spacetime, according to NASA. The theory says they’d be accelerating physical space past the speed of light, since it has no mass, and the craft would be along for the ride.
This month has brought another reason why we should heavily fund space travel. NASA has found strong indications that life could exist on Saturn’s moon Enceladus by examining molecular hydrogen that the spacecraft Cassini captured from a water jet ejected by the strong pressures the moon is under from Saturn according to CNN. Due to torsion forces, Enceladus has liquid water under the surface because the moon has a molten core. NASA thinks there’s life that could exist like the life here on Earth which thrives by hydrothermal vents deep in the ocean.
Right now, commercial space travel companies like SpaceX have made considerable leaps in cost reduction by reusing the booster stages of rockets. They successfully relaunched a reused rocket in late March 2017 which carried a satellite into geosynchronous orbit according to SpaceX’s website.They will launch their Falcon Heavy rocket in the near future which would allow manned missions to the Moon and Mars. In late 2018 Space X will fly two private citizen around the Moon and back.
The possibilities for profits to be made in space are endless when one thinks about mining asteroids and manned space travel. For now Space X has been dependent of the government for subsidies and NASA is one of the few customers.
As for governments and space flight, countries like China, Russia, and the US have been in space for decades and are the only countries capable of manned space flight. For other countries like Israel, India, Nigeria, Iran, Ukraine, Japan and France they have launched satellites into space or are planning to.
Many of the greatest inventions have started out with government funding. Inventions like GPS, the Internet, bar codes, the micro chip, touch screens, and wind powered generators.
When a species colonizes an uninhabited planet they increase their ability to survive astronomical disasters by a hundred fold. The amount of equipment and things a colony will need to survive for generations on an uninhabited planet will create a whole industry and orient the human race towards the stars and instead of resting on old ideas we will have to innovate. That forced innovation will push us to places we couldn’t imagine.