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U.S. manned spaceflight proram - Essay Example

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Space travels have now become an integral part of the exploration programs in the outer world. These travels are undertaken with the stated objectives of carrying out researches and scientific studies. …
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Download file to see previous pages Space travels have now become an integral part of the exploration programs in the outer world. These travels are undertaken with the stated objectives of carrying out researches and scientific studies. During the cold war era, when both USSR and USA were busy in upstaging each other's maneuvers the spaceflight program got a big boost.Both countries used to suspect each other's motives and tried to be the first with the latest technology to spy from the outer world. All this, no doubt, enriched the space exploration program, but it came at a huge cost attached to it. This led to severe criticism of such a program and questions were being raised on the utility of such a program. With the disintegration of USSR into many smaller nations the race has come to a halt and now we have only one super-power, but the space program continues. It not only has strategic importance, but there are vast possibilities for the scientific community to know the nature, the environment, the surroundings of the earth etc. It appears little far fetched, but to explore the possibilities of life in the outer space will also be known only when we continue with the space exploration program. It is indeed capital intensive, and the outcome cannot be quantified in general terms, but it is also a fact that not every nation can afford to have such an ability to spend on exploring the outer world. Colino (1987) contends that when reviewing the space exploration program of U.S. a perceptible change in the policy is quite apparent. 'While in the 1960s and 1970s, U.S. space policy focused on given objectives ranging from national security, to Cold War competition with the Soviet Union, to the belief that exploration of space for learning, knowledge and, perhaps simply, "because it's there" were worthy goals per se. These clearly stated objectives fueled the most successful American space initiatives, many of which were conducted directly, openly, and, in some areas, with extensive international cooperation.'

Now the international community too is actively cooperating with America in the different forms to understand the intricacies of outer space. The financial aspect is of course looked mainly from the American pocket, and that is quite understandable as well. We cannot expect the countries like the third world nations, showing active interest in the space exploration program, to finance such projects. In fact from strategic point of view an international partnership in such projects gives scope for a better understanding amongst nations, which in turn helps in lessening the political rivalry and brings up the mutual trust, a prerequisite for world peace. Manned spaceflight provides more room for exploring the potentials of outer world, studying and analyzing the extraterrestrial activities etc. Manned spaceflights no doubt puts the life of the individual/s on great risk, but it is worthwhile here to mention that with the help of unmanned spaceflights we can only have a limited success in such explorations. Russian space traveler Yuri Garagin was the first one to go up there in 1961, but now American adventures have gone many steps ahead of Russia, thanks to the consistent efforts from the respective US governments. Mr. Steven Weinberg has been questioning the motives and utility of such space programs. The International Space Station (ISS) program in particular has come in the firing line, for not producing scientific results commensurate with the kind of investments (Prechtl and Whitesides, 2007). But, such are the risks with the scientific programs whatsoever. The research community is busy looking out a cure for AIDS, but so far they've not been able to come out with any credible cure for the disease. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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