字幕表 動画を再生する 英語字幕をプリント According to the 2016 fiscal year budget request, NASA wants 18.5 billion dollars. What would happen if we… I dunno. Doubled it? Hey space rangers, Trace here for DNews. NASA is owned by the people of the United States of America. If you pay taxes here, you're helping support space exploration. When NASA landed on the moon, we the people did that. The thing is, excepting the Space Race (which was during cold wartime), the U.S. has spent roughly the same amount on NASA every year, between one-half and 1 percent of the Federal budget. Currently, that's about 18 billion dollars. Americans spend 27 billion on pizza annually, for comparison, and 97 billion on alcohol. So, we got to thinking, what would NASA do if the government gave them a few billion extra bucks? Well, according to Jeff Matthews of the Space Frontier Foundation, a well-funded NASA could send more crew to the International Space Station, provide money for Commercial Spaceflight, boost deep-space human missions, and help us send a robotic mission to Europa. Because of the current budget, we don't even staff the ISS fully. Matthews wrote, "we are missing out on direct, near-term science," Meaning, there are more science proposals submitted then there are crew on the International Space Station to carry them out. If NASA's budget were doubled, or tripled, that would still leave it 10 billion less than the Department of Education, or 12 billion less than the intelligence budget. And as Micah Walter-Range of the Space Foundation wrote to DNews, if money were no object, NASA could "invest heavily in developing new technology…" They could, say, maintain the ISS after 2024 when it's slated to be abandoned AND fund the human spaceflight program -- right now it's either/or. It would be great to have both, as the ISS can provide more research and support as we venture into deep space. As Walter-Range wrote, "There's a huge need for more biological research if we are going to try to send people to live away from Earth. We may even need to do some tinkering with our physiology in order to survive in different levels of gravity." Unfortunately, a fully-funded NASA probably isn't in the cards. Previously cuts have reduced NASA's public outreach, the office dedicated to helping the American people understand what NASA is doing with tax dollars. And, in 2015, Congress cut the Earth science budget, the department that looks at the "the Earth as a whole system [to] understand how it is changing." Interestingly, "earth science" is where Climate Scientists get much of their data… Congress cut that budget... ? Huh. The Space Frontier Foundation's Policy Director Aaron Oesterle wrote to DNews that NASA is used as a "political football by various special interest groups… [meaning] people will cheer NASA on and support programs that could result in dead ends, when what is needed is a real discussion about goals and strategies." Instead, According to Matthews, a tripled budget could get a manned Mars landing in the late 2020s, sustained exploration, and "significant value for the American public and other beneficiaries of NASA." What beneficiaries? Glad you asked! Well, the taxpayers for one, but also private companies like SpaceX, Northrop Grumman, Boeing, Raytheon, Orbital ATK, Lockheed Martin, and dozens of others who are all contracted with NASA. Meaning, there's a real return on investment for these tax dollars. And yet, alas, NASA's next human mission to Mars, and the new rocket that will take us there are both "slated for significant cuts under the proposed" budget for 2017. Look, as Dr. Tyson says, NASA costs Americans half a penny per tax dollar. That fraction of a dollar bill is not enough from the edge to reach the ink. Increases like this could restore and boost standard missions like weather, atmospheric and earth sciences, while accelerating and securing contracts for new launch systems, human and biological study, as well as robotic and human-based missions to the edges of our imagination. Wouldn't that be awesome? Yeah, it would. Sponsorship? If you're as into space as we are at Discovery then make sure you tell your phone to remind you about global premiere of Telescope, Saturday, Feb 20th at 9/8c on Discovery channel. If you're thinking, all this sounds great, but what would all this do for me? Guess what. A lot. Check this video here for all the ways space exploration has benefited you, right now. Special thanks to both the Space Frontier Foundation and the Space Foundation for their help with this story! How much money would you give NASA? What would you fund? Let us know in the comments!