Space, the final frontier! It looks like people are finally stepping up to the plate to take on the next step in space exploration – mining? Okay, so maybe it’s not the next step in exploration but it’s still pretty cool. Within 2 years, companies hope to start sending out low-cost unmanned spacecraft into space which could eventually lead to the ultimate goal – asteroid mining in deep space for precious metals like platinum as well as other valuable materials.
Deep Space Industries – a future asteroid mining company’s – new video looks like an ad you’d see in a futuristic movie – think Starship Troopers or Back to the Future II. It’s exciting to take a look at what might be in the near future. There’s still a lot of work until then but it’s a pretty interesting idea. Funnily enough, I only started investigating asteroid mining after hearing it mentioned in one of the few episodes of Bones that didn’t piss me off (damn you Angela and Temperance!).
Asteroid Mining: Deep Space Mining for Resources
The profits from mining asteroids would be staggering. They’ve estimated that the one single asteroid in our solar system, 241 Germania, could have as much as $95.8 trillion worth of mineral inside it. I’m not too interested in the money though, as the fat cats aren’t gonna be distributing it but it could drop the price of rare metals and resources that are used for space shuttle design and fuel, thereby increasing the chances of future space travel. To infinity and beyond!
DSI is hoping to be the first company to achieve asteroid mining as well as well as building solar power stations in space. A member of DSI’s board of directors, Mark Sonter, has said: ‘Mining asteroids for rare metals alone isn’t economical, but makes sense if you already are processing them for volatiles and bulk metals for in-space uses.
‘Turning asteroids into propellant and building materials damages no ecospheres since they are lifeless rocks left over from the formation of the solar system. Several hundred thousand that cross near Earth are available.’
So within a decade they hope to start mining asteroids for metals and I, for one, can’t wait to see how that turn out.