Since people understand how much money is

Since the first artificial satellite was launched into space on October
4th 1957, space exploration has increased curiosity in many people’s minds.Does life in space exist? Are there
aliens? Space exploration is the discovery of structures/planets in
outer space.Supporters believe that space exploration is necessary for our
generation as it allows us to advance in life through means of improved
technology and materials for building structures. However, others believe that
the money and time spentcan be used on more important factors such as education and health. Millions
have already been invested into space explorations with countries such as China
and the United States of America being the main sources 1}showing
interest.

Monica Grady, a professor of planetary and space sciences at The Open
University, has given her opinion on the topic and strongly believes that all
the money provided for space explorations are worth every penny. In the article
she explains what the money goes towards and how it is used wisely and
efficiently.

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The main point she puts forward is this,’the millions of dollars do not go up in smoke:
they are used to pay for jobs and services’. She suggests that there are many
jobs associated with space explorations and that not many people understand how
much money is put towards the workers’ salary. In her research, shelooks into what jobs are linked to
space explorations. ‘The community engaged with the space industry includes specialist
scientists and engineers, designers, graphic artists and IT professionals, as
well as a vast support system: HR, catering and cleaning’.

Another source is national
priorities’ article on the federal spending of the United States of America. In
this article, it states that the USA’s total federal spending in 2015 was $3.8
trillion. NASA, an independent agency of the USA responsible for aerospace
research spend $18.4 billion for their scientific workwhich only equates to
0.5% of the total federal spending. This shows how the money used for space
research in the United States of America is very little compared to their
overall budget. This is also a similar case for other countries. The government
spending for the UK from 2016-2017 was £772 billion but the UK space agency
only spend around £371 million for their research which only equates to around
0.04% of the total government spending. So maybe various countries do not gain
as much money as we thought.

Monica Grady also
uses several examples in her article to explain how space exploration benefits
our planet. She states that ‘the
armada of satellites orbiting the Earth that, among many other things, beam
information to satellite navigation systems, broadcast television programmes
and monitor the weather are part of a global space network. Where would we be
now if we didn’t have the internet?’ She claims that space exploration provides
us with the most important things such as television programs and weather
forecasts.

Overall, Monica Grady’s argument is coherent and reasonable. The argument is
strong because of the fact that
Monica has experience and a good understanding on the topic, having spent most
of her life being a professor at The Open University. Her argument, however,
does contain some flaws. Most of her research is based on her own knowledge. This can introduce
biased information as the article has not been peer reviewed which in turn,
reduces the reliability of her evidence. In addition, Monica Grady does not
have statistical information. For example, she lists the number of jobs that
space exploration has links to, but does not specify how much money goes towards the workers. +Her main
point was that millions go
towards jobs and services in the space industry but her failure to include
statistical information about how much is actually given to workers results in
her evidence to not be as reliable as aforementioned. However, on the whole,
her viewsabout how the
money is used in space research are corroborated by statistics from another source and her expertise
in this topic, giving her argument credibility.

Many countries invest money into space activities. A large number of
satellites are launched into space by countries such as the United States,
India, Holland, United Arab Emirates and the UK.On the other hand,
there are multiple groups that want to reduce the amount of money that is
funded towards space explorations. Amitai Etzioni, is a sociologist, has given
his own explanation about how there are more urgent issues that need to be
addressed such as the oceans around the world and that the money used for space
explorations is ‘wasted’. His article mainly focuses on space missions that
include Mars. Many countries have planned space missions to Mars as they think
that it may be an alternative planet where humans can live. Japan, USA, UK,
Russia and India are some of these countries. However, there has not been enough evidence that life on Mars
exists and because of this, many people are debating if the space
missions to this planet have all been a waste of valuable time and money.

Amitai suggests that space exploration can still occur but at a reduced
price. His main point that
justifies this statement is ‘the main costs
of space exploration arise from the fact that we are set on sending humans,
rather than robots’. Why robots? Well Amitai suggests that the reason why space
exploration is at such a high cost is because humans require much more
assistance than robots. Amitai explains how humans need to come back to earth
so transportation is needed and this is not cheap. The average cost of a rocket
launch to space equates to around $1.5 billion and it is very similar for a
return trip as well. Furthermore, he states that space vehicles must be safe
for humans but we can risk a few robots without worrying. Robots can also do
many, maybe even all, tasks that humans can do.In the article British
astronomer, royal Martin Rees says ‘I think that the practical case (for manned
flights) gets weaker and weaker with every advance in robotics and
miniaturization. It’s hard to see any particular reason or purpose in going
back to the moon or indeed sending people into space at all’. This quotation suggests
that we are wasting money by sending humans into space and that we need to
adjust our plan and start sending out robots instead.

Amitai also
includes a small section about Steven Weinberg, a NobelPrize winner in physics.Steven
calls manned missions’an incredible waste of
money’ and argues that ‘for the cost of putting a few people on a very limited
set of locations on Mars we could have dozens of unmanned, robotic missions
roving all over Mars’. This quotation suggests that space exploration is a
waste of money as of now but he is also stating that countries can use their
money more efficiently if they allow robots rather than humans to enter space.
This would then allow many people to adjust their perspective on the matter and
realise that space exploration may not be a waste of money.

All of these people’s opinions on how money is wasted in
space explorationsare supported by other sources such as an article written by
Professor Andrew Dempster on The Ethics Centre. In this article he gives
examples of counter arguments such as ‘countries, especially developing ones like India, are going to space for the “wrong”
reasons’. If this is true, then the money India has spent for their space
missions may not have been well spent.

On the whole, Amitai’s argument seems to
be plausible. This is because it includes different viewpoints from different
people increasing its reliability. The article was also published on CNN, an
American news channel, which means that the information provided is fairly
accurate. He also exclaims that space exploration can still be efficient if the
money is used wisely. This elucidates how he is not biased and is neutral about
the situation. However, the argument has a number of flaws which damage its
credibility. Firstly, there is no real evidence that robots are cheaper to
maintain in space compared to humans. This is because there is no statistical
information to justify this point. Amitai Etzioni is also a sociologist,
someone who studies the society and social behaviour, resulting in him having
no real experience in this topic further reducing the reliability of his
article.

Ron Garan, a fighter pilot and
astronaut, wrote an article explaining how space exploration can benefit the
planet by helping solve problems in developing countries. He strongly believes
that space exploration is vital as it allows us to interact with new things and
it also helps people overcome challenging situations.

Ron Garan starts to list several
examples where space exploration has helped the world. ‘For example, space
based science offers an environment to foster new materials, better medicines,
improved methods to provide clean water, and better ways to grow enough food to
feed our increasing global population’. Ron Garan goes on to say that the
situation is like a “Two-Way Technology Transfer” implying that the research
conducted by space explorations can be used in some way on earth. For example, ‘NASA
created a solar powered refrigerator and it has been approved by the world
health organisation to provide cooling for vaccines in developing countries’.
This is a direct result of NASA’s two-way technology transfer. Ron also states
that ‘NASA engineers give their
expertise and spare time to apply space program technology to problems facing
the developing world. In doing so, they learn valuable lessons’. This shows the
beneficial aspects of research and that we should not complain about the money
being funded towards it.

Overall, Ron Garan’s argument seems to
be accurate and concise. He is also a qualified astronaut and has worked with
NASA and this highlights his expertise in space exploration as he has
experienced it himself. However, because he has a connection with NASA, his
views may be biased and this results in the reliability of the source to
reduce. In addition, he does not give any points against space exploration
which shows the reader that he does not have an opposing view. This in turn
reduces the credibility of this source.