Some of the disadvantages of space travel include NASA spending money on projects when it is not aware how much commercial investment it can rely on, there are risks to human safety with each mission and certain orbits are very slow. In addition, changes to space travel funding may make it difficult for students to become astronauts.Continue Reading
Although NASA now partners with private firms for space travel funding, there is no guarantee that private companies can invest. While many show an interest, this may mean NASA begins working on projects which are then left without commercial funding. If only a small number of private firms show an investment, establishing contracts becomes inefficient. In addition, space travel is unsafe, with historic tragedies including the loss of Challenger in 1986 and Columbia in 2003. Further losses could be damaging in terms of human life and space travel's reputation, leading to restrictive regulations.
Logistically, some aspects of space travel are challenging. As ships can only carry limited amounts of fuel, they rely on planetary orbits and gravitational thrusts to complete missions. These transfers also limit the number of launches a ship can make. For example, the Earth-Mars transfer is only available once every 2 years, and the Earth-Jupiter transfer is available once every 13 months. Both are slow.
With the Federal government shifting space program funding to private sources, there are less opportunities for students to become astronauts. Usually they enter the program after a career in the airforce, but less federal funding means reduced chances of this happening.Learn more about Space Travel
NASA beams live and recorded video content into low-earth orbit, allowing astronauts to watch live video in outer space. A special broadband connection carries the video into space on an as-requested basis. Astronauts watch television and other content when they are not working.Full Answer >
There is no specific time for getting into outer space as it depends on the type of technology used in a mission, the destination and the position of the planets. Another factor to consider is the distance from Earth to the destination; for example, Mars is the second closest planet to Earth after Venus. However, the distance keeps changing as the planets rotate around the sun.Full Answer >
Typical orbital paths for space shuttle missions covered regions between 57 degrees north and 57 degrees south of the equator and altitudes of between 155 and 600 miles depending on the mission profile. Orbital speeds were on the order of 17,500 mph, resulting in one orbit approximately every 90 minutes.Full Answer >
The methods astronauts use to breathe in space depends on the mission, but they usually use either electrolysis of water or pressurized oxygen from tanks that is pumped into the atmosphere. Space suits and the interior of space craft are pressurized, allowing astronauts' lungs to function normally.Full Answer >