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OT: New Source for Unobtainium...NASA to Start Mining Asteroid!

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  • OT: New Source for Unobtainium...NASA to Start Mining Asteroid!

    Ran into some news this weekend that perhaps some here might find interesting.
    Looks as though we may have some new alloys to play with in the shop if NASA has any say about it. Look for more on this in Obama's budget to be released later this week.

    Several stories on the subject here.
    Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
    Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

    Location: British Columbia

  • #2
    One of the potential materials is astainium, which would be able to handle some heat ok, but has a peculiar sewage-type odor- a related material is hemo-roidium, an iron based material.
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

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    • #3
      Ahem!

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      • #4
        Basically science fiction. Our ability to harness energy is infantile compared to the robust needs of any space enterprise. Recent reference suggested energy requirement to orbit a given mass is
        ~1000x that needed to fly an equivalent cargo on a say a 737. We are going to need some significant break throughs, so it will be a race between STEM and national economics. With TSHTF in
        about 15-20yrs, it seems more likely that the pres and NASA will deorbit the space station in the 2020s, unless the Chinese or Indians want it.
        Steve

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        • #5
          Originally posted by sch View Post
          it seems more likely that the pres and NASA will deorbit the space station in the 2020s, .
          The US only owns part of it and the other may have something to say about it.
          The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

          Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

          Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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          • #6
            Yea, but the North Koreans will probably end up
            negotiating a treaty for it in return for no nuclear
            war on south korea and a signed autograph picture
            of Lenard Nemoy.
            I cut it twice, and it's still too short!
            Scott

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            • #7
              Seems to me that mining an asteroid would be so prohibitively expensive that at present it would be ludicrous. I can't forsee any advance in technology over the next couple decades that would make it reasonable. On earth, without having to send anything into orbit or bring it back down either, the cost of procuring the material and energy needs are already 'astronomical', as is the cost of building factories, etc. Building a factory in space is bound to be orders of magnitude more expensive, and the difficulties are magnified many times as well. I have to lump a lot of this talk in with flying cars and anti-gravity machines, free energy schemes, etc. I'm not against dreaming big, but at some point this stuff has to 'come down to earth'.
              I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

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              • #8
                There are plenty of asteroids in orbits similar to Earth. The velocity differences are minimal. Changing the orbits enough to orbit Earth will not require a great deal of delta-vee. Planetary Resources already has plans in motion including considerable private financing in the billions.
                Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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                • #9
                  Just wait for a big one to hit the earth..Woolaa. Dig it up..in a million or so years after we come back I guess. That may need rethunked me thinks after second thought.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by j king View Post
                    Just wait for a big one to hit the earth..Woolaa. Dig it up..in a million or so years after we come back I guess. That may need rethunked me thinks after second thought.
                    They're already doing that in Sudbury Ontario. They mine nickel from one of the largest impact sites on the planet.

                    Is it the weekend yet???
                    My cup 'o plasma: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1vMfmhM9fg No dialog, just ten minutes of dancing plasma and music. Turn on, tune in, space out.

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