The End of an Era

Posted: July 10, 2011 by writingsprint in postaday2011, postaweek2011
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Space Shuttle Atlantis

Space Shuttle Atlantis (NASA photo)

One of my Facebook friends asked if we will ever put another man in space, and WordPress asked if we were happy or sad to see the last flight of the space shuttle.

I love the idea of manned space travel, but, putting my presidential hat on, the problem is, why would you do it, other than to fire people’s imaginations with the amazing things you can do? Setting up a massive solar grid to power the world’s cities would be a great idea, if the technology was more efficient. Mining deuterium from the moon for fusion is an excellent idea, but fusion hasn’t been effectively developed as an energy technology yet.

Unless China takes the lead, I think it’ll be another generation before we see a jump forward in manned space flight. The Americans and Russians have the experience but not the economic capability, and other nations like India and China have the funding but not the experience. It’s not like they couldn’t beg, borrow or buy it from another country, though. In that case, the question becomes whether or not they would want to. I think we’ll see more with robots based on the amazing things that UAV’s can do today.

If we can save our economy, and get fusion to work, we have an excellent reason to establish a permanent base on the moon. From there, we could assemble a spaceship that could travel to Mars.

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