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Int. Academy of Astronautics Home European Space Agency

I believe that space activities are impacting society through…
....... their potential of influencing the attitude of people in front of the relevance they give to the expectations they have of the future.

Today, Society is almost everywhere largely dominated by the attention to the Contingent Problems; the focus of the interests and as a consequence the endeavors are concentrated on the Very Short Times.

Significant is the fact that very few Initiatives Worldwide, in whatsoever field, are today in progress, or are planned, that require commitments and efforts lasting over a generation life or even over a decade.

The lack of Visions penalizes the prospective of growth and evolution of Humankind and contributes to spread out a sense of instability and concerns about the future.

Standing such a situation, Space Activities, in addition to continue to provide a variety of useful services in the application fields, such as Telecommunication, Earth Observation, Meteorology Navigation and Defense, that have contributed to increase the standard of living, have the potential to support an “Opinion Movement” opening to the raise of interests projected into the future and capable of opening new horizons.

By fixing objectives far looking and of large opening, such as the Exploration and Development of Space beyond the Near Earth Orbits, targeted to the Moon, the Planet Mars and other bodies of the Solar Systems, the prospective of people, in particular of the young generations, might be directed towards longer times goals.

In a World that is today characterized by a continuous progress that in many cases happens as a result of efforts that are not easily identifiable by people and are happening not under their eyes, the Space Exploration Enterprises possess an unique appeal to be globally evident, easy perceivable and largely involving, especially when Human are brought into action.

Relevant benefits can be derived for the Tomorrow Society from several other activities, but which other Initiatives are in the position to create the expectations of challenging ventures in which everybody can identify himself, as it happens in the case of the Space ones?

Exploration Space Activities are in the position to provide all of us a magnificent gift, they can indeed revitalize the latent spirit of discovery, of search and of enlargement of the boundaries of the environment in which we live.

Exploration and Development Enterprises, if judged only according to Cost / Benefit parameters, would never be undertaken; it is necessary to develop a cultural framework that provides recognition of values of nature different from the economical one.

In assessing the Benefits of Initiatives that mainly enhance factors of imponderable nature, different meters of judgment have to be adopted with the consciousness to evaluate situations and take decisions on the basis only of their intrinsic merits, without attempting to value the “fall outs” that surely will derive in the years to come.

The Exploration and Development of Space are Investments for the Future Generations that we have to make people understand, accept and support.

Today we have to move forward, going there where we can go, one day the sons of our sons will go further ahead and move the frontiers beyond, and so on for the generation to come.

Prof. Ernesto Vallerani
Past President
AIDAA (Associazione Italiana di Aeronautica e Astronautica)


 
Professional Category: Engineering

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