Steve (by text) asked:
Apart from the obvious military use of the moon, what is the point of space exploration?
Dominic - Well i guess it's driven a lot of technological advance in the last 30 yers or so. I mean the Apollo Missions certainly inspired people to create technology that they wouldnt have created otherwise.
Dave - And GPS is really useful and we've found out a lot about the Earth - you can send up satellites up to find out where the forests are - there's a huge amount you can find out about the Earth from space.
Chris - And on last week's show, my interview with Peter Quinn, who's in Australia - he's the Director of the institute they've set up to try and get the square kilometer array in Australia. He pointed out that wifi is entirely based in terms of its protocols on radio astronomy, and the world wide web - with CERN saying 'we're going to have all these big projects and we need ways for physicists to talk to each other' - that directly catalysed the development of html, the language that made the web possible. So i think there are all these other spin offs that we can thank the exlploration for.
Dave - Plus just finding out what's out there!
Q= how far out is space exploration economically viable.....from hindsight
There are two important branches for this question
Does humanity have reliable atomic clock for such travels? simplified, Thu, 20th Oct 2011
Why is it ' obvious ' that the moon be used for military use ? neilep, Thu, 20th Oct 2011
If a war broke out for control of the Moon we would have to quickly develop our space travel resources so that we could get involved. syhprum, Thu, 20th Oct 2011
You can never know where science can lead us. I can think of, or recall, the following reasons:
Probably on the moon the people brains better work , there optimum gravitation is. simplified, Thu, 20th Oct 2011
Maybe we can seed the universe :)
to finde another place for human beings. too many people now mao, Fri, 21st Oct 2011
I hope the moon won't be militarized, at least not with respect to terrestrial affairs. Assuming we do eventually colonize the moon, I suppose some defensive capabilities will be inevitable. And, there have been questions whether we need to build a defense from natural phenomenon from space. An alien invasion would seem unlikely.