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Space Technolgy Programs Essay

1341 words - 6 pages

As a country we need to start investing more money and research into space technology. Programs currently exist for this effort, but the potential for research and progress is limited by a lack of funding; compared to other government funded programs, aerospace funding is pitiful. Continued research in space technology is a necessary step in our growth and development not just as a country but also as entire human race. If we are to achieve this goal, it is necessary to increase funding for space research and technology and consider the possibility of colonizing outer space. If we limit our existence to the planet Earth, and continue to drain the resources on this planet, we will destroy ...view middle of the document...

However, the benefits outweigh the risks, and I will tell you why.
What Aerospace Research Has Done For Humans
Over the years, many other applications and technologies have been created from aerospace research. One application is the modern-day water filter (Patrick). The prototypes were developed to provide the astronauts with clean water. This design is used in many household faucets and water treatment facilities today. Without it, clean, sanitary water would not be as readily available.
Another invention that resulted from aerospace research is the search and rescue device called Life Shears (Patrick). The concept came from the decoupling equipment used on space shuttles. The Life Shears are used for cutting or prying people out of wreckages. This was a revolution in search and rescue technology because of its low cost, noise, and low risk of injuring trapped victims. This invention was an invaluable tool in rescuing victims in the 911 attacks; without it the death toll would have been much higher.
Another by-product of aerospace research is the insulin pump (Patrick). It came from the idea to try to monitor the astronaut’s health remotely. The basic fundamentals of the system were used and adapted to help treat Type 1 diabetes, a disease that destroys the production of the body’s insulin. This injector has been used since the late 1980’s to regulate a person’s insulin levels. The technology was also used for blood sugar monitors used by doctors. If there was an increase in funding, more beneficial applications could come from the research.
The water filter, life-saving Life Shears, and the insulin pump are only a few examples of significant inventions that were derived from space research. Increased spending in this area could lead to even more significant contributions to our way of life. An example is the concept of constructing large, habitable structures in outer space. If the same principle would be applied in building structures on Earth, it would allow people to build massive structures that could hold more people in comfortable environments, conserving space on Earth and thus reducing the strain on our existing resources.
Financial Effects
The main drawback with space research is cost and time. Most projects and ideas for research are extremely expensive and time consuming. Therefore, benefits would not be seen until several years after the initial investment. Based on the byproducts of space research the actual pay off in technological and industrial advancement of any products developed is well worth the wait and cost.
The most well known organization in aerospace research and development is National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). As of 2014, NASA’s budget was $17.6 billion dollars (Kimberly). It may seem like a lot, but compared to other federally funded entities, it is miniscule. Compared to the funding of other government agencies, NASA has the fourth least amount of funding. It manages to only beat the...

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