December 10, 2012 at 1:26 AM (astronomy topics, curious research, current news, extraterrestrial studies, historic review, human life issues, late night studies, political atmosphere, public debate, science and technology, social opinion, web gossip)
I had completed my afternoon tasks, so I sat down for a regular browsing of The Internet. This lead me to explore some of my favorite astronomy-related sites. The details of the site nudged me to review some of the sites where questions could be submitted to the “professionals” available for answering. Well, everyone admittedly is not a professional, yet most of the browsers are regular students of the topic presented.
It was at this webpage where the question was asked, “Can humans ever reach The Andromeda Galaxy”. Everyone is not a science student, and curious minds probably want to know if there is a legitimate answer to that question. There actually were some truly significant and respectable answers that were submitted to the inquiry.
The immediate answer is no! Andromeda Galaxy, M31, is a little more than 2.5 million light years from Earth! One light year is somewhere around 5, 878, 000, 000, 000 miles. You take that big number, then multiply it by 2.5 million (another big number…) and you conclude with a practically insane answer! No, human beings will not be going to Andromeda Galaxy.
No one could survive the journey! It would require generations of human beings to be dedicated to an extremely dangerous trip across the cosmos, ultimately ending with many of them having no true comprehension of Earth (..and many of them dead). Besides, there is no immediate point to such a trip. We have not even recognized all that is within our own Milky Way. We still are getting a basic understanding of our own solar system. We have not even been back to our own friggin’ moon in forty years!
Speaking of which, it is time to celebrate an anniversary! The last human landing upon our moon was December 11, 1972. Tuesday will mark forty years! WOW! I am not sure what all it was that ultimately culminated in the ending of the space program. Certainly, it involved budget issues, politics, social opinion, and all of the what-not. Yet, there had to be, should be enough interest in the topic of our eventual expansion to our moon that the notion of renovating and reactivating the space program needs to be on the list of to-dos at least within the next twenty years! Maybe???
Also, there is news about planned endeavors set by The Golden Spike Company. This is a privately-based company out of The United States. It has intentions to make sales for private missions to our moon at a cost of $1.5 billion per voyage! The chief executive officer of this company, Mr. Alan Stern, calls his company’s travel package “a relative bargain”! This cost for a two-person trip to The Moon is supposed to be equivalent to the cost of unmanned robotic missions. I suppose that offers a bit of validity to Stern’s proposal, as an actual human being upon our moon certainly would provide more connection and insight to the status of our natural satellite than would mechanical observations from continued probings by machines.
It does not hurt to dream! Getting more knowledge about The Moon likely is necessary before any planned efforts occur for humanity to extend into other areas of outer space. I do have to believe that the majority of us really want to know just what is out there! There is so much to see, so much to learn, about a universe of which we have just an edge-level understanding. Yet, it would seem that the first priority, regarding such a proposal, would be to learn all that we can about our home, our corner of the cosmos, before we would try travelling into someone else’s yard. Oh, and if you wait about four billion years, Andromeda will be here at our doorstep!
SEE THESE SITES!!!