Thousands of people around the Earth have been working for decades trying to get answers to questions that have teased humankind since our beginning.

What's out there? Could another planet Earth, with life, be spinning around waiting to be discovered or visited?

We asked Dr. Jim Green, Chief Scientist for NASA, questions that ranged from what if an asteroid hits us to what can we learn by sending humans out into the solar system.

Tim Weisberg, host of Spooky SouthCoast on WBSM, joined me as I spoke with Dr. Green about the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART), a simulation that launched a device toward an approaching asteroid to divert its trajectory away from our planet.

NASA's mission isn't only to send humans to the moon and Mars and back, but to protect life on this planet. And for this reason, we just can't write off potential global asteroid disasters.

NASA's first asteroid sample return mission from the near-Earth asteroid Bennu has been taken and will return here in 2023 to study. If scientists find that it holds water, I wonder if that means life is sustainable in space, if an atmosphere were created? The way we have artificial insemination for the birth of humans, we can also create an atmosphere where life can exist in outer space.

More and more, private enterprise is co-investing in many of the missions. There's money to be made in the future. And by doing so, NASA is developing the most advanced rockets and spacecraft that will launch human exploration farther into space, where astronauts will build stations needed for challenging destinations, including Mars—and deeper.

As our nation celebrates the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, I applaud NASA's continued vision to reach for new heights and reveal the unknown for the benefit of humankind.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

More From WBSM-AM/AM 1420