The more that mankind learns about the Solar System, the more it reveals a true and profound need for human beings to undertake further exploration of other planets. At the very least, beginning a true exploration of the solar system will lead to unparalleled commercial opportunities for mining and zero-G manufacturing, in addition to a more profound understanding of how the fundamental forces of nature shape planetary environments under the unique conditions on other planets.
The alternative to rocket technology needs to be a form of intertialess, reactionless drive – something that doesn’t have the poor fuel-consumption of a rocket, and something that won’t crush our astronauts during acceleration. Even conventional physics supports the concept in theory, but a new physics will be required to develop it in practice.
At the very least, we’ll be able to realize vast new commercial opportunities through space-mining and manufacturing, and a possibility exists that if other civilizations have visited our solar system in the past that we’ll find relics of their visits in our travels. After all, the solar system has been around for a quite a while, and if we can develop the FTL propulsion system to travel between the stars, then so can they.