Less than a year ago I was privileged to be among those standing at Kennedy Space Center to witness the launch of STS-135 - the Shuttle Atlantis on her final voyage to the ISS. At the time there was a lot of pessimism about the future of space. But my brief time at NASA only refuelled my optimism for the space industry. Today’s launch of the SpaceX rocket gives proof to what I felt I had learned: That there is just too much opportunity out in space for it to be a closed chapter.
NASA’s shuttle program was old and stale because governments don’t like to take expensive risks. However, private industry was just waiting for the chance and if the glory of commercial egos wouldn’t entice them, the almighty dollar would.
I continue to be optimistic about mankind in space. Our grandchildren will probably not remark on May 22nd 2012 being anything special, but it’s worth taking a few minutes now to dream of what lies ahead.
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