After learning that NASA might have plans to go back to the moon under the Trump administration, I was inspired to get to the root of whether this would be a good idea. The past three presidents have changed the agenda of space travel three different times which has proved troublesome in terms of budgeting and efficiency because this occurs every 4-8 years. So why should we change this agenda again and potentially set us back several years agains? Through research I hoped to find why the Moon should be our first goal at the moment.
Beginning my research I was looking for articles that expressed some of the advantages and disadvantages for both the moon and mars being our number one goal. Upon a simple google search I found two great articles from Space.com that brought these opposing views and helped me realize that both sides have some validity and that this topic is arguable for both sides. One specific worry of going back to the moon was that NASA would become, “sidetracked with years upon years of lunar exploration.” After all we would basically be discovering an entire planet from scratch.
One of the more interesting articles that I read and decided to use as my annotations was from National Geographic. This site gave six great reasons as to why we should build a moon base. These reasons were, to maintain US influence, pave way for other applications, to learn more about the moon, assess health impacts of living in space, to learn to build and operate a extraterrestrial base, and to set forth our goal of becoming an interplanetary species. You can find some further thoughts of mine at the site. The main point this article helped me come to was that Mars is still a great goal to reach for in the future but to ensure safety and efficiency I believe it would be smartest to use the Moon as a sort of stepping stone for our further exploration of space. I think it is fine for private companies to go for Mars but as a national agenda and for NASA we should focus on the Moon. One quote I really liked was, “If we ever want to build a colony on Mars, the first step may be to prove ourselves on the moon.” Like I said the moon must be a stepping stone to perfect our practices such as space-living and getting a reliable source of water and food. Once we prove ourselves on the moon, we will be ready for the real challenge, Mars.
Tags: mars moon Space Exploration space travel