Why Space Matters
Why explore space? Well, for one, it’s about life on Earth.
The exploration of space is an engine for creation. It sparks high-tech and high-paying jobs. It captures the pulse of our planet and its complicated climate. It spurs technological innovation that enhances daily life, from advances in aviation to medical devices that help save lives. It is also a key engine for igniting interest in youth to study science, technology and math. Dollars spent on space exploration don’t get blasted into Earth orbit.
Everyone on Earth is a beneficiary of space exploration – robotic and human – with a global return on investment that is truly immeasurable.
A Wellspring of Tech Innovations
For more than 40 years, the technologies and research derived from space exploration have been successfully applied to a long list of items that enhance our quality of life here on Earth. Here’s just a small peek —
- Water-filtration systems
- Ultra-small electronic circuits that enhance computers to countless medical advances, such as bone-density measurement technology and miniaturized heart pumps
- Plastic-like metals used in jewelry and sporting goods
- Aviation safety systems for pilots
- Intelligent ovens that allow you to begin dinner before you even get home
- LASIK surgery…and a lot more.
Educating the Future Workforce
Plain and simple … the exploration of space is inspiring.
The thought of exploring new frontiers has motivated millions of young people to vigorously engage in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in order to be a part of something bigger than themselves…from building rockets to on-orbit spacewalks.
NASA has launched numerous math and science-based education programs designed to increase STEM literacy among students at all age levels and from all sorts of backgrounds. Such skills help NASA and industry maintain the bold course of innovation and discovery by infusing the workforce with new young talent from decade to decade. Even better, it makes us a great nation; one whose youth can compete on a global level. Click here to learn more.
An Eye on Mother Nature
Mother Nature can be unpredictable. Less so when space technology is involved. For decades, satellites have kept a watchful eye on the weather and helped media and government officials communicate when it’s time to evacuate for an oncoming hurricane, harvest our crops or even head to the beach for a perfect day of fun and sun.
More recently, spacecraft pioneered by NASA have begun studying long-term changes in the atmosphere, the oceans and land masses. The findings reveal how much our everyday actions impact our environment and climate.
Click here for more information on space exploration’s effect on Earth observation.