25 April 2012, 04:22

Plans for asteroid mining emerge

LONDON. April 25. KAZINFORM Details have been emerging of the plan by billionaire entrepreneurs to mine asteroids for their resources, according to BBC.

The multi-million-dollar plan would use robotic spacecraft to squeeze chemical components of fuel and minerals such as platinum and gold out of the rocks.

The founders include film director and explorer James Cameron as well as Google's chief executive Larry Page and its executive chairman Eric Schmidt.

They even aim to create a fuel depot in space by 2020.

However, several scientists have responded with scepticism, calling the plan daring, difficult and highly expensive.

They struggle to see how it could be cost-effective, even with platinum and gold worth nearly £35 per gram ($1,600 an ounce). An upcoming Nasa mission to return just 60g (two ounces) of material from an asteroid to Earth will cost about $1bn.

The inaugural step, to be achieved in the next 18 to 24 months, would be launching the first in a series of private telescopes that would search for asteroid targets rich in resources. The intention will be to open deep-space exploration to private industry.

Within five to 10 years, however, the company expects to progress from selling observation platforms in orbit around Earth to prospecting services. It plans to tap some of the thousands of asteroids that pass relatively close to Earth and extract their raw materials.

The company, known as Planetary Resources, is also backed by space tourism pioneer Eric Anderson, X-Prize founder Peter Diamandis, former US presidential candidate Ross Perot and veteran Nasa astronaut Tom Jones.

The founders of the venture are to give further details in a press conference on Tuesday.

Full story

 Tags: Environment
Did you find a mistake? Highlight it and click CTRL+ENTER

Read also

Kazakhstan signs Paris Climate Agreement

ASTANA. KAZINFORM - Kazakhstan signed on Tuesday the Paris Climate Agreement at the UN headquarters in New York. The 31-page document was inked by Foreign Affairs Minister of Kazakhstan Erlan Idrissov who later met with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

User name:
Enter code:*


Popular

Balandin’s T-shirt and Golovkin’s boxing gloves to be auctioned in Borovoye
Ilya Ilyin joined Charity Tour de Burabay 2016
Kazakhstan, Pakistan to expand trade-economic ties
CIS prosecutors general to meet in Minsk 6 September Society
'Feel China' cultural activities kick off in Kazakhstan
Yellen imagines a future where Fed tinkers with inflation target
Magnitude 5.1 earthquakes strikes off Philippines Coast
We expect that Serbian companies will come to Kazakhstan to share their experience and technologies – President

BELGRADE. KAZINFORM We expect that Serbian companies will come to Kazakhstan to share their experience and technologies, President Nursultan Nazarbayev said after the meeting with his Serbian counterpart Tomislav Nikolić held in narrow and extended formats in Belgrade.    

Commented articles