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Human desire to explore universe not about money

Published 08/10/2015

I feel very sorry for people like Sue Thomas (Write Back, October 5) who have so little sense of adventure that they cannot see the vast potential of scientific discoveries like running water on Mars or, no doubt, the mysterious mountains and glaciers on distant Pluto.

A desire to explore and to find answers to the mysteries of the universe is hardwired into our human DNA.

Ultimately, it is what sets us above the other life-forms on planet Earth.

It is that yearning for answers which put Neil Armstrong on the Moon and which, in time, will also produce cures for the debilitating diseases mentioned by Ms Thomas.

The human need to explore transcends balance sheets and budgets.

But if Ms Thomas wants to reduce it all to monetary terms, America's Project Apollo caused the greatest peacetime explosion in technological development, which still impacts on almost every aspect of our lives.

It has been estimated that every dollar spent on putting men on the Moon produced a return of $5-$7 in the form of new products, processes and industries.

Just imagine how much more our lives could be enriched (in every sense) by following our evolutionary instincts to Mars and beyond.

GEOFFREY BOWMAN

Belfast

Belfast Telegraph

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