The Importance Of Space Exploration

Words: 2001
Pages: 9

After the end of the Second World War, a period of political hostility appeared between the West and the East, called the Cold War (The Space). This period of political stagnation affected many different spheres of life. One of these spheres was science and more specifically astronomy which was now given a new ambitious task; conquering the space and more specifically the moon (The Space). This idea was not new since its beginning could be traced even back to Jules Verne (Lytkin). However, this idea was considered science fiction until the beginning of 20th century when we finally came to the realization that space exploration is possible (Lytkin). Furthermore, USA and USSR took the idea of space exploration to a completely new level by racing …show more content…
The first important factor that facilitated the space expeditions is the constant competition between the USSR and the USA (The Space). More specifically, we can see that in J. F. Kennedy speech that explain why USA should try to reach the moon: "Yet the vows of this Nation can only be fulfilled if we in this Nation are first, and, therefore, we intend to be first…" (Kennedy). It is interesting to note the emphasis that Kennedy puts on the word "first" because it shows the competitive spirit of the age. Moreover, even though he does not directly state that this competition is with the USSR, we can infer that from the mindset of that time. Therefore, in this quote we can see the real reason both the USSR and the USA invest in space exploration and that is to see who will be first on the moon so they can show their technological superiority. Another aspect of the Cold War that affected space exploration was the huge financial commitment that the USA and the USSR made to the cause (Lafleur). If we have to be more specific, according to an estimation made by the CIA the budget of the Soviet civil space program increased from 0.4 to 4.5 billion dollars in the period between 1960 and 1965 (US). Similar thing happened to the American space program whose budget increased from 0.6 to 5.4 billion dollars in the same period (US). Therefore, we can safely make the statement that space exploration was extremely costly at that time (Lafleur). Thus, if it were not for the competition between the two superpowers of the US and the Soviet Union, the countries would not have an incentive to spend that amount of fund for peaceful scientific exploration of space (Lafleur). Another way in which the Cold War affected space exploration by making one of the most outstanding missions from the Cold War possible. The