In the science fiction novels or scenarios we usually get the picture of an established future. Somehow we got out there and we’re doing something interesting. The background of how we leave our cradle is normally left out or limited to some milestone (i.e. the discovery of a better engine or such). It’s a kind of fast forward to the future that works well in the speculative fiction, but let out the most difficult part of our collective future.
As of 2018, we have a lot of great projects ongoing. Two different unmanned missions will approach asteroids for collect samples, a number of probes are moving around the Solar System, new launch systems are deploying and the next big step, Mars, is in the making. This is great stuff, with tons of new data coming up and a whole lot of good science. Plus, we have a bigger number of players, both in the private and in the public sector, ready to compete in the market and to push for more opportunities in the years to come.