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The Value of Space Exploration

The ever-interesting and useful Bad Astronomer pointed me to an interesting discussion on Universe Today about the value of space exploration. We at Mains Associates of course believe in it strongly. One of our projects (long ago, in a galaxy, uh, right here) supported Henry Hertzfeld's research into the returns to NASA's Life Sciences R&D. You can read the whole report on his site, but the gist is,

On the basis of these conservative estimates taken with mission success of the life sciences effort and ample evidence of other social benefits from the descriptions provided by the users of many specific life sciences spinoff applications, it can be concluded that NASA Life Sciences investments have more than “paid for themselves.”

While this is just one area of space exploration, it does focus on the economic benefits, ignoring the ancillary benefits so many of the commenters on Universe Today also point out. Is space exploration worth it? The answer is a resounding, "Yes!"

Space exploration is

Space exploration is definitely worth the money. I'd rather spend the money on finding new places to live in outerspace than spend it on the war in Iraq. Plus people find outerspace interesting due to the possibility of other people being out there. Thanks, supreme buy

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