Humankind has grown from what it once was. The most intriguing factor in humans is our curiosity to solve the mysteries and the secrets of nature and its surrounding. Our civilization has covered a lot of what the earth has to offer. We have spread our wings to fly in search of mysteries outside our general bounds and now we are actively attempting to make space travel no mere fiction. In this article, we will be focusing on the overall and recent developments in space exploration projects which may one day make commuting in space possible.
Space Exploration and Mankind
The exploration of outer space with the help of astronomy and cutting-edge space technology is what we generally call space exploration. It usually refers to the physical exploration that is being conducted by human spaceflights and robotic space probes.
It has progressed in a grand scheme throughout the years. Space travel and exploration has become the goal of many countries and their success rate has increased drastically.
The Current State of Space Exploration and Travel
Space exploration and travel is a project that has mostly been dominated by government-aided space programs from different countries. Among them, the most active and successful organizations are NASA (USA), Roscosmos (Russia), JAXA (Japan), ISRO (India), and so on. Throughout the years, these organizations have made history and pulled out the unthinkable. From sending the first man to step on the moon to launching multiple satellites in the earth’s orbit for a fraction of cost, the achievements are huge.
But this isn’t the case anymore. Many private organizations are funded by billionaires and space enthusiasts in achieving the same goals. Private participation in space exploration is an effort that was in the making for a long time. And in that sector, huge progress and noticeable achievements were made possible by private space projects like SpaceX and Blue Origin.
The New Goals and Aims of Space Programmes
The essential goals of space programs throughout the years have been to gather knowledge that is out of bounds, utilize the opportunity and everything it has to offer, for the better of humankind and also, keep up national prestige. But with more privatized space programmes like Blue Origin by Jeff Bezos and SpaceX by Elon Musk, the goals have widened.
The current goal of both Blue Origin and SpaceX is to make space exploration as cheap as possible. A huge amount of capital is required to run space programmes. From top-tier equipment, experiments, tests, gears and the space shuttle itself. The space shuttle requires a lot of money to make and it can be often used once. There are often instances where it doesn’t work and ultimately fails to cause a huge loss. This makes space projects a very costly process and slows down development. The average cost of a space shuttle is roughly 450 million USD.
Blue Origin and SpaceX have seen a huge cost-cutting potential here. They plan to build reusable rockets, and that too for a fraction of the average cost. SpaceX’s recent Falcon 9 had an average cost of about 60 million USD. Once the experiment on reusing themes efficiently becomes successful, the cost for space exploration and travel will drastically decrease.
Another goal led by these programs is to establish human civilization in outer space. The popular belief of saving humanity on earth is to settle on the neighboring planet after making them suitable for habitation. Elon Musk’s goal of reducing the cost of space travel is essential for his prime goal of setting up colonies on Mars.
The Fight of Legions
With more and more space programs set up, both government and privately funded, it will ultimately benefit humankind. Also, the competition across the board has been more intense than ever. Everyone is trying to pull off something before the other and it is not just about pride but also capitalization on space. The market of settlement in outer space, even as a vacation, has become the new niche. It will be interesting to see who comes out at the top and whether there will be more competitors in the market.
As things are planned and if everything goes accordingly, space travel will soon become a commercial aspect even for a normal man. It sure will cost a huge sum for those who can afford it but in return will get the most mesmerizing experience of their lives. Until the dream becomes a reality and even cheaper so that most can afford it, all we can do is wait and follow the beautiful project closely.