Oh shit it’s so annoying how short the answer box is. What I was going to type:
Michio Kaku has something to say about this! Although, I forget what, exactly.
According to Kurzweil’s Law of Accelerating Returns, we’ll have AI soon enough. So, even if we don’t make it out within the century, there may be a chance that our created intelligences will. If we can somehow experience such an exodus through them, that’d be marvelous enough for me.
Space History - I found this amazing chart on the MIT Technology Review site. It shows the number of space launches for each country over time, starting with the very first launch ever, to the end of the Space Shuttle era. One thing that immediately struck me was that the often mentioned “US leadership in space flight” people were so worried about losing when the Shuttle retired isn’t as self-evident as some would like to believe.
Actually, the list of nations on that chart is pretty long, and growing every year! Just as all nations share the responsibility of stewardship for planet Earth - and the consequences when any one of them fails in that responsibility - it will take all of humanity’s resources and efforts to make us a multi-planetary society. No matter what flag is on it (although personally I’d prefer it to be none at all), any spaceship that successfully claws its way out of Earth’s gravity is an accomplishment for all of us.
A representation of the evolution of the universe over 13.7 billion years. The far left depicts the earliest moment we can now probe, when a period of “inflation” produced a burst of exponential growth in the universe. (Size is depicted by the vertical extent of the grid in this graphic.) For the next several billion years, the expansion of the universe gradually slowed down as the matter in the universe pulled on itself via gravity. More recently, the expansion has begun to speed up again as the repulsive effects of dark energy have come to dominate the expansion of the universe. The afterglow light seen by WMAP was emitted about 380,000 years after inflation and has traversed the universe largely unimpeded since then. The conditions of earlier times are imprinted on this light; it also forms a backlight for later developments of the universe.
The Sagan Series (part 1) - NASA The Frontier Is Everywhere (by damewse)
“I got frustrated with NASA and made this video. NASA is the most fascinating, adventurous, epic institution ever devised by human beings, and their media sucks. Seriously. None of their brilliant scientists appear to know how to connect with the social media crowd, which is now more important than ever. In fact, NASA is an institution whose funding directly depends on how the public views them.”
Once it’s in place, though, the Webb [Space Telescope] is quite literally expected to unlock a universe of discoveries. Positioned so far from the Earth and shielded from outside infrared interference, the telescope will be able to see things the Hubble never could. Chief among them: seeing back in time. Since light only travels so fast, the further you look out, the further you look back. The Webb is expected to be able to peer into some of the universe’s earliest moments, before even stars existed. This could give insight into how the cosmos came into being.
On top of that, the Webb is going to be looking at how the first galaxies were formed. From observations from Hubble and other telescopes, we know know most galaxies have huge black holes at their centers, but questions remain about how this symbiotic pairing of black holes and stars emerges. The answer likely has to do with “dark matter,” the term for the missing matter in the universe that scientists can observe the gravitational effects of, but can’t see directly. By looking into the formation of galaxies, the Webb may unlock the secrets of this mysterious substance.
Finally, the Webb may help answer the question of whether life exists elsewhere in the universe. The telescope will be able to see better than ever before planets in other star systems and more importantly—which ones have water. A planet with large amounts of water is a prime candidate for life, and the Webb could point us right to them.
The inside view of a liquid hydrogen tank designed for the Space Shuttle external tank, viewed on February 1, 1977. At 154 feet long and more than 27 feet in diameter, the external tank is the largest component of the Space Shuttle, the structural backbone of the entire Shuttle system, and is the only part of the vehicle that is not reusable.