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I Dream of Space Travel
Space Shuttle Program
It's 1981 and Space Shuttle Columbia STS1 is taking off in her maiden voyage into space. Living on the Space Coast of Florida we have the luxury of watching this nation at it's best through the Space Shuttle Program. The years of dreaming of becoming an astronaut and diligently following the space program has only increased the desire for space travel among many.
After each shuttle disaster our heroes picked this country right back up, taking us onward into space again and again. This is why our flag is on the moon, we are a solid country of innovation and bravery. So the question is, what now?
Atlantis, A Final Goodbye
It's been over 30 years since Astronaut McBride took Space Shuttle Enterprise on her first flight, skyrocketing America into space travel history. So why haven't don't we have a replacement shuttle after 30 years? The answer is complicated. After much research it seems there is a variation of reasons, some being government restrictions, some are financial, partly because our shuttles are so highly developed they haven't needed much consideration for replacement.
The big picture isn't why we don't have something in place right at this moment, but how we can get there. This opens the door for the commercial industry to start picking up where beauracracy leaves off. In 2005, the Ansari X-Prize was given to Scaled Composites for Space Ship One; the worlds very first commercial space ship.
What is so important about our space program?
Besides creating jobs and the future of our children, some of what we see and do everyday is a direct result of the engineering efforts from the space program.
Many lives have been saved through break through NASA technology, innovations in air travel, science based experiments from schools starting from elementary through collegiate, advances in weather for warnings and safety preparations. These are just a few examples.
Commercial Space Travel
Why support a commercial space program? It seems so far from reality. Even though a ticket for Virgina Galactic is $200,000 for a trip into space I would gladly pay it. In fact, I plan to. Just after the house is fixed and the student loans are paid off but I will go into space.
Readily available commercial space flights to the ISS can help save the planet. Some possibilities could include space ports for docking several space ships and even leaving one there for emergencies, lab modules for students to participate in their own science experiements in space.
Also consider the advantages of adding manufacturing modules to build satellites and vehicles in space reducing the necessary fuels left in the atmosphere by launching multiple rockets with heavy equipment from the ground up.
The more support these companies receive for commercial space flights, the more demand is created in the industry for the future. My future, your future and the future of the children today is depending on us doing our part. I made it a goal to someday purchase a ticket aboard Virgin Galactic, even if it takes a decade.