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by Howie Firth - 15:28 on 13 May 2009
Space exploration has been criticised for burning up energy and investment that could be used to solve problems on the earth below. But, argues Howie Firth, the exploration of a new frontier can provide new technology that can save energy and assist research, as well as providing new inspiration for science and technology to meet our challenges.
by Howie Firth - 12:27 on 30 March 2009
Space exploration has slowed down since the forecasts of the visionaries more than half a century ago. Flights are few and costly, and programmes are planned over decades rather than years. It's now being seen that the use of ballistic rockets has taken us down the wrong track, and that rocketplane technology is the way to go. Innovative private companies are driving the change, with space tourism the first step in driving technology that could take us to the Moon and Mars.
by Howie Firth - 11:10 on 27 March 2009
Predictions of the 1950s and 60s about manned lunar landings were fulfilled ahead of schedule. But since then there seems to have been a slowdown in space exploration. Forecasts of moon bases and manned Mars landings seem to have receded into a distant future. Can the new space tourism industry revive the dream - and turn it into reality?