NASA 60th: What’s Out There

NASA 60th: What’s Out There
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    -[Music]
    We are inquisitive. We want to understand things.
    We want to understand more about our place in the in the galaxy
    and more about our place, really, in the universe.
    [Music]
    NASA's always been the leader in space exploration.
    In fact, NASA's been the first agency to explore
    each and every one of the major bodies in the solar system.
    It used to be that we were completely bound to the surface of the Earth.
    Now we actually have spacecraft that have orbited Mercury and Venus.
    We've been around Jupiter and Saturn, all the way to the outer planets,
    all the way out to Pluto and beyond.
    Think about that, in 60 years, we went from just standing on the surface, underneath our atmosphere, looking up,
    to actually visiting these places.
    You know, human exploration is not Star Trek.
    It's not go where no human has gone before.
    Planetary scientists actually go first.
    They study the body. They study the environment. They look at the risks.
    They look at the resources.
    And then human exploration with that knowledge moves out,
    leaving low-earth orbit, going to the moon and then on to Mars.
    Obviously we want to take humans to Mars.
    Obviously, we want somebody walking on that surface.
    Our current missions are helping us understand more about Mars,
    are helping us understand how to create oxygen and helping us understand about
    the atmosphere and the wind, so that we can actually have a living life on Mars.
    The areas that we are most interested in, where we're putting most of our resources,
    are the areas where there is a potential for life.
    So, when you think about Enceladus, which is a moon of Saturn,
    and you think about Europa, which is a moon of Jupiter,
    these are water worlds.
    We're talking about entire oceans with ice shelves.
    And ultimately the question is, is it possible that we
    could find life on those worlds that are moons of other planets within our own solar system.
    Our job is to go look and use the tools that NASA has provided so
    that we can learn-- what's out there? How does everything work?
    The Sun, the Earth, the planets, the stars all of these things are space science for us.
    Galaxies are clouds of stars, hundreds of billions of stars, are going away from us
    with a speed proportional to distance. Well, what made that happen?
    You divide the speed into the distance you get the age of the universe.
    So, that was the first time we knew that you never had an age.
    Questions like -- where do we come from? and how did we get here?
    And the big one, Are we alone?
    As much as we've learned about the cosmos, there's still so much that we
    don't know and that's why NASA build telescopes to answer the big questions
    that we haven't been able to answer yet.
    We can do more than we've ever done
    before because of capabilities that exist today. So, the next 60 years, I think
    is just going to be an exponential growth of our knowledge and
    understanding, which is really what NASA was created for 1958.
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