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Uranus 2049: Why is this such an important mission?
Looking at the significance of the Uranus 2049 NASA mission. Why do we need to go to this foreign planet, how will we get there and what will we discover?
Uranus, the seventh planet. We don’t know much about it yet in relative terms, but that’s pretty much to be expected considering that it is some 3.1 billion km away from us here on Earth.
But that could all be about to change in a quarter of a century as NASA launches one of its most ambitious and expensive projects to date, the $4.2 billion quest to the planet. With the information gathered there, they expect to uncover a number of secrets of the Universe, crucial to gaining further understanding of the way things work.
So there’s a lot more to it than finding out about the planet itself. While Uranus is fascinating, it holds a lot of truths that could really change the way we perceive life itself. An amazing prospect that surely justifies the enormous price tag the mission is going to hold.
A factor that people fail to realize when considering the cost of the space program is the technological advancements that come from it. There's a tendency to think that space agencies only send rockets into space to see what happens, but there have been a lot of technological breakthroughs that we use in our everyday lives that have come as the result of money invested in space programs.
The biggest example of this is computer technology. Back in 1969 when we put a man on the moon, computers took up whole rooms, and now you have a computer that can fit in the palm of your hand that's a million times more advanced than what NASA was using back then. These programs were instrumental in making computers small enough to fit inside a rocket to help control it, and how we use that same technology to message each other, catch up on the world's news, and perhaps even relax by playing some online casino games.
If you're a fan of space technology, there are some great space-themed slots for you to play! The epic Starburst by NetEnt and Space Race by Play ‘n GO are just two of many you can enjoy, and potentially win a bit of cash as well. You’ll just need to make sure you find the right place to play, and reading a Jackpot City review is a good place to start. It has a huge amount of slot games to play (including a number of space-themed ones) as well as epic welcome bonuses for new players, keeping you entertained until the next NASA project kicks off.
In the meantime, let’s give you something to think about as we break down the Uranus 2049 mission. Stay tuned.
When is it going to happen?
The mission itself is set to begin in the early 2030s with a view to competition in 2045 but potentially as late as 2049. Why so long? Because it’s going to take a heck of a long time to get there, as much as 15 years!
2045 would be pretty ideal for NASA as it would mean Jupiter is in the prime position to give the spacecraft a boost with its immense gravitational field. It would also mean getting there before southern Spring starts on the planet in 2049. Remember, a year on Uranus is 84 years here on Earth, so the seasons last a lot longer.
What can we expect to find out from the mission?
Through technology and innovation, NASA expects to be able to find out many things about the formation of the Solar System as a whole by visiting Uranus. Because it’s an ice giant planet, it was formed far differently from planets that are closer to the Sun.
Uranus also holds a strange magnetic field that could teach us more about the functionality of gravity. A key thing to know for improving the way we probe planets around the Solar System in years to come. There are also a number of moons around Uranus that can give us even more crucial information about the life of the planet.
It’s going to be an immensely difficult task such to the distance but NASA is confident it can pull it off in time. Of course, it’s going to need a huge amount of planning from some very smart people and a whole lot of money but for the information, it could yield, no price tag is too much for NASA and for the US government.
Last thoughts on Uranus 2049
We can’t wait to find out the answers to the questions NASA is hoping they can get when they visit Uranus. Of course, we’re going to need a lot of patience but it’s exciting to think that someday in the future, we’ll know a lot more about where we come from here on planet Earth.
Image 2: Image by Robert Sullivan on Flickr
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Any facts, figures or references stated here are made by the author & don't reflect the endorsement of iU at all times unless otherwise drafted by official staff at iU. This article was first published here on 22nd May 2022.