Host Scott Bakula (of Star Trek and Quantum Leap) shows how competition drives innovation - even in space exploration. In the 1960s, the intense rivalry between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. fueled the Space Race, culminating in Neil Armstrong's "giant leap" in 1969. The near future seemed to hold great promise for commercial space flight and space tourism. But in the intervening years, NASA's accomplishments have been underwhelming.
Now, the most exciting innovations are found in the private sector, where the Ansari X-Prize contest inspired enterprising teams to race toward the goal of developing a cost-efficient, reusable space craft. The X-Prize was modeled after a similar prize that helped launch the commercial aviation industry - a $25,000 prize won by American Charles Lindbergh with his famous 33-hour solo flight from New York to Paris in 1927.
Today, the budding private space tourism industry is attracting entrepreneurs, investors, and would-be adventurers who hope to be among the first private space travelers. Thanks to the power of competition, the dream of safe, affordable space flight may be realized in the not-too-distant future.
Everyone's Space covers numerous educational standards across several subject areas including ELL, Language Arts, Media/Technology, and Social Studies for Grades 7-12. To find which standards it covers specific to your grade, subject area, and which standards your district is using, use our Standards Alignment tool.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Sputnik, with a diameter of approximately 23 in (58 cm), was actually more than twice the size of a basketball, which has a diameter of 9.5 – 9.8 in (24.1 – 25 cm). We apologize for the error.
I love how the videos are on current topics that are connected to my curriculum. I especially appreciate that I could connect this to my engineering/technology curriculum!
Cynthia Gould Science - 6 Skyview Middle School, Leominster, MA
This video really sparked an excellent discussion about the development of technology. My students were actually putting thought into their comments at the end of this video, unlike so many others I have shown them.
Jacqueline Aleshire Science - 11,12 Scott High School, Madison, WV
Quite a few of the students recognized Mr. Bakula from TV shows. I think that this recognition helped them take an interest in and stay focused on the video. Considering today's economy, this is a timely video to instill in our students the need for continuing education and innovation.
Robin Routh Science - 9,10 Southeast High School, Bradenton, FL