Is Space Exploration Worth the Cost?


Or we’re spending too much on pets…


No…“we” do not fly…our bodies ride within a pressurized aircraft.
Our bodies cannot survive at altitude without pressurization and supplemental oxygen.
In outer space we are at an even more disadvantage.

NASA lists five just on the face of the hazards…

Isolation and confinement
Distance from Earth
Gravity (or lack thereof)
Hostile/closed environments

The human body is not designed for deep space travel.

Or to quote Ming the Merciless

Pathetic earthlings. Hurling your bodies out into the void, without the slightest inkling of who or what is out here. If you had known anything about the true nature of the universe, anything at all, you would’ve hidden from it in terror.



Maybe. Just maybe. We can create a protective craft of sorts to shield us from radiation and lack of gravity, etc. much in the same way we did with aircraft.


It kind of shocks me at times hearing of the incredible amount spent on space exploration when there’s so much suffering and poverty in the world.


Could be…science fiction literature has often been a self fulfilling prophesy.

Of course human nature being what it is humankind would probably tear ourselves apart before we reached such an achievement.

Or maybe, just maybe…this is the way God designed it.
Maybe he wanted us to give all our focus and attention and care onto this rarest of rare little blue and green marbles…


NASA’s budget is about 0.5% of the US budget, way less than entitlements and the military. One technology that comes to mind that might help those living in poverty is the research NASA has done into things like water recycling. On the ISS they generate water from humidity (mostly sweat and exhaled moisture), they recycle all of the urine, and many things more. Obviously the cost of this is way too much for wide usage, but we can learn from it. Keep in mind clean water is a major issue in impoverished nations.

Other than that I think efforts in space bring out part of our humanity, it expands who we are. One good example I can think of is the Apollo 8 Earth Rise photo, the first one ever taken.

Apollo Earth Rise

And the reading of the creation story they did at the sametime.

Apollo Creation Reading

This was done in the context of the height of the 60’s riots, protests, assassinations, Cold War tensions, profound changes in US society, and inter generational strife.


Because it’s our planet too? And it’s the only one we have? If your neighbor trashes the streets in your neighborhood do you not pick up after them for your own benefit until they learn better?


Absolutely worth the cost. We should be spending more on it quite frankly given the benefits the space programs have produced and continue to produce. This planet does not have the resources to sustain us indefinitely. Humanity’s long term survival depends on moving out into the stars to find new resources and new places to live to ease the burden on Earth.


I love space travel, our space stations, and probes we’ve sent out the explore. But I’ve never really understood the more resources argument. The only feasible places are the moon or a long trip to Mars. The thing is anything we’d make use of would have to be light and of high value since so much energy and resources are required to get back and forth. As far as a long term colony, I can imagine that after awhile social conflict will develop even among a well matched and professional crew. I can’t even imagine being stuck in the house with my spouse for years on end and we have a good marriage!


Iron rich asteroids are a big end game.


Here’s a thought-how about we quit researching ways to anihilate (sp?) each other? Those billions could really be useful in finding cures and better treatments for psychiatric and other diseases.


First one to quit is the first wiped out. Those who beat their swords into plow shares will plow for those who kept their swords.


Space weather turned out to be very worthwhile.

H3 can be collected and used as a new energy source.

We can learn a lot to our benefit from observations made out there.

Read up >>


Hasn’t panned our that way for countries like Costa Rica


Iron is not light nor is it rare on earth. There are no close asteroids in a regular orbit around the sun and those that come close are ones in a rouge orbit that will probably never return, certainly in our life times. I would not want to be working on such a thing. If you somehow managed to land one on earth most of it will burn up on entry and any relatively big one could spell the end of life as we know it on earth if something goes wrong. So, I’m not really sure where you are going with this comment.


I think he is talking about mining asteroids.


Umm…that’s not always a bad thing. It ended Nazi Germany, Mussolini’s Italy, Napoleon’s rampage through Europe, Britain simply lost territory, from the US revolution, the US Civil War ended slavery in the US. Sometimes those who need to lose for the betterment of humanity do.


Yes, I know, and that is what I was rebutting to.


We would have to travel to the outer ring of our solar system, but that might cost more than any thing we could profit from doing so.


There is a lot of interest in titan (if I’m not mistaken; one of Jupiter’s moons) because there may be a sea of water under the surface. Edit: ocean of liquid methane.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit