Asteroids such as this one (Vesta) could one day provide metals and water for Earth and to sustain continuous space exploration. PHOTO: Reuters via NASA
Here’s a little slice of awesome for you: in a plan to expand our mineral wealth and make continuous space exploration possible, a firm called Deep Space Industries Inc. launches today with the goal of mining space rocks for water and metals. Kinda bad ass, right?
"More than 900 new asteroids that pass near Earth are discovered every year," CEO David 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."
Yes, people are already using terms like “in-space industries,” like they’re already used to that idea.
Deep Space Industries’ plan is to use relatively small, unmanned space-crafts to inspect asteroids that fly close to Earth. The crafts will be around 55 pounds and called “fireflies” I seriously hope that’s a reference to this:
The fireflies will help identify targets for 70 pound ships called “Dragonflies” (which have no corresponding Joss Whedon show), which will take asteroid samples back to Earth to help the company determine further mining targets. The whole thing will involve live-cams and other ways for the space-curious to enjoy the fun from an atmosphere we can survive in. Fireflies are scheduled to launch in 2015 with Dragonflies heading out the following year.