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Asteroid and planetary exploitation: who ever controls the solar system controls the Earth.

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posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 12:30 PM
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So first of all what is the problem? Why do we need to bother? Its a lot of work and risk to go into space right? Should we not just use our resources to fix the world first?

Well to answer this we need to look at the world resources. Our way of life is consuming resources at a fast rate and not just fossil fuels. All the stuff we take for granted consumes not just the common resources like Iron and Zinc ect but also the rare earth materials like platinum and rubidium. Also if we want to make our technology more environmentally friendly we need more and more rare earth minerals. The other problem we have is energy. Burning fossil fuels is just not tenable and Wind and solar could not power our needs. Fusion seems to be the way of the future and strides have been slowly but steadily taken in that direction. But it seems like Helium 3 is the best fuel source for this. Again this is something that is rare. I think we can all agree as resources run dry more and more wars will start and the poor to lower middle classes will suffer as prices will sky rocket. So to answer the last question Should we not just use our resources to fix the world first? well we cant.

So what the alternative to a bleak future of wars and deprivation? Well luckily there are other sources of resources out there! Resources that are within reach! Resources that could sustain mankind for the foreseeable future. So were are they? The answer In orbit of the earth and our sun.


Near Earth Asteroids:

First of all lets look at near earth objects or NEO. These are asteroids and inert comets which orbits cause them to regularly pass near earth. 9000 of these have been discovered so far with 1500 estimated to be easier to get to than the moon 1 . There are many types of NEO some which reside mainly in Earth's orbit and others that intersect it.



(Image from www.planetaryresources.com...)

Why are these of any importance? Well it is reckoned that most of our minerals here on earth have come from asteroid impacts over the years2 .These asteroids could be rich in the very resources we need for survival. Planetary resources a company set up to start exploiting this claims "
Why are these of any importance? Well it is reckoned that most of our minerals here on earth have come from asteroid impacts over the years2 .These asteroids could be rich in the very resources we need for survival. Planetary resources a company set up to start exploiting this claims "a single platinum-rich 500 meter wide asteroid contains about 174 times the yearly world output of platinum, and 1.5 times the known world-reserves of platinum group metals (ruthenium, rhodium, palladium, osmium, iridium,
and platinum)."3 So its clear just our near Earth asteroids alone are full of many of the resources we need. Another source quotes "3554 Amun is a mile-wide (2,000-meter) lump of iron, nickel, cobalt, platinum, and other metals; it contains 30 times as much metal as Humans have mined throughout history, although it is only the smallest of dozens of known metallic asteroids and worth perhaps US$ 20 trillion" 4 .

The Moon:



Concept picture of Moon mining (en.wikipedia.org...:Moon_colony_with_rover.jpeg)

Well I think most know the main and most important resource that the moon holds is helium 3. This looks like it could become our future energy source. It is estimated there is 1 million tonnes embedded in the lunar surface5 and at the moment it is going for £1600 per litre and Japans J-PARC needs 100,000 litres of helium-3 to run properly6 . Not only is Helium 3 used in fusion but it is also used by neutron detectors used to scan for Nuclear devices and dirty bombs which consume large amounts of Helium 3.


Mars:




( Illustration of a potential mars base with cutaway. (en.wikipedia.org...:Concept_Mars_colony.jpg)

Mars colonisation has been a dream for may organisations. But how would we benefit?
Well the majority of probes, and rovers we have sent there have discovered its soil is made up of aluminium, iron, magnesium, and titanium7.




Table above show composition of Martian soil. (Fairen, A. et al. 2009. Nature: 459. 401.)

On the surface nickel-iron meteorites have been found by the spirit and Opportunity Rovers. There composition would make them easily refinable and a good source of steel8.


Mars could potentially be a source of some valuable minerals as well as goof place to set up industry in support of a space infrastructure.

Titan:



( www.wired.com...)


Saturn's moon of Titan is what I think is the dark horse of our solar system.





( en.wikipedia.org...:Liquid_lakes_on_titan.jpg)


Above is a picture of the surface of Titan taken by the Cassini Probe. Now what you can see are lakes. Huge lakes. But they don't contain water. They contain Methane and Ethane hydrocarbons the things we are so desperately running out of. This moon could supply our need for plastics and chemicals for a very long time.

Titan it seems has a cycle like our water cycle but for hydrocarbons. Lakes and rivers have been discorved10 11. And its suggested this is just the tip of the iceberg! There is most likely underground. Not only are there rivers the size of the Nile and Lakes the size of our great lakes of black gold but there are clouds of propane, Ethane and Methane. On this moon it literally rains hydrocarbons!

Conclusion:
Well all though this is only really a summary of what out there in our solar system it is clear that there are plenty of resources out there. With mankind's population growing and resources running out we have no choose but to start reaching out for these. All though more expensive to acquire than earth based resources at least in the short term it is likely our only choose if we want to continue our high standard of living. These resources could very well mean the difference between survival and death and in my opinion who ever gets there first will be the next super power!

Future posts will cover more detail of each planet, moon and resources and why that a infrastructure in space could be feasible.

References:
1) www.planetaryresources.com...

2) www.sciencedaily.com...

3) www.planetaryresources.com...

4) chview.nova.org...

5) fti.neep.wisc.edu...

6) www.rsc.org...

7) Fairen, A. et al. 2009. Nature: 459. 401-404.

8) Squyres, et al. 2004. The Opportunity Rover's Athena science investigation at Meridiani Planum. Science: 306. 1598-1703.

10) Dermott, S. F. and Sagan, C. (1995). "Tidal effects of disconnected hydrocarbon seas on Titan". Nature 374 (6519): 238–240..

11) saturn.jpl.nasa.gov...

Other resources used:
Slezak, Michael New Scientist. 3/2/2013, Vol. 217 Issue 2906, p8-10. 3p.




posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 12:31 PM
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By the way its the first time I have really tried to post puctures is there anyway to get them in the post rather than as external links?



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 12:55 PM
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hya crazyewok

Maybe im losing my marbles..(been losing for years)

Its easier for the guv to just bring it in to our orbit and wait till it crashes.

Bill gates gets what he wants, as in depop and very expensive minerals.

The buggers are spreading propaganda which they learnt from Hitler, sorry Hister
and nothing now will stop it.

Paronoia? yeh so put me on prozac and thy will be a dutifull citizen with nowt to fear


In the whole:

Paranoia spreads paranoia.
we eat it up daily.

Me personally, kill bill then camermoron



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 01:02 PM
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As the Earth's resources continue to dwindle and population growth I can see wars breaking out over this.If this heavenly bodies are in our backyard we MUST utilize them if we're to survive here.And btw,if Mr.Gates feels the planet too crowded for him why doest he leave?



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 01:22 PM
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reply to post by crazyewok
 


What about dealing with what we have instead of getting more resources for more power hungry people in order to colonize new planets considering we live in an unseen aristocracy???

Mark my words, the world needs to become much better at its fundamentals before we can even start to think about this, power to the people and not the opposite nor an illusion of it.



Thruthseek3r



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 03:03 PM
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Originally posted by thruthseek3r
reply to post by crazyewok
 


What about dealing with what we have instead of getting more resources for more power hungry people in order to colonize new planets considering we live in an unseen aristocracy???

Mark my words, the world needs to become much better at its fundamentals before we can even start to think about this, power to the people and not the opposite nor an illusion of it.



Thruthseek3r



Well if you want to give up your Computer and car and stop useing electricity no ones stopping you.

Because thats the problem. All our morden tec needs all these rare earths plus if we want clean engery we will need rare earths. So unless we go back to pre industrial why of life or reduce our population by 2/3 we cant solve our problems on just earth alone.
edit on 4-7-2013 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 04:16 PM
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Originally posted by crazyewok
By the way its the first time I have really tried to post puctures is there anyway to get them in the post rather than as external links?


Yes but only if you upload th pictures as you did for your avatar


I enjoy your thread idea and couldn't agree more with your premise. I feel that barring a dramatic population crash we as humans have to move forward into the solar system in order to protect the Earth, ourselves and whatever sort of future we may be ab,e to bring about. There is no stepping back at this point to fix things



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 04:55 PM
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Originally posted by iforget

Originally posted by crazyewok
By the way its the first time I have really tried to post puctures is there anyway to get them in the post rather than as external links?


Yes but only if you upload th pictures as you did for your avatar


I enjoy your thread idea and couldn't agree more with your premise. I feel that barring a dramatic population crash we as humans have to move forward into the solar system in order to protect the Earth, ourselves and whatever sort of future we may be ab,e to bring about. There is no stepping back at this point to fix things


Thanks I will do that for my next big thread.

And yeah no stepping back now. We missed that line 50/60 years ago. Now its expand or die



posted on Jul, 4 2013 @ 10:14 PM
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Originally posted by crazyewok

Originally posted by thruthseek3r
reply to post by crazyewok
 


What about dealing with what we have instead of getting more resources for more power hungry people in order to colonize new planets considering we live in an unseen aristocracy???

Mark my words, the world needs to become much better at its fundamentals before we can even start to think about this, power to the people and not the opposite nor an illusion of it.




Thruthseek3r



Well if you want to give up your Computer and car and stop useing electricity no ones stopping you.

Because thats the problem. All our morden tec needs all these rare earths plus if we want clean engery we will need rare earths. So unless we go back to pre industrial why of life or reduce our population by 2/3 we cant solve our problems on just earth alone.
edit on 4-7-2013 by crazyewok because: (no reason given)


I highly doubt it, look at how fast technology is developing and consider that what what see available to consumers is just a tiny fraction of what is already done. The thing is we should focus on making a better earth with what we already have without starting to go mining in space. If you haven't realized yet, we live mostly in an Empire and an empire is not something to be taken easy. I say unless politics, as they are right now take a dramatic change for the benefit of the people instead for a little minority, think of going in space is suicidal imho.



Thruthseek3r



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 01:40 AM
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Originally posted by crazyewok
Should we not just use our resources to fix the world first? well we cant.


Yes we can




So what the alternative to a bleak future of wars and deprivation? Well luckily there are other sources of resources out there! Resources that are within reach! Resources that could sustain mankind for the foreseeable future. So were are they? The answer In orbit of the earth and our sun.


Agreed. With the calculating capability of a simple calculator, we landed on the moon.
We even landed on an asteroid.



Near Earth Asteroids:

First of all lets look at near earth objects or NEO. These are asteroids and inert comets which orbits cause them to regularly pass near earth. 9000 of these have been discovered so far with 1500 estimated to be easier to get to than the moon 1 . There are many types of NEO some which reside mainly in Earth's orbit and others that intersect it.


Great idea, however the window of success is pretty small for a mining vessel to land, mine, stock and send back stuff back to Earth is difficult.

Fast moving objects orbiting in our solar system are a pretty difficult and long term operation. Good luck.


The Moon:
Well I think most know the main and most important resource that the moon holds is helium 3. This looks like it could become our future energy source. It is estimated there is 1 million tonnes embedded in the lunar surface5 and at the moment it is going for £1600 per litre and Japans J-PARC needs 100,000 litres of helium-3 to run properly6 . Not only is Helium 3 used in fusion but it is also used by neutron detectors used to scan for Nuclear devices and dirty bombs which consume large amounts of Helium 3.


Yes Helium 3 is awesome however, what happens to the Moon if you remove large quantities of it's interior from it ?
Haven't you seen the Time machine, where the Moon ended up breaking to pieces....?



Mars:
Mars colonisation has been a dream for may organisations. But how would we benefit?
Well the majority of probes, and rovers we have sent there have discovered its soil is made up of aluminium, iron, magnesium, and titanium7.


We need to go their first, only a private project is currently trying to colonize Mars, mining it will not be happening anytime soon, my guess.


On the surface nickel-iron meteorites have been found by the spirit and Opportunity Rovers. There composition would make them easily refinable and a good source of steel8.


Mars could potentially be a source of some valuable minerals as well as goof place to set up industry in support of a space infrastructure.


Pretty cool all these minerals, but what are we going to do with them here ? We can't even clean up the waste we make on Earth, let alone add more to it in my humble opinion.


Titan:
Saturn's moon of Titan is what I think is the dark horse of our solar system.


Yes Titan. Yummy along with the other celestial bodies in our Solar system. We aren't really able to reach it easily, and if we do we still need to figure out how to even mine the wanted materials.

I would you suggest we start such massive undertakings, of projects we aren't even sure to be successful in the near future. Collect all kinds of minerals and stuff, bring it back to Earth, Save for that matter without messing up the rest of the planet ?

I'm all for though. But we have some pretty big steps to make before we can even try to do what you suggest aren't we ?

I'm a nobody so I could be wrong here of course.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 05:45 AM
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reply to post by thruthseek3r
 


Yeah tecnologly is moveing fast but that just means we need more rare earths!

There is barely enough to go around now. A lot of scientits are claiming we are consuming 2 earths as it is! Its not sustainable. And that when billions are still liveing in poverty in the third world. If they start living the western good life too that means even more will be consumed


Earth if a finite space with finite resources and our population is growing along with our demand for resources to fuel our tecnology.

Its all well and good haveing the moral high ground and trying to be all hotey totey. But the fact is its just putting hard caps annd makeing thing for difficult to solve our problems. One on the biggest reasons for war and poverty barring religion is lack of resources, putting a cap on were we get them is just naive and hippieish and just shooting yourself in the foot.

Sayying we should not go into space until we sort our problems out creates a sef destructing spiral. Because if we can address the resources problem then we can solve alot of earths problems.



How would you suggest solveing the worlds problem? Because all I can see are these options:
Expand into space
Force a massive population decrease (you going first?)
Or go back to pre industrial life (So you getting rid of your modern appliances?)



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 07:58 AM
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reply to post by crazyewok
 





How would you suggest solveing the worlds problem?


Solar, wind and tidal = surplus energy that is inexhaustable.

JUST solar alone, used and sited properly is more than enough for the ENTIRE electrical energy demands of Great Britain..other nations could scale up or down according to their individual demands.

Here's a VERY rough calc..

1KW PV panel (made of smaller panels) occupies a space approximately 1.5m x 1.0m.

A flat topped boat or barge can be built to almost any size, but lets say an 'off the shelf' barge is 150m X 20m in size and has 1000's of tonnes storage space below the flat top deck.

This means approximately 2000 X 1KW panels will fit onto one barge, for a total per barge of 2MW solar.

Great Britain has a rough off peak electricity demand of around 40GW rising to around 60GW at peak demand.

For solar to meet this demand entirely on it's own, between 20,000 to 30,000 such equipped barges would provide the off peak and peak electrical demands.

The barges would be placed off shore, in a anchored daisy-chain of up to 100 barges wide, next to and fixed to one another (2000 Meters wide) and 200 barges long (30Km), again fixed bow to stern around the coastlines in the South.

20,000 barges of 150m length, sounds like it wouldn't fit in the space available, but if you pardon the pun, it's a drop in the Ocean...there is room for 1000X this number, with room to spare..there's plenty of room, even with keeping shipping routes completely clear.

With the economies of scale involved in such a large project, each barge is assigned an arbitrary fully equipped price of £1 Million per barge.

This reveals the total, one off cost (with small ongoing maintenance costs) of approximately £20 - £30 Billion...for the entire electrical demands of the whole of Great Britain!

It's a paltry figure,l sounds a lot, but when you consider the UK have only just spent around £10 Billion for the Olympic games for a few weeks of sports...the £30 Billion (one off) payment for ALL of our electrical needs is very cheap indeed.

Surplus energy can be sold off for pure profit, or used to extract Hydrogen and Oxygen from seawater which can be further refined and processed to use in industry, automotive applications such as fuel cells and for aggriculture, and use the Hydrogen extracted during sunlit hours to drive turbines during the dark periods..

Underneath the barge PV top layer, there is a large area that can also solve another problem...sea positioned farming. Each barge would be able to grow crops hydroponically and also make use of the by products of seawater into fresh or into Hydrogen production...the minerals and salts that left over...these are valuable fertilisers and are useful and needed for a range of applications.

It is NOT about limited resources...it's about limited imagination and planning to achieve a balanced solution to any problem...we just need to think better, not about spending £ Trillions to mine asteroids.

The above calc are for PV solar only...if we included tidal bouys, and smarter designed, smaller, squatter wind turbines on each barge, we could probably triple or quadruple electrical output and pick up the slack in the hours of darkness. Again, the generous surplus could be sold to landlocked nations without a coastline to utilise for power generation.

It's madness we're not doing this now...in fact it's totally insane we didn't do it 30 years ago.
edit on 5-7-2013 by MysterX because: correction



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 08:29 AM
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reply to post by MysterX
 



And do you need to build these solar pannels? And to make our current tec more enegry efficiant?

Resources, a lot of them RARE EARTHS.


It not just energy its alos about hard materials that we use everyday. Even Iron is running out. Wars if not already (see rare earths in Afganitsan) will be fought over these.


I do not see the aversion to minning near earth astroids and planetry bodies in our solar system. All I can see is luddites scared of change and progress. People wanted to stagnat growth until we start killing each other even more over the little resources we have until we complety destroy ourselfs.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 08:41 AM
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Originally posted by Sinter Klaas


Yes we can



No we cant hense the rising cost of resources we take for granted. We are alreday consuming too much and that just covers the rich west. There are billion more wanting to live the good life like us.


Originally posted by Sinter Klaas

Agreed. With the calculating capability of a simple calculator, we landed on the moon.
We even landed on an asteroid.

Yup the basic tec has been around since the late 60's


Originally posted by Sinter Klaas

Great idea, however the window of success is pretty small for a mining vessel to land, mine, stock and send back stuff back to Earth is difficult.

Fast moving objects orbiting in our solar system are a pretty difficult and long term operation. Good luck.

Well if you read some of the sources then yeah alot will be too much bother than there worth. But there is a handfull that are pretty easy to reach and just extracting a couple would take the burdeen off our strained earth for a few decades at least.

As for difficulty I will be posting another thread on feasibility and challenges to over come.


Originally posted by Sinter Klaas

Yes Helium 3 is awesome however, what happens to the Moon if you remove large quantities of it's interior from it ?
Haven't you seen the Time machine, where the Moon ended up breaking to pieces....?

Yes its called fiction. I doubt removing a million tons of material will do much seeing as astroids have hit the moon bigger than that over the years and not knocked it out of orbit.



Originally posted by Sinter Klaas
We need to go their first, only a private project is currently trying to colonize Mars, mining it will not be happening anytime soon, my guess.

I agree we have to set up a infrastructure first. NEO and the Moon will be our closet goals.
Mars could potentially be a source of some valuable minerals as well as goof place to set up industry in support of a space infrastructure.


Originally posted by Sinter Klaas
Pretty cool all these minerals, but what are we going to do with them here ? We can't even clean up the waste we make on Earth, let alone add more to it in my humble opinion.

Good point which I will cover in a later thread. But the jist of it is we will have to start moving industry of planet. so the dirt manufacturing will be done there.



Originally posted by Sinter Klaas
Yes Titan. Yummy along with the other celestial bodies in our Solar system. We aren't really able to reach it easily, and if we do we still need to figure out how to even mine the wanted materials.

I would you suggest we start such massive undertakings, of projects we aren't even sure to be successful in the near future. Collect all kinds of minerals and stuff, bring it back to Earth, Save for that matter without messing up the rest of the planet ?


Yeah its a long goal but we have to start somewere and start planning. It is possible and ideas are out there.
again I will cover that in a later thread.








posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 10:32 AM
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Originally posted by crazyewok
reply to post by MysterX
 



And do you need to build these solar pannels? And to make our current tec more enegry efficiant?

Resources, a lot of them RARE EARTHS.


It not just energy its alos about hard materials that we use everyday. Even Iron is running out. Wars if not already (see rare earths in Afganitsan) will be fought over these.


I do not see the aversion to minning near earth astroids and planetry bodies in our solar system. All I can see is luddites scared of change and progress. People wanted to stagnat growth until we start killing each other even more over the little resources we have until we complety destroy ourselfs.


While i both recognise and support a need for Human resources in space, it's just not required for raw materials purposes. For advancement of our species, the only way is up i agree.

And for species protection purposes, ultimately multiple outposts 'out there' are going to be an absolute must sooner or later. Asteroid mining will get the ball rolling on our species moving further out, and becoming a proper space faring species, but the mining aspect is simply a catalyst...and a carrot for the money people to dribble over.


But firms that make their money mining this planet say the Earth is one big, practically inexhaustible mine, with just as many unexplored corners as outer space. "We think there are 10,000 more years of minerals left for civilization," said Andrew McKenzie, a geologist and BHP Billiton BHP -1.31% PLC's chief executive for nonferrous metals. "Civilization will change, of course, and there will be different minerals involved, but 10,000 more years."


Wall Street Journal

As for Iron, there is known to be at least 600 years worth at current usage rate, and bearing in mind, if we compared the Earths surface to an onion, we have not in any way shape or form, mined even the brown outer skin yet...we don't mine every square inch of surface, and we don't mine very deeply...a huge % of the Earth hasn't even been prospected let alone had a shovel sunk into it.

Yes, we need to go to space 'properly' and yes, commercial asteroid mining will be the start of this...but lets call a spade a spade...it's not due to lack of resources on Earth.

As for the materials required for GW's of PV energy, the printed PV on a roll is VERY cheap in terms of speed of production, cost and resources.


edit on 5-7-2013 by MysterX because: added link to WSJ



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 11:33 AM
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reply to post by MysterX
 


No i agree we have only skimmed the suface of earths resources. But the rest seem to be in hostile countrys that dont want to share or in places were we would have to damage the enviroment to get at.


If we mine NEOs at the very least it would releave some of the enviromental problems of strip minning ect as you cant pollute a astroid or hostile planet.



posted on Jul, 5 2013 @ 01:01 PM
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reply to post by crazyewok
 


Yes, from an environmental point of view, Asteroid or NEO mining trumpts digging holes in the Earth i agree...all until something goes wrong...and in our experience, sooner or later something always goes wrong.

Any scenario that can be envisaged can and in all likelihood will happen if mining becomes a permanent thing.

Everything from stranded miners, needing expensive rescues, to the motor assist attached to a small NEO suffering a catastrophic malfunction and instead of parking the thing in orbit...brings it crashing down on top of a populated area(s)...the environmental impact (no pun) of such a possible scenario will be more severe than anything done to Earth by Humanity since the dawn of time.

Asteroids and comets are increasingly suspected of bringing 'the seeds' of life to Earth and elsewhere..rudimentary forms of precursor DNA building blocks have been detected on Solar bodies and as far away as Sagitarius A...if present, and a miner or the mined minerals themselves have come into contact with something that could contaminate the biosphere or indeed us ourselves...we could be bringing about our own demise...unlikely, but not beyond the realms of possibility.

And the financial cost of doing this mining is going to be astronomical. As mad as it sounds, It would be cheaper to synthesize all the Gold we would need in the future (assuming no new sources are mined from the Earth) in the lining of a nuclear reactor, or isolated from Seawater than to go into space to mine it from NEOs.

If we're going to go into space and spread our species far and wide (which i've wanted to be a part of since i was old enough to hold a thought), we should do it right. Do it properly and with purpose...genuine purpose.

The guarenteed continuation and advancement of the Human species is a genuine purpose. No amount of wealth can top that.

What i would like to see happen in the near to mid term future, is 100% employment on this planet. All nations joining in a shared vision and common project on a scale never before seen or recorded in history.

A project that would dwarf anything we have ever done...the pyramids of Egypt, the Great wall of China, the moon landings could all be likened to childs play in comparison...we should unite, put away our ridiculous squabbles and petty problem, reaction, solution mindsets and build colonial space craft, multiple, huge space craft used to take Human beings and equipment to planets and moons in our system, carrying all the equipment, tooling and supplies needed to construct spacious and permanent settlements wherever we can adequately sustain Human and plant life.

It would be a project that would take many decades to accomplish, and while it would probably make trillions for the corporations at the leading edge of the project, the entire world would also be reaping the financial rewards of the project.

The Human species itself would be the biggest winner though, especially if another 'Dinosaur' killer from space hits while we're looking the other way, trapped here. If we're spread out, we survive...if we're all here, we probably won't...seed banks or not.

So yeah, let's certainly make proper moves to go into space, but lets do it with honesty and for the right reasons..i just don't happen to think we need to mine asteroids for precious minerals..at least not yet.



posted on Jul, 7 2013 @ 12:51 AM
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Exploiting Near Earth Object's resources is going to be a major business and there are some companies that are already in the process of developing ways to exploit resources on NEOs. I found a very interesting article regarding a company that wants to become "Asteroid Miners".




This article is from April 24, 2012


Following a few days of excited build-up, Planetary Resources, a new space startup backed by heavy hitters including Larry Page and James Cameron, officially announced its plans to mine asteroids near Earth. At the Tuesday morning event, which took place at the packed Space Gallery in the Museum of Flight in Seattle, the company said it would launch phase one of its mission within two years and use the next decade just to identify resource-rich asteroids.



Diamandis cited the various factors that have come together to make now the right time for asteroid mining. Today’s technology allows small companies to create low-cost and powerful spacecraft, and people like Jeff Bezos, Paul Allen, and Elon Musk have shown how private teams can enter what was once the realm of governments. There is a new generation of billionaires now investing in space, such as Richard Branson, and now is when we need these people the most because resources are becoming scarce. Finally, NASA is partnering with private companies on its goal of extending humans’ presence in space.


So what resources would this team be looking for? What would they do with their finds?


The company wants to access two types of resources: water and platinum metals. Water and its constituent elements, hydrogen and oxygen, are “the best rocket fuel out there.” They would be able to supply NASA exploration missions, fuel private exploration missions, boost satellites, fuel space stations, support private colonization efforts, and fuel tugs that could be used to clean up space debris.


This is their three phase plan:

Phase 1


The spacecraft that will make this sci-fi dream a reality is called the Arkyd line, which is being developed in phases, starting with the 100 series. These will act as specialized telescopes to prospect and identify the right asteroids. Later versions will be used to extract the resources.


The Arkyd 101 telescope in person (top) and in mocked-up artwork from Planetary Resources (bottom).

Phase 2

The second phase of the venture is prospecting, which will involve “swarming” the potential asteroids with telescopes and spacecraft to find the right marks. “There are 8,931 near-Earth asteroids we know of. This represents one percent of the near-Earth asteroids that are larger than 50 meters,” said Anderson.


Phase 3

The third phase is going to be deciding what to do next and exactly how to do it, including working with NASA to decide what the top targets are. “By that time, we’re going to ask, ‘Does NASA need gas stations?’”


And...the third phase is where the Real money is going to be.



Full Article: Planetary Resources officially kicks off its asteroid mining venture

Planetary Resources official site link: www.planetaryresources.com...


Thanks for posting this thread Op, some very interesting food for thought. S&F



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 11:25 PM
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Originally posted by crazyewok
reply to post by thruthseek3r
 


Yeah tecnologly is moveing fast but that just means we need more rare earths!

There is barely enough to go around now. A lot of scientits are claiming we are consuming 2 earths as it is! Its not sustainable. And that when billions are still liveing in poverty in the third world. If they start living the western good life too that means even more will be consumed


Earth if a finite space with finite resources and our population is growing along with our demand for resources to fuel our tecnology.

Its all well and good haveing the moral high ground and trying to be all hotey totey. But the fact is its just putting hard caps annd makeing thing for difficult to solve our problems. One on the biggest reasons for war and poverty barring religion is lack of resources, putting a cap on were we get them is just naive and hippieish and just shooting yourself in the foot.

Sayying we should not go into space until we sort our problems out creates a sef destructing spiral. Because if we can address the resources problem then we can solve alot of earths problems.



How would you suggest solveing the worlds problem? Because all I can see are these options:
Expand into space
Force a massive population decrease (you going first?)
Or go back to pre industrial life (So you getting rid of your modern appliances?)




What I find sad in what you wrote is you seem to see going into space as the only solution for the (right now), and the other 2 you mentioned looked to me like a NWO agenda which I hope you do not seriously consider. As for going to space I am all for it, do not get me wrong, but i doubt as a specie we are ready for such a huge step considering how it is on earth as you can see it..

The solution is something which encompasses many many variables so I can not give you the answer right away, I would need a whole team of people just to get to the tip of it. That being said, it does not mean it is impossible, simply it takes time, and this is exactly what I think we need before going into space : time.

Do not forget who would get the true real advantage of going into space whith our current politcal regime and how it works, us the people, you and me or the elite which runs the globe right now ? It is the question which needs to be asked before taking any final decision.

I understand though what you mean and I see a great potential in it, but in a short span of time, I think it would be more detrimental than beneficial considering the current level of evolution of human kind right now.



Thruthseek3r



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 11:28 PM
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Originally posted by crazyewok
reply to post by MysterX
 


No i agree we have only skimmed the suface of earths resources. But the rest seem to be in hostile countrys that dont want to share or in places were we would have to damage the enviroment to get at.


If we mine NEOs at the very least it would releave some of the enviromental problems of strip minning ect as you cant pollute a astroid or hostile planet.


Could you be more detailed as to what you consider as a hostile country? I would need more precision on this very part from you if you could.



Thruthseek3r



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