It was sad to read that the Bush administration has decided it has other priorities more important than to maintain the Hubble telescope.
This must be the most celebrated telescope among international astronomers and has provided many staggering images and valuable data to aid our understanding of the universe over many years.
I only hope that our government and its European counterparts can continue to commit budget and resources to important organisations such as the European Space Agency and encourage ESA to maintain its focus on science. ESA has had many successful missions recently, including the XMM-Newton, Envisat and Rosetta. It would be a shame if the work in
More national policy and investment is required if recognition of ESA’s contributions to space research is to develop in the 21st century. The
Space exploration is a complex and difficult undertaking, and these difficulties should inspire us — setbacks must be endured for they make the final discoveries even more worthwhile.
Space provides a challenge and inspiration to a new generation of academics, and without it industry will not be able to persuade the brightest graduates that a career in leading-edge technology can be more rewarding than one in banking or management consultancy. Inspiring future generations is as important as finding the answers to the origins of the universe.