The 2010’s were an important decade for astronomy, NASA and the private industry. During this past decade, we discovered Pluto for the first time, the Space Shuttle launched for the final time and the long time Mars rovers went silent.

This is the decade when I became more and more interested in backyard astronomy, looking up through a telescope, checking out the planets, seeing my first rocket launches from Kennedy Space Center and Wallops Island Flight Facility, this is why I am creating astronomy videos, to share my love of astronomy! Before we get into why I think this decade was so important, let’s recap what we have seen happen in these past 10 years.

The last Space Shuttle Launch was on July 8, 2011. Check out these Highlights of the mission launch.

This mission was the final of the Shuttle program, the first launch was way back in 1981.

Who would have thought, just 7 years later, from the same launch pad we would be watching this…

On Feb 8th, 2018, SpaceX Launched its first Falcon Heavy rocket from Pad 39A in Cape Canaveral Florida. Launching Starman and Elon’ Musks original roadster on an orbit further away from the sun than Mars!

Of course, both side boosters landing on Live TV and streaming for the first time, was an incredible moment to see which I believe ignited a new era in Space in the United States and the rest of the world. While there have been landings before from SpaceX on a Drone ship, seeing two side boosters land, at the same time, was incredible. And on top of that, we were treated with incredible views of Earth.

The future of space exploration is in the hands of the private industry, whether it takes us to nearby asteroids for mining precious metals or it helps us build a colony on Mars, the Private industry like SpaceX, Blue Origin, Rocket Lab and others will take us there.  In the past few weeks, Boeing tested an unmanned rocket for sending American Astronauts from American soil to the Space Station, SpaceX has a launch soon. Smaller companies like Rocket Lab have recently opened a launch Pad in Wallops Island, Virginia for launches in 2020 to allow companies to send satellites to Earth’s orbit. These are all things not possible just 5 to 10 years ago. 

Jeff Edmondson