In 1962, the United States President, John F. Kennedy, spoke at Rice University in Houston, Texas. Kennedy promised to put an American on the moon by the end of the 1960s. (The History) On June 16, 1969 Kennedys dream promise was kept. The United States placed two men on the surface of the moon.
(Apollo 11) By the year 2001, a few months short of 32 years later, no other body has had humans as guests. Why not? The vast wealth of knowledge which could be gained by a manned exploration of Mars is probably one of the better reasons to go. By further exploration of Mars the field of Comparative Planetology could be expanded. One of the procedures which could be performed my explorers sent to Mars is drilling samples out of the Martian ice caps.
This process is done on Earth in order to get a climatic history. This information would be extremely useful when looking at Mars. We would finally know why the water which once rushed over Mars and created the great cannels of Mars have become frozen. Other important information which could be found on Mars deals with the vulcanism. We could more easily study to see when and why vulcanism ceased on Mars.
(Collins 84) Opponents argue that this would just be all too costly. They claim that the money could not be found for such a venture.(Easterbrook 91) Well In answer to the money problem one comes to a totally new point, the economy. This spending of money would not break the United States government, it would stimulate the United States Industrial fields. The money spent on a Mars mission would not merely be spent in space, it would be spent in the United States.
All of the money spent here would also push the United States industries to make better products. The companies would be pushed to create such dependable products in fields such as aerospace and avionics. Of course we would see the same effects seen after NASAs crowing achievement, putting humans on the moon, after putting humans on Mars. These effects are the expansion of the technologies used to reach into different fields. Such as medicine, many of the advances in medicine since 1973 can be attributed to the space program.
Mainly through the work done in computers, electronics, thermal control, computational fluid dynamics and etc.. Robots have been the explorers of Mars. We have now seen that robots have become ineffective. Such as the case with the Mars polar lander.
A software problem caused breaking systems to shut down early. (Mars Failures) By putting a human at the controls such a software problem could be overridden. The use of such robotic probes are used to learn as much as possible without actually sending humans. This should be the main focus of the probes being sent. (National Space Society 61) We have learned from that mistake also.
Apollo 11. Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 2000. Microsoft Software. Collins, Michael. The US Should Explore Mars Space Exploration: Opposing Viewpoints. Bender, Leone, and Cozic, Eds.
San Diego: Greenhaven Press 1992. Easterbrook, Gregg The US Should Not Explore Mars Space Exploration: Opposing Viewpoints. Bender, Leone, and Cozic, Eds. San Diego: Greenhaven Press 1992.
Mars Failures Down to Cash. BBC News [online] Available: http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/sci/tech/newsid 693000/693 033.stm March 29, 2000 National Space Society The US Must Pursue Manned Space Exploration Space Exploration: Opposing Viewpoints. Bender, Leone, and Cozic, Eds. San Diego: Greenhaven Press 1992. Roland, Alex The US Must Not Pursue Manned Space Exploration Space Exploration: Opposing Viewpoints. Bender, Leone, and Cozic, Eds.
San Diego: Greenhaven Press 1992. The History Place- Great Speeches Collection. History Place [online] Available: http://www.historyplace.com/speeches/jfk- space.htm December 12, 2000.