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tv   Real Money With Ali Velshi  Al Jazeera  November 27, 2014 7:00pm-8:01pm EST

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international space station, and on the menu? smoked turkey and freeze-dried green deans. and thermo stabilized cherry, blueberry cobblers. "real money with ali velshi" is next. ♪ the business of space, a new age is dawning for space exploration, a new commercial space age. >> we're democratizing space. it's about you and me, not just some massive government program. >> private american companies racing to advance the technology that will challenge our concept of space. they call it a new frontier.
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>> i believe that it's on the frontier that we advance our technology. it's on the front tier that we advance as a species. >> billion airs and start ups alike see it as a future. >> we believe a hunk of the moon you could hold in your hands could be worth billions of dollars. >> there is another place for us as people to be able to thrive and develop and grow. >> and to make billions even trillions in the process. >> there will be losses of money, business plans will fail. >> it's a high-stakes investment with no guarantees. and when the absolute worse-case scenario becomes reality. >> tell us how you felt when you
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heard yesterday? >> gutted. >> this is the business of space. ♪ >> 2014 has been a tough year for america's commercial space industry. in october, a private craft delivering cargo to the international space station exploded at launch. that same week a west flight of virgin galactic went terribly wrong. but commercial space explore race has grown into a $314 billion industry. and that could double by 2030. no matter the risks, there is no shortage of seed money rushing in to fund this new private push into space. since 2003, investors have put in $2.5 billion.
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the rewards of success could be even higher than the risks. once upon a time the united states government lead the race into space. we remember nasa taking man to the moon and beyond. today the u.s. is still at the head this time as the epicenter of a new commercial space industry. and one day tourists could board fights that actually take them into space. it's a question too tempting for some venture capitalists to ignore. what is the return of investment on a whole new world? >> rockets and spaceships, satellites and asteroid miners. moon landers and space ports, and even 3-d printers. space is the new frontier for innovation. >> space is about two things, exploration, and how you go and exploit it and profit off of it. >> many in the last four years
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the u.s. commercial space industry has experienced a major boom. global government spending on space is decreasing as the commercial sector grows. of the $314 billion global space industry, the united states spends $74 billion on space. around $17 billion of that goes to nasa. $122 billion is made up of commercial space products. and $117 billion goes to space infrastructure, building spacecraft, launch pads, rockets, insurance, and research and development. the american space industry got a boost on april 15th, 2010. >> we are work with a growing array of private companies. >> that's when president obama promised nasa $6 billion over the next five years to seed
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private space companies. >> that opened up a lot of opportunity for clever ambitious people, business people who thought they could do things cheaper or faster. >> nasa spent about $2.5 billion of that money by the end of 2014. >> almost every private space company that you look at right now, is in some way benefits from nasa. >> nasa has pumped an additional $7 billion with two companies to build spaceships that will take american astronauts to the space station. >> we can imagine these partnerships extending to other locations in the solar system. we're starting to understand the model which we can expacked our economy into space. >> nasa has also spent billions on contracts with two other countries to launch cargo to the space station. >> they are really engaging the
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private sector, the schedule and cost discipline of the private sector, and also the reliability. >> but it doesn't always work. space ex's competitor, had a massive sethback in october. orbital science's rocket exploded seconds after impact with 5,000 pounds of cargo set for the space station. and we were there that night, cameras rolling. the explosion rang out like a sonic boom that ricochetted out there virginia. the week of october 27th, 2014, brought a one-two punch to the commercial space industry when the rocket exploded and virgin galactic suffered the lost of a
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space pilot and shuttle. but the impetus is also exploration. most entrepreneurs have a united vision that was once relegated to space age cartoons. >> i am 100% certain that everybody will have the chance to go to space. it seems far off and expensive, but the same thing happened with aviation. >> just as aviation was expensive hah unreliable in its infancy, so too is the commercial space industry. the biggest hurdle of all? reducing the cost of launch. the cheapest option is space-x's rocket, costs half the cost of its competitors. >> we use essentially the same
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technology that sputnik was launched on. >> but it uses a reusable rocket. it could dramatically reduce launch costs. >> i don't see the way the commercial space sector is developing is necessarily going to provide a decent return on investment. >> linda billings sites ronald reagan's state of the union address in 1984. >> in the zero gravity of space, we could manufacture in 30 days life-saving medicines that would take 30 years to make on earth. >> there are a number of possibilities that people were promising that would be wildly successful and hugely profitable, and many have not come to pass. >> but americans got to the moon with less technology than is in
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a typical iphone. >> we almost wear more computers than what we had to enable us to get to the moon. >> and now the sky so to speak is no longer the limit. nasa has invested almost $2.5 billion of the government money, and will dedicate billions more in the coming few years. but don't think that nasa is getting out of space exploration. we're joined by nasa's director of commercial space flight. he decides how all of those billions of nasa dollars will be invested in commercial space industries. thank you for being with us. you are taking a bit of exception with the way i set this up. i know you don't think this is a new space economy. you think it is a space economy that has been around for some time, so why does it seem new to so many people? >> well, we're seeing an expansion of space activity
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recently. primarily because the cost of access to space has come down. there has been more activity in the orbit and commercial space primarily through wealthy individuals getting into the space business and trying new business plans. we have sort of seen this all along throughout the space industry. people trying to make a profit. but recently there definitely has been an expansion. >> and part of this, of course is that we don't have a shuttle program anymore. so all eyes tend to be on non-nasa stuff even though nasa still has its finger in everything. >> yes, we are still very busy. the things we are doing may not be as visible as they were before. and now that we have gotten to the point where low earth orbit operations have been become slightly more of a routine. it is realistic for us to think of the private sector taking
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more responsible on that area. >> was that always the plan? we really didn't think about that in the '70s and '80s, that it is not a government function. what changed? >> you know, i think people always dreamed about economic activity in low-earth orbit and even beyond from the beginning of space age, but it only became more realistic i think recently when the cost of access has come down. then you can start to see business plans start to close. innovation starts to emerge. entrepreneurs enter the scene. so it was a confluence of events. it has gotten to be more realistic for the commercial sector to do more. >> is there a combination between a mission driven nasa
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and the private sector companies, as you are funding them, do you run into problems when you are dealing with the richest of the rich, and great dreamers, but they don't do things the way a government did. >> i don't see a conflict at all. every group brings something special to the table, and by partnering in this way, we have seen a sinner gistic approach. nasa which is steeped in human space flight, combining that with this innovation with the entrepreneurial sector, we are finding we can do a lot more with a lot less. and in fact it's interdependent. nasa still has its sites on going to an asteroid and to mars one day. and in order to do that, we have to make things more cost effective. and by turning these things over
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to the private sector that is making the programs more effective. >> thank you very much. nasa wants american spaceations to take astronauts to the space station and beyond. but after the virgin galactic crash, will this industry survive? >> it's a horrible day for virgin galactic and space travel. >> we were one of the first to gain access to the space port f after that crash. you are watching a special edition of "real money," the business of space.
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♪ welcome back to the business of space. i'm ali velshi. since 2003, over $2.5 billion have been pumped into developing commercial space flight. the idea is driving the space tourism industry, but recently we got a stark reminder of the risk. we were on the ground just days after the fatal crash. the tone at the space port, somber, on edge. security was extra tight. at one point asking us to leave. but we are here at the invitation of the ceo of the space port.
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>> you hear that noise? that's a rocket motor being tested. >> this is roughly equivalent to the silicon valley of commercial space. it's where dozens of companies have chosen to develop their space businesses. they aren't strangers to risk. >> i have been chief executive here for 11 years. one thing i can guarantee when i started is i don't know when the next mishap will occur, but i know it will occur. >> virgin gal lactic was the front runner to take paying passengers into orbit. but it was a very different narrative after the crash. branson was visibly shaken. >> reporter: how much of a setback is this?
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[ sighs ] >> um, it depends -- you know, as far as how much of a setback, it bepengd pengd -- depends on what the cause was. >> the crash sent ripples through the space industry especially for its competitors. >> space was not easy. if it was easy there was been a commercial spaceship company offering trips into space. >> the death rate for humans who have gone into space is about 4%. that's 18 of the 430 humans who have flown in space have died. only 2 out of 100 million passengers have died on commercial air flights in the last decade. as companies compete to get off of the ground, rusty says while tragic, death is inevitable.
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>> all of us who flew in apollo were very aware that we were in a risky business. you will have failures, and you will have people dying. that's the spice of advancing. >> but critics say that's exactly the problem. the price of advancing is too high. >> we want to build a spaceship that is 100% safe. >> and space companies are forced to cut corners in order to reduce cost. >> if you try to get to 100% of reliability those last few points cost you a lot of money. so at some point to contain the cost of development, you sacrifice a point or two of reliability and take the risk of accidents. >> but many in the industry say the private sector can build
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safe spaceships and will. >> the private sector can do things safely. we have setbacks every once and again, and sometimes people die, but that's okay, because that's what they have chosen to do. >> i want to introduce you to two men who know all about space flight and the risks involved. michael lopez is a former nasa astronaut and former president of the commercial space flight organization. gentlemen thank you so much for being with us. you heard richard branson saying the accident was a massive setback for virgin galactic. what kind of a setback are we talking about. obviously it wouldn't have been appropriate for him to say not that big of deal in the context. but how big of setback is it? >> for virgin it is a
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significant setback as a company. for the industry it's a little bit like the stock market, you have a downturn, and then it comes back up. for virgin it depends on openness and transparency, which to their credit they have been. they have been very clear about what they found so far. and it depends on how long it will take to make the fix. so i don't know they are out of it by any means. moments and days after the mishap, branson and others are visibly shaken, but i'm sure they are regrouping and moving forward. >> michael until the crash the understanding was until you actually took passengers into face. the federal aviation administration was going to keep its mitts off, unless there was a fatality. so they now have the right to move in. what do you think that means for the regulation of the commercial
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space flight industry? and whether it will slow it down? >> i think we are unique in that we have a very good relationship with the regulators, the faa office, but you are right. they now have the authority to impose regulation. it's a very long process to have to go through a series of public comments and things like that. and we have asked them not to regulate until we have enough data in which to base sound regulation. and now we have one data point. i think most people would say that's not enough to create a whole series of regulations, but it will be interesting to see how they proceed. >> virgin thought they would first be in space in 2007, but when you think back to game-changing technologies, back to the boeing 747, it was delayed a great deal. these advances, does it seem to be too much of a delay? >> no, i think it's perfectly in
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family. as richard branson said if it were easy, everybody would be doing it. people at the beginning are always optimistic, and problems arise in any development. so i don't think this is something to be terribly surprised by or worried about. we'll get there one day. >> leroy i described you as a space entrepreneur, and there's not necessarily big money in it all the time, but it might make the first trillionair in the world. >> i think around ten years ago you saw the companies coming up, and it was a little bit like the microcomputer storm when a lot of different companies sprung up. frankly speaking a lot of
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charlottetons, and that has been weeded out, and you have a few survivors and a new comers starting up as well. so i think this is here to stay. it's going to be a big deal. you heard richard branson in earlier interviews saying he felt that virgin galactic was going to be the biggest part of the virgin holings. >> genth mepranum thank you so much for taking your time out, they both flew on a challenger shuttle mission together. the new commercial space industry isn't just about space tourism. >> we believe a hunk of the moon you could hold in your hands could be worth a billion dollars. >> mining the moon is just two minutes away when the business of space continues. ♪
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♪ welcome back to the business of space. i'm ali velshi. this is an extraordinary time in history. the u.s. government is handing the reins to private companies to explore the moon. some say a trip to the moon isn't anymore complicated that planning an extended mission to antarctica. as jake ward reports two companies have a single focus, to get to the moon and make billions. ♪ >> reporter: moon express and astro bottic are competitors in a very small emerging market. >> we see the moon as the eighth continent of the world. >> we believe a hunk of the moon that you could hold in your hands could be worth a billion
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dollars. >> reporter: both companies are building unmanned spacecraft that could take cargo to the moon. >> payloads can mount above the deck and below the deck. things like rovers, science expe expeer -- experiments. we're like the local utility. >> reporter: moon express's spacecraft is smaller, and holds about 80 pounds. >> the design of our vehicle, our little spacecraft -- here it is right here. it's -- notice it's like a little flying saucer is. there is a payload deck. it can get all the way to the moons of mars. >> reporter: the -- ambition of both companies to launch
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facilities that can go even deeper in space. >> the moon is a stepping-stone to bigger and better things. mainly mars. we need to start with the moon. it's in our backyard. >> reporter: nasa announced that both companies will be a part of its lunar catalyst program. they will help develop the space program with one day making cargo to the moon. >> nasa is moving on to the frontier challenges like going to mars. but we also think and recognize that it is very important to continue our economic expansion of the lunar surface as well. >> the ultimate goal is to promote a competitive market, but there's another layer to the competition here. the $40 million google lunar x-price. $20 million for the 1 company to drive 500 meters on the moon and send back hd images in real
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time. they are competing for the prize along with 16 other companies around the globe. astro bottic has pro -- proposed splitting the launching cost. >> this is red rover. this is our entrant to the google x race. >> >> reporter: they are selling advertising space on the rooifr and the lander. >> it will be full of dishth logos and different opportunities for companies to have their messaging and branding and social experiences happening on the moon. >> reporter: it's competition for the sport and for business. both companies will be carrying paying customer payloads to the moon. castro bottic will bring among other things an japanese sports
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drink. >> it will be the first drink to land on the moon and serve as a time capsule for the kids of japan to put their dreams in. >> reporter: until now this is what moon exploration looked like to americans. apollo missions, astronauts, a bit of golf. now it's sports drinks. but commercializing space means just that. it is going to become commercial. >> here is jim and i when we were testing the lunar module. when you start seeing a really creative innovative lander on the moon, and you have a close-up on it and there's budweiser, you know, or nascar or some other advertising symbol, there's a little bit of -- you know, puts some ambiguity into the game. >> reporter: but he says sponsors are money. and that's the key to developing commercial space and all that
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comes with it. >> innovation is the secret to the future. that's what will enable my grandkids to look up on the moon and see lights of towns and settlements, and cities maybe. who knows. >> jacob ward joins us from san francisco. it's mind boggling when you see all of the money and competition. the concept of competing for something for which no market exists. how does this work? >> well, at this point we're talking about competition as a normalizing, stabilizing force. both companies will tell you they are grateful to the other for existing. but also throughout the history of the privatization of space, competition is what allows efficiency to happen. and it enforces a certain kind of safety.
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when we think it's just a front tier of public space explorat n explorations, your standards are different. so competition at this point is is more of a normalizing influence than a true race to bring things back. >> let's talk about the safety and dangers and the idea of lack of regulation. >> sure. >> these companies competing for instance for the google prize, are so far ahead of any regulat regulators, do we have to think about exploitation or those sorts of things? >> absolutely. if you take the moon as an example, that is governed under sort of an international treaty, the space treaty that governs it says that no nation can claim sovereignty over it. there has been thought about what one can do up there, but no
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one has touched mining. one interesting example is antarctica, and it is governed by a multinational treaty that bans mining. we would have to get around that, and come up with an environmental system. if you look at how people treat the moon in having gone there. they are blowing decree. you are seeing rovers roll right through the sites that have been historically amazing. we need a system to say we can all go there, but nobody gets to exploit the moon. >> thank you so much. >> thanks, ali. the new space economy has asteroid miners, 3-d printers, and satellites. >> are you looking at a million billion dollars industry? >> no, i think we estimate it at
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several gazillion -- i'm just kidding. no, it is a very large industry. >> you are watching the business of space. ♪
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welcome back to the business of space. i'm ali velshi. space x's inaugural space test showed that newcomers are the future of the space industry. since then millions of dollars has been pumped into startups. the stakes are high, but as melissa chan reports that isn't stopping these startups from
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thinking big. >> reporter: the map is of space, and the treasure lies in asteroids. private space companies believe that incredible amounts of rare metals could be mined from these asteroids. >> the ability to access resources in that environment as opposed to digging up the earth and hauling things up out of the gravity well of earth that is a change in the economic economic -- equation of the cost of doing business in space. >> reporter: the prospect an orbiting spacecraft. it will probe and bring samples back to earth. but there are setbacks like this one. [ explosion ] >> reporter: one of the
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resources telescopes headed for testing was destroyed in the rocket explosion. many other commercial space companies lost equipment being sent to the space station for testing. >> putting things into orbit is not a trivial task. >> reporter: it was the same for plan etd -- planet labs. your company took a hit? >> yes, but it is not a huge deal for us financially. >> reporter: they already launched 71 of their satellites into space in the last 18 months. this is one of planet labs nano satellites. it is 12 inches long and 4 inches wide. they call these doves and send them up in flocks 20 or 30 at a
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time. >> it covers about 100 square kilometers per picture. >> cube sats today have more capability than the biggest satellites that we flew 40 or 50 years ago. >> and they are disposable. it is changing the way we see the earth. >> these are sugar cane fields in south and east of the amazon. this was august 8th. this was august 9th. and you can see where this field is being burned and points out to why it is important to see the earth every day. >> reporter: companies will be able to buy the information being tracked by the satellite in real lime. >> they give us the option of really accessing space for sometimes $100 or even cheaper.
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we have the ability to image the earth at greater frequency than ever before. >> reporter: planet labs raised $16,000 in 2013. are you looking at a multi-billion dollars industry? >> no, i think we estimated it at several gazillion. no, i'm just being silly. >> it is one of the fastest growing sectors of the space industry, and potentially one of the most lucrative. the number is expected to increase by almost 90% over the next decade, resulting in more than $35 billion in manufacturing revenues. >> the ability to actually get satellites into orbit fast is really important. >> reporter: and jason dunn wants to help those satellites get into space quicker will. he is the chief technology officer for a company that has build a zero gravity 3-d
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printer. the company launched its first 3-d printer to the international space station for testing in september. but he thinks the 3-d printer could be a game changer for satellites, by 3-d printing the satellite. >> we're going to launch some of the part, and then printing the rest of the satellite, assembling it on the space station and launching it. >> reporter: the satellites could then be made and released in space, dramatically reducing the cost of launch. >> what this ends up doing is it makes it easier to constantly get new satellites in orbit. >> reporter: dunn believes the 3-d printer will be crucial by helping astronauts living on the space station by printing parts. >> we can go to the moon and use
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the resources there, and put that into a 3-d printer and put that into the house on the moon. >> reporter: planet labs has launched more commercial satellites this year than anyone else. some were very short lived, but it is just the beginning. they plan to launch another 100 nan -- nano satellites in the next year. i'm joined by the manager of the space angles which represent a group of investors that seed space industry startups. i'm so fascinated that there are people who think about these things. how does a guy like you responsible for helping these companies -- how do you know what is fantastical and
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ridiculous, versus something that really has potential. >> it's science and r&d and innovation that fuels the new markets. so as an investor, what you really want to look for is things that are pushing boundaries that might seem fan taste call to come that are, you know, developing technology that is an order of magnitude better than anything else that exists, or creating an entirely new market. that's how you make outsized returns. and that's what silicon valley was founded on in the beginning. it is only recently that investors started to reduce early-stage investing to a diverse [ inaudible ] formula. >> there's no real return on this. right? other than having sold your investment to someone else. nothing has returned a profit?
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>> in terms of returns to the investor. we're just starting to see some exits -- >> and i should be clear. there are companies that support the industry that -- that build parts, that build -- that manufacture things. that's where the money is at the moment. nobody is going out to space and doing something. >> some ones you wouldn't really think of. planetary resources is making money. xcore is making money. >> but they are not making money on the business that they set out to make money on. in other words nobody is going to the moon bringing resources back -- >> not yet. but they are taking customer orders. >> is the failure rate in space going to be higher than silicon valley or is it about the same? >> this is a very interesting question, because we're still early days. but leroy was talking about
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this, 15 years ago, there was a false start in the industry. charlottetons as he called them. but the success rate was mini l minimal. and now entrepreneurs are a lot more savvy. they are doing to the table with business plans that make sense. they are not saying, you know, give me a billion dollars and i'll build you a rocket ship. they know how to do a lot more with less. and what is happening today to give you an idea. we have had 100 companies that have applied to our network this year. probably 20 of those have made it through our screening process. >> wow. >> yeah, that's higher than it has been in the past. and that has resulted in five investments so far this year. and we could have another deal or two before the year is over. >> thank you so much for being
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with us. >> absolutely. when it comes to space startups and the commercial space industry, the united states is well ahead. but coming up, we'll tell you one thing that china is doing way better than america, when the business of space continues. ♪
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welcome back to the business of space, i'm ali velshi. the united states has the most developed private commercial space industry in the world, and the biggest government space budget, but that's not deterring other countries from making bold leaps where other men have gone before. as mary snow reports. >> reporter: the european space agency erupts into cheers and hugs as history is made. a european spacecraft lands on a speeding come met after traveling 4 billion miles over the last decade. it's aim to collect information about the earliest day of the solar system. it was a social media bonanza with millions watching as the head of the european space agency made it clear, score one for europe. >> we are the first to have done that. and that will stay forever.
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thank you very much. [ applause ] >> reporter: not so far off from the global interest that was sparked in 1957 with sputnik. >> all over the world, people are turning in to the bleep bleep of the satellite which carried aboard the highly complicated mechanism necessary to transmit secrets of the universe. >> reporter: the russian satellite launched the space age. >> in an age where the race to concur space as become an all-absorbing factor. >> but the race to space in the 60s was fraught with political tensions. now it's what people in the space industry call co-op-tition. >> this is an example of multiple countries coming together to work on a project. the most complex engineering
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feet we have ever attained. >> reporter: but as a result of tensions over ukraine, the u.s. announced it was suspending all space programs with russia, except for the space station. nasa still relies on russia to send american astronauts to the space station. paying around $70 million a seat for each astronaut. china is also working on building its own space station. and it has set its sites on landing on think moon and collecting lunar samples, perhaps to compete with u.s. companies looking to mine there. the united states still pumps the most money into its space programs at $42 billion in 2013. europe and russia come in a loose second, followed by china and japan.
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india has one of the smallest government space budgets at $1 billion. but it hasn't deterred the country from making huge leaps. it launched a mars orbit for in 2013. and on a shoe string budget of $75 million, compared to nasa's $671 million for a similar mission. >> the success of our space program is a shining symbol of what we are capable of as a nation. >> reporter: mary snow, al jazeera. the director of research for the space foundation says forget talk of a global space race, the u.s. is so far ahead that there is no real competition. but the word that mary just used co-op -- atition. there was a news headline that says russia wins the race into
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space. it is a very different mine set now. >> absolutely. back in the early days you had the u.s. and soviet union and they were trying to accomplish milestones. who could put a man in space. who would land someone on the moon. now the competition is really more on an economic level. who can get the largest share of the global launch market? who can provide more satellite services across the globe. >> and it is a little bit different because back then it was still in the shadows of a cold war, and while we have spent time talking about the fact there may be a new cold war developing, that is not the concept for the space race anymore? >> absolutely. people are looking at ways to work together. and even when you have a mission that is being sent to another planet, and maybe it's technically a nasa mission. they are still going to be working with universities around the world, they may provide some
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of the instruments on the spacecraft and agencies as well. the upcoming james webb we have a strong collaboration for a mission like that. >> their goals having to do with space exploration are very different than american goals or -- or the goals of somebody like elon mosque. tell us about that. >> i think the goal for all of us regardless of nation is to go out and explore and learn more about space, but we all do it in different ways. so you have the european space agency, which just achieved an incredible feet, landing on a come met, but then, yes, you have someone like elon who got into the rocket business because he wanted to send a greenhouse experiment to mars, and he realized it would be so
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incredibly expensive to do that, that he decided to start his own rocket company. >> we just showed the fact that indians were able to send this probe to mars for $75 million. how does something like that happen? >> well, it depends on how the spacecraft is constructed, and what it's capabilities are. and people draw the comparison between the cost of the indian spacecraft and a similar nasa mission. but they are similar in time frame, not necessarily capabilities. the entire instrument payload aboard the indian spacecraft weighs about the same as one of the instruments abort nasa's spacecraft. >> you say the role china is playing in the world is interesting. it's about getting to space, but it's also about soft power. >> right. so a country like china is very
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strategic about how it uses its space program. and in their case, it's not so much about exploration as it is providing services. so the chinese have worked very closely with nigeria, venezuela, and other countries that have a lot of natural resources that can then be used in the chinese economy. so they use their space program in providing satellites, and training for the people in those countries on how to use the satellites. that's one of their ways of gaining some diplomatic power and forging new relationships that can be used in other areas, outside of the space industry to fuel the chinese economy. >> all right. micah thank you so much for joining us. the director of research and analysis at the space foundation. it may sound like a movie trailer, but many of the word's space programs have their sites
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set on exploring and one day even colonizing mars. >> we can send humans to mars without needing to bring everything we need with us, because we'll already know how to use the resources on mars to sustain ourselves. ♪ >> protestors are gathering... >> there's an air of tension right now... >> the crowd chanting for democracy... >> this is another significant development... >> we have an exclusive story tonight, and we go live...
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>> tomorrow. al jazeera america presents. >> this is it. >> oscar winner alex gibney's "edge of eighteen", thanksgiving marathon. >> oh my god! >> intense pressure. >> if i said that i'm perfectly
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fine, i would be lying. >> tough realities. >> i feel so utterly alone. >> life changing moments. >> in this envelope is my life. >> if you don't go to college you gonna be stuck here... i don't wanna be stuck here. >> catch the whole ground-breaking series. "edge of eighteen". thanksgiving marathon. tomorrow. 9:00 am eastern. only on al jazeera america. ♪ we have heard a lot of crazy things tonight. colonizing mars, mining asteroids, 3-d printing entire moon towns. but this is the time to set big goals and yes, even dream of it. we still don't know what the push into commercial space is going to look like even a hundred years from now. but here is what some leaders believe. >> we know we with connected to the cosmos. we don't always know why. >> it is that space calls to us.
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we're fascinated with these big questions. is there life elsewhere. >> 20, 30 years down the road we have the ability to not have to send humans on what today seems like a camping trip, you can send people to mars without having to bring everything we need with us. >> we with build infrastructure. >> the first kids born on earth will look up and see lights on the moon. >> it is the ultimate opportunity to grow, to expand, to reach your full potential, and i don't mean just as individuals. i mean the whole life here on earth. it is the grand opening. and it has no end. >> sustaining life on mars may stretch the limits of our collective imagination, but so does landing a spacecraft on a moving comet and we just did
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that. space exploration has always forced to focus on our future. children like me who grew up as star trek fans today use devices that would make captain kurt green with envy. artificial heart pumps were developed from the technology based on the space shuttles fuel pumps. more than 1300 advances that have pushed humanity forward, and that number will only grow with the proliferation of new commercial space companies, continuing to push the boundaries of our imagination. so next time you look up at the endless possibilities in the sky, remember as we push the limits of technology up there we'll continue to benefit and evolve down here. thank you for joining us in our exploration of the business of space. ♪
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