Sunday, April 13, 2008

Federal government blocks sale of MDA space division

Another space news item, but much closer to home this time. MDA is one of Canada's big player in the space industry, best known for it's robotic achievements (think Canadarm & Dextre). While it is thought that there is still a one in three chance that the sale will go through, I'm happy to see that our government is trying to keep it from being bought by a US company. I have nothing against the American space program and companies, far from it, but this would mean a diminution in Canada's part in Space exploration and research and possibly a reduction in our contribution in general as a partner with other countries' important space programs.

The general public usually see the big expenses generated by space programs as wasteful and that the money should go to other projects, such as Education, Health and other public programs. While these are very important, space exploration did contribute to these programs and to many of today's everyday technology, objects and services. Also, in the longer terms, human space travel will be very important to our specie's survival. Right now, all humans are on Earth (or in very close orbit around it). If some big disaster were to happen, we could go the way of the dinosaurs and simply cease to exist... Of course, there would be no one left to claim "See? What did we tell you?" and no one to be proven wrong.