Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Company to unveil fleet of asteroid-mining ships for deep-space colonies
FoxNews.com/Space.com ^ | 1/22/2013 | Mike Wall

Posted on 01/22/2013 5:56:37 AM PST by RoosterRedux

A new asteroid-mining company launches Tuesday with the goal of helping humanity expand across the solar system by tapping the vast riches of space rocks.

The new firm, called Deep Space Industries, Inc., announced Tuesday, Jan. 22, that it plans to launch a fleet of prospecting spacecraft in 2015, then begin harvesting metals and water from near-Earth asteroids within a decade or so. Such work could make it possible to build and refuel spacecraft far above our planet's surface, thus helping our species get a foothold in the final frontier.

"Using resources harvested in space is the only way to afford permanent space development," Deep Space CEO David Gump said in a statement. Deep Space Industries will hold a press conference today in Santa Monica, Calif., at 10 a.m. PST (1 p.m. EST/1800 GMT) to unveil more details of its bold mission plan; you can watch the webcast live at SPACE.com.

"More than 900 new asteroids that pass near Earth are discovered every year," Gump explained. "They can be like the Iron Range of Minnesota was for the Detroit car industry last century — a key resource located near where it was needed. In this case, metals and fuel from asteroids can expand the in-space industries of this century. That is our strategy." [How Asteroid Mining Could Work (Infographic)]

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Astronomy; Science
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 01/22/2013 5:56:42 AM PST by RoosterRedux
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

This will go nowhere without HUGE government subsidies and cronyism. He’s more likely going to tap Washington and our wallets than any asteroids.


2 posted on 01/22/2013 6:00:35 AM PST by ProtectOurFreedom
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

Later


3 posted on 01/22/2013 6:04:14 AM PST by fella ("As it was before Noah, so shall it be again,")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux
y13.jpg

4 posted on 01/22/2013 6:05:15 AM PST by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Mater tua caligas exercitus gerit ;-{)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

Solar powered smelters, forges, and foundries?


5 posted on 01/22/2013 6:06:19 AM PST by ecomcon
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

For some odd reason I have this gut feeling Muslims won’t be applying for the job of being space miners.


6 posted on 01/22/2013 6:06:24 AM PST by Eye of Unk (AR2 2013 is the American Revolution part 2 of 2013)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux
Let's find another planet as the socialists/democrats are ruining this one.
7 posted on 01/22/2013 6:07:52 AM PST by Democrat_media (media makes mass shooters household names to create more & take our guns)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

This is great!

I’ve written about this here on FR in the past.

As for a government subsidization, I don’t think so.

There are items that can be manufactured by robots in the zero gravity vacuum of space that cannot be created on Earth. These items, some of which will create another boom in hi-tech electronics, will fuel our economy just like mining shale has done for petroleum and natural gas production.


8 posted on 01/22/2013 6:09:55 AM PST by SatinDoll (NATURAL BORN CITZEN: BORN IN THE USA OF CITIZEN PARENTS.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux
Precious metals such as platinum will also be delivered to Earth for terrestrial use

some text

9 posted on 01/22/2013 6:14:18 AM PST by ecomcon
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ProtectOurFreedom
It's commercial. Some of these guys really don't want government involved.

/johnny

10 posted on 01/22/2013 6:15:04 AM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

We’re getting to the point in miniaturization and communications where missions like this can be conducted on a shoestring budget.


11 posted on 01/22/2013 6:18:57 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ecomcon

Better have some REALLY BIG batteries. Maybe they should consult with Boeing.


12 posted on 01/22/2013 6:19:45 AM PST by csmusaret (I will give Obama credit for one thing- he is living proof that familiarity breeds contempt.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: JRandomFreeper

Yup. Government involvement is more of a hindrance than a help and the money guys know it.


13 posted on 01/22/2013 6:21:43 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

This has some serious prospects. As an example, the near Earth asteroid “433 Eros” just 34km x 11km x 11km, passes fairly near to Earth, and importantly, is believed to have more platinum group metals than the entire crust of Earth, along with other precious metals.

It is interesting enough so that NASA has already landed a probe on it.

The concept of mining it envisions landing a nuclear powered spacecraft on it, almost certainly manned at first, but later robotic, whose purpose would be to partially concentrate metals into a large ball of ores, with the most precious of them in its interior, and surrounded by a thick layer of less valuable ones.

Because 433 Eros is rotating, the best way to return such balls to Earth would be to attach a signalling device to them, then reel them away from Eros on a long cable, using the centrifugal force to accelerate it to a good speed, then releasing it from the cable in the direction of Earth, where it would be recovered when it intersected the orbital path and returned to the surface.


14 posted on 01/22/2013 6:31:37 AM PST by yefragetuwrabrumuy (Best WoT news at rantburg.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: cripplecreek
We’re getting to the point in miniaturization and communications where missions like this can be conducted on a shoestring budget.

And it's still going to be cheaper to just get more Platinum out of mines on Earth.

These ventures will make Tesla, Fisker, and Solyndra look sound by comparison.

15 posted on 01/22/2013 6:36:46 AM PST by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Democrat_media

People have always had to escape government tyranny by learning to live in the wildernesw, this is no different.


16 posted on 01/22/2013 6:38:15 AM PST by GraceG
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: SatinDoll

Somebody needs to be offering legitimate and affordable mineral claims to help fund this sort of thing. Obviously the primary financier of the mission would get the biggest share. Its a shot in the dark but lots of people play the lottery.


17 posted on 01/22/2013 6:38:35 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist
Platinum is merely a by-product. The tons of volatiles is where the value is, because water produced from an asteroid doesn't have the launch overhead that everything we carry up now does. Right now water costs about $10K/lb to send up.

/johnny

18 posted on 01/22/2013 6:42:59 AM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: JRandomFreeper

We’ll wait and see. If it is purely commercial, they won’t be around long. But I expect that they’ll quickly run out of money and go begging at the government teat. All insane schemes do that.

It would be far cheaper to “mine” the garbage dumps on earth.


19 posted on 01/22/2013 6:44:04 AM PST by ProtectOurFreedom
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Democrat_media

Let’s find another planet as the socialists/democrats are ruining this one.

Agreed but I was thinking the leftists/socialists/democrat/progressives could go there instead. They could start that wonderful socialist utopian government they so long far and who knows maybe it will work this time. Riiiiight. They could tax and spend to their heart’s content.


20 posted on 01/22/2013 6:44:43 AM PST by Bitsy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: yefragetuwrabrumuy

The late Robert L Forward was one of the founders of Tethers Unlimited.

http://www.tethers.com/


21 posted on 01/22/2013 6:46:25 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux
I don't see a fleet, just one ship.
22 posted on 01/22/2013 6:48:59 AM PST by Lazamataz (LAZ'S LAW: As an argument with liberals goes on, the probability of being called racist approaches 1)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: yefragetuwrabrumuy
Because 433 Eros is rotating, the best way to return such balls to Earth would be to attach a signalling device to them, then reel them away from Eros on a long cable, using the centrifugal force to accelerate it to a good speed, then releasing it from the cable in the direction of Earth, where it would be recovered when it intersected the orbital path and returned to the surface.

Shades of Heinlein's "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress". Is there anyway we can aim one of these large balls at Iran, and just sort of "miss it" when it intersects the recovery area of our orbital path?

23 posted on 01/22/2013 6:51:07 AM PST by ClearCase_guy (Nothing will change until after the war.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

How do we know it’s not just some cover for surrounding the earth with space-based weapons?


24 posted on 01/22/2013 6:51:13 AM PST by stuartcr ("I upraded my moral compass to a GPS, to keep up with the times.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Eye of Unk

???


25 posted on 01/22/2013 6:52:13 AM PST by stuartcr ("I upraded my moral compass to a GPS, to keep up with the times.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: JRandomFreeper

As a resource for further scientific exploration of the outer solar system, asteroids are fine.

But nobody should kid themselves that they’re going to make money off asteroids in and of themselves - there’s no magical unobtanium like dilithium or naquada we’re going to get from them, and it’s always going to be cheaper to just go deeper on Earth, process less-rich Earth ore, etc.


26 posted on 01/22/2013 6:57:22 AM PST by Strategerist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: SatinDoll
There are items that can be manufactured by robots in the zero gravity vacuum of space that cannot be created on Earth.

Will these items retain their functionality once removed from zero gravity vacuum after manufacture?

27 posted on 01/22/2013 6:57:49 AM PST by varon (USA Nationalist)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: ProtectOurFreedom
This will go nowhere without HUGE government subsidies and cronyism. He’s more likely going to tap Washington and our wallets than any asteroids.

Exactly what I was thinking. All pie in the sky, with no plan for actual return on investment. It is clearly just a government grant repository.

28 posted on 01/22/2013 7:13:38 AM PST by SampleMan (Feral Humans are the refuse of socialism.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux
 photo PS_0832_EARTH_FIRST_zps2757a1bb.jpg
29 posted on 01/22/2013 7:17:14 AM PST by Raymann
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: varon
Will these items retain their functionality once removed from zero gravity vacuum after manufacture?

I think the point is to use them in a zero G vacuum for further research, prospecting, mining, construction etc. The single biggest cost of space exploration is launching from the surface of the earth. (the deeper the gravity well, the higher the cost) Burrowing and mining bots would be ideal for creating spaces for future habitats inside the asteroids.
30 posted on 01/22/2013 7:22:13 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: ClearCase_guy

Hell of a waste of platinum. For them, I’d send a big ball o’ slag.

But practically speaking, you can only roughly guess at where and when objects on a trajectory path with punch through the atmosphere. This is why they are always a little nervous when a large satellite reenters.

On a more practical note, if we still had a space shuttle, we could send it up with a cargo bay full of high tech ceramic bowling balls that would pretty much obliterate anything over a several square mile area.

A similar project, named “the rods of God”, was considered for a while, with the giant rods actually propelled by a rail gun aboard the satellite, and able to penetrate very deeply beneath the ground.


31 posted on 01/22/2013 7:22:23 AM PST by yefragetuwrabrumuy (Best WoT news at rantburg.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

These guys are the real deal. They have a Facebook page and everything. They have veterans of asteroid missions and leading edge leaders.

“Deep Space is a renaissance company, whose team combines veterans in space commerce, policy, asteroid missions, and risk management with young leading edge leaders from the “maker” and nanosat communities.”


32 posted on 01/22/2013 7:27:26 AM PST by running_dog_lackey
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: csmusaret
Better have some REALLY BIG batteries.

Outside the atmosphere, there are no cloudy days, nights or winters. Solar peak delivery, 100% of the time.

33 posted on 01/22/2013 7:30:35 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: thackney

It kills me to support solar but it works well in space out to a certain distance.


34 posted on 01/22/2013 7:33:37 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: cripplecreek

Solar is fine, as long as it provided without taxpayer subsidies.

We use solar power in select locations in the oil/gas industry. Some remote locations it is cheaper to have solar and batteries to work SCADA and maybe a motor operated safety valve, than build a fueled generation system.


35 posted on 01/22/2013 7:36:29 AM PST by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: GraceG
We've found a Planet named Galt’s Gulch where people own there own life, property ,rights and freedom and where government is almost nonexistent only the military and border control, where the free market and capitalism and innovation thrives without the millions of pages of government regulations and overlords. And no liberals/democrats/socialists allowed .Democrats can come but when they find out they have to work then they'll leave:


36 posted on 01/22/2013 7:51:35 AM PST by Democrat_media (media makes mass shooters household names to create more & take our guns)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Strategerist

I expected we would be mining the asteroids starting over 30 years ago. Pathetic it’s taken this long to get started.


37 posted on 01/22/2013 7:54:12 AM PST by Mogger (Independence, better fuel economy and performance with American made synthetic oil.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: Bitsy
We've found a Planet named Galt’s Gulch where people actually completely own their life, property ,rights and freedom and where government is almost nonexistent only the military and border control, where the free market and capitalism and innovation thrives without the millions of pages of government regulations and overlords. And no liberals/democrats/socialists allowed .Democrats can come but when they find out they have to work then they'll leave:


38 posted on 01/22/2013 7:54:41 AM PST by Democrat_media (media makes mass shooters household names to create more & take our guns)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: cripplecreek

Why is supporting a form of energy killing you? Don’t you like batteries, electricity, silica, heat, light?


39 posted on 01/22/2013 7:57:51 AM PST by stuartcr ("I upraded my moral compass to a GPS, to keep up with the times.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: Democrat_media

a Planet named Galt’s Gulch
I’m in. Beam me up:-)


40 posted on 01/22/2013 8:13:55 AM PST by Bitsy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: csmusaret
Better have some REALLY BIG batteries. Maybe they should consult with Boeing.

If you put them in space where they won't enter earth's shadow, batteries would not be necessary. The smelters themselves could be merely big mirrors focusing sunlight to the desired point.

41 posted on 01/22/2013 8:28:20 AM PST by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: cripplecreek
Somebody needs to be offering legitimate and affordable mineral claims to help fund this sort of thing. Obviously the primary financier of the mission would get the biggest share. Its a shot in the dark but lots of people play the lottery.

Yup.

Here's the Big Problem™: there is already a treaty covering space and everything in it, signed by the globalists and socialists in your government that considers all the mineral wealth in space to be the property of "all mankind". So in order to "legally" do anything like mine an asteroid, you'll have to pay off the criminals that run the U.N. I can't remember the treaty name, but it is written very similar to LOST. There are folks out there with very long time horizons who have been planning for just this type of thing, and they are going to want their cut.

42 posted on 01/22/2013 8:35:38 AM PST by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: zeugma

We signed the outer space treaty which doesn’t say much about private ownership in space but the moon treaty does. However we didn’t sign the moon treaty but our lack of opposition has in a sense made it defacto international law.

It does need to be overcome but it appears that many of the people working toward private space endevors are more optimistic than they have been in the past.


43 posted on 01/22/2013 8:45:14 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: zeugma

I’m thinking big machines; like excavators and haulers.


44 posted on 01/22/2013 8:49:33 AM PST by csmusaret (I will give Obama credit for one thing- he is living proof that familiarity breeds contempt.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: RoosterRedux

LIVE FEED COMING UP AT 1PM EST
http://www.space.com/17933-nasa-television-webcasts-live-space-tv.html


45 posted on 01/22/2013 9:57:31 AM PST by struggle (http://killthegovernment.wordpress.com/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ProtectOurFreedom
I can see where they would have to be in good odor with the government. Look at how nervous we were when North Korea launched a defunct satellite.
Currently, NASA has been talking about a mission to bring a boxcar sized near Earth asteroid to Lunar orbit. If I were the NASA administrator, I would offer 50% of the projected cost of that mission to whichever of the two nascent asteroid mining companies could bring back such an asteroid. This is how we got Spaceship One, whose descendant, SpaceShip Two, is scheduled to begin carrying paying passengers on suborbital trips later this year.
46 posted on 01/22/2013 10:05:31 AM PST by jmcenanly ("The more corrupt the state, the more laws." Tacitus, Publius Cornelius)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: zeugma
there is already a treaty covering space and everything in it...

Like that is going to hold up in court.

If I remember correctly, I laid claim to everything in outer space and beyond back in 1955.;-)

47 posted on 01/22/2013 12:16:39 PM PST by RoosterRedux
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: KevinDavis

Thanks RoosterRedux.


48 posted on 01/23/2013 4:17:20 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson