With the passion for manned spaceflight in continual flux, with the Hubble’s replacement in danger of outright cancellation, and decreasing budgets for even robotic or orbital missions, it would be all too easy to become discouraged by space program withdrawal.
The most powerful thing we can do is spread the word. Tweet! And tweet some more! Put space articles on your Facebook wall. Support projects that invite the public to join their efforts, such as NASA studies or organizations like SPACEHACK, the directory of ways to participate in Space Exploration.
In the coming era, it may very well be all the work we do on the GROUND that gets us more fully into space again, so make an effort as SpaceTweeps to support the projects that support the space program! Through their growth, we spread the word and find strength in numbers. Congress can’t ignore this forever.
Some listings are competitions for prizes, others pay actual wages; some are for students and/or entire classrooms as projects, others for amateur and professional astronomers… and still others are simply ways to gather information to contribute to scientific research.
The highest paying gig in there are the NASA bedrest studies, aka the Flight Analog Program. They develop 2-3 new Spaceflight Simulations per year, requiring people to visit a special NASA facility and … well, pretty much lie around while getting paid $160 per day most of the time! No joke. Although – one of the newer programs is a bit more strenuous than usual, as they are testing a version of the Space Station’s “Colbert” treadmill…
Also check out some articles about how NASA programs help real world citizens, such as the rehab facility now offering NASA-developed anti-gravity treadmill for therapy. The ultimate spinoff! Space station exercise? Now also a medical tool for healing and/or physical conditioning.