The Importance of Space Exploration on the Future of the Human Race

December 2, 2010
More by this author
Space: the Final Frontier. An infinite supply of knowledge and resources await us, just outside our atmosphere. But more and more, it seems, people are beginning to question the importance of space exploration, the most prominent arguments against in including the opinions that it’s a waste of time and money, and that the risks far outweigh the benefits. It seems that the “space fever” which once gripped the nation, in the midst of the space race with the Soviet Union, no longer has hold over our world in the way it once did. Although many no longer agree, space exploration is one of the most important factors which will blast the human race into the future.
Space exploration may not only be important to scientific advancement, but to the future of the human race itself. As the population grows, humans put more and more pressure on the Earth, asking it not only for living space, but for resources to support them. Even now, humans are beginning to stress the environment, as is most evident in populated areas like China, in which the cities are filled with smog. Non-renewable resources will eventually run out and humans will be required to expand into and colonize space in order to survive.
More immediately, space exploration still provides numerous incentives. The idea of reaching into the heavens has the potential to inspire millions of children to work harder in school, and aspire to be astronauts, rocket scientists, and physicists. It will help promote and spread education, especially that involving science and math. It will provide a plethora of jobs, not only for those who actually travel into space, but for the tens of thousands of scientists, doctors, and engineers worldwide who would work together to support space programs. The incredibly complex missions require not only mainstream astronomers, but hundreds of scientists from specialized fields who each contribute seemingly miniscule bits, which without, the operations would fail completely.
In addition, expansion into space provides quite literally a universe of opportunity, especially for scientific and medicinal advancement. The exploration of the depths of space, other stars, and even other planets could help solve century-old questions involving where we came from, and how we got here. The study of alien environments could lead to the discovery of microbes, bacteria, and other prokaryotes which could lead to exponential leaps in the fields of evolution, and even medical treatment. The effect of zero-gravity on the human body could be examined, and possibly used to cure diseases. Even if the majority of missions were focused within the solar system, these would be the first stepping stones to moving beyond Sol, and to exploring neighboring star systems, and eventually, the deepest reaches of space.
The past itself has proven that space exploration can have positive technological and environmental impacts. During the 1950’s and 1960’s, fields such as rocketry, and especially computers and robotics, were furthered greatly as a result of the need for advancements in these areas to support space exploration at its current level. Monitoring systems aboard high-atmosphere satellites observe climate conditions world wide, map global changes such as global warming, and keep an eye on near-Earth objects which have the potential to collide with and wreak havoc upon our planet. In addition, space agencies such as NASA have been known to take a large part in studying atmospheric conditions, climate changes, and other global phenomena, in an attempt to preserve the planet and its inhabitants, as well as create technologies which have saved lives during emergencies and crises.
Perhaps the most important impact of space exploration would be on the human race itself. Accompanying this expansion would be an abundance of questions concerning how humans will be affected. Compared to the rest of the universe, the Earth is incredibly small and delicate. A greater understanding of just how fragile our planet is could lead to a greater respect and love for the Earth, and could inspire its inhabitants to take better care of her. As was said by one astronaut, from space, you can’t see political boundaries. Expansion off of our planet would require the collaboration of countries around the world, and this need for cooperation has the potential to ultimately lead to peace, for the first time in human history, as humans band together to face the unknown. Although the discovery of sentient life is highly unlikely, the probability that simple single-celled organisms exist and will be discovered by humans is quite high. This in itself would redefine how the human race views itself, armed with the knowledge that we are not alone.
Since the beginning of time, humans have looked up at the sky wondering what exactly was up there. For the first time in history, humans have the chance to answer that question. Although space exploration and the expansion into space would have many social and philosophical implications, in addition to requiring an exorbitant amount of resources, the future of the human race might depend on it. It would open up an infinite number of pathways, provide the resources to expand our knowledge indefinitely, and peacefully unite the human race as never before. Just perhaps, humans could find tranquility in the quiet of empty space.

Join the Discussion

This article has 8 comments. Post your own now!

kenezen said...
May 14, 2014 at 10:40 am
keep thinking! There is a limit to population and quality time on Earth. Logic. a Guy named McNamara was defense secretary in the 60's under John Kennedy said the same thing. Back then they said 10 billion people was the limit. We're getting there.quick. It's your world now insist on space exploration and human relocation!!  best of luck! 
cauphy1 said...
Mar. 27, 2013 at 12:06 pm
just to have any information about some subjets  
tacosonthelosse said...
Nov. 28, 2012 at 3:15 am
He helped with my school work too. I copy and pasted it and turned it in as my own:)
ZigaramBini replied...
Jan. 13, 2013 at 5:22 am
Good for you! I also used this article in my writing homework, but just for collecting knowledge... I feel more confortable by writing in my own way without being restricted, thus leaving my magical touch ;) ...  
get a life 1 said...
May 9, 2012 at 10:41 am
this article wasn't helpful and i disagree with everything he says because it maks no sence
xxrenegadexx replied...
Sept. 8, 2012 at 1:02 pm
Your grammar makes no "sence".
DayyRatliff said...
Sept. 30, 2011 at 10:59 am
This article was helpful, and I think sqapce exlporation is still important, because the way people talk, we don't have to many more promised days on earth.
BalackDeath said...
Feb. 13, 2011 at 12:32 am
Thanks Man helped with my school work
Site Feedback