Look into the distance
I've come out as a science fiction fan at this point a few times. I have a particular soft spot for authors like Arthur C. Clarke, Hal Clement or Robert Heinlein. In that "classic" era of the genre, future technical developments were often the focus of the narrative, such as space travel. I read the article on page 74 about futuristic rocket engines with corresponding interest. Because with conventional methods, all of which depend on fuel carried with us, it will be difficult for us to explore the outer solar system, let alone get beyond that into interstellar space.
Of course one can ask why we should pursue this goal at all. Shouldn't people concentrate all their strengths to solve the many current problems on earth instead of letting their gaze wander into distant expanses? The idea seems convincing at first. But then another SF classic comes to mind: "The End of Eternity" by Issac Asimov. Here, a time-travel organization repeatedly intervenes in the course of history in a minimally invasive manner with the best of intentions in order to avert catastrophes and reduce risks. However, this means that people only tackle the risky interstellar space flight when it is too late, because other intelligent life forms have now colonized the entire galaxy. Mankind, imprisoned on planet earth, is not dying out because of a shortage of resources or nuclear wars, but because of collective depression due to a lack of future prospects. So maybe we need to look beyond the near and middle horizon from time to time and ask ourselves where we want to go in the long term.
Other visionaries direct their focus down into the deep sea instead of up into space. Plans to mine valuable raw materials such as manganese nodules or sulfide ores in the vicinity of hot springs have been taking shape for a number of years. That would provide metals that will be needed for future electric cars, for example. In our interview, Carsten Rühlemann and Ulrich Schwarz-Schampera from the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources describe the current state of affairs from page 52 onwards. It is still unclear today how deep-sea mining will affect the ecosystems there and whether the previously planned protected areas are sufficient. So there is still some research work to be done here so that we can ensure that the affected biotopes do not suffer irreparable damage. Farsightedness is also called for on this topic!
Enlightening reading wishes