Planetary Assets reveals plan for prospecting asteroids, creating interstellar fuel stations

Planetary Resources reveals plan for prospecting asteroids, creating interstellar gas stations

The cat acquired let loose of the bag somewhat early, however Planetary Assets has now formally introduced its existence and mission. We already informed you that the enterprise plans to mine asteroids for revenue, and is backed by a bunch of bigwigs from Silicon Valley and Hollywood. However now we all know a bit extra concerning the firm after watching its announcement webcast and talking with co-founder Peter Diamandis. Seems, the corporate sees itself not solely as a enterprise enterprise, however as an entity that may pave the best way for extending human affect all through the photo voltaic system. Learn on after the break for extra.

Positive, Planetary Assets is hoping to seek out big chunks of platinum and different valuable metals and minerals in area, however its first precedence is discovering asteroids wealthy in water. You see, water is probably probably the most useful useful resource within the cosmos not solely as a result of it is wanted to help life, but in addition as a result of it may be damaged down into hydrogen and oxygen — which simply occur to be the right rocket propellant. So, the plan is to seek out these H20-wealthy rocks in our photo voltaic system and use them as fuel stations to gasoline additional exploration and allow the mining operations that comply with.

To seek out its quarry, Planetary Assets will not merely be pointing a rocket on the nearest asteroid and hoping for the most effective, as an alternative, its plan is to construct a collection of spacecraft to determine and prospect close to-earth asteroids. These spacecraft, dubbed the Arkyd collection, will probably be low cost (1/one hundred the price of present craft), small and light-weight (round 20kg), and will probably be deployed in swarms of as much as 20 at a time. It is a new approach of area exploration that depends on redundancy to ameliorate the danger of failure, as an alternative of pouring appreciable assets into one (hopefully) fail-proof car. Plus, the corporate anticipates that its inevitable errors will assist it iterate quickly and enhance the spacecraft know-how from mission to mission. A part of the rationale Planetary Assets thinks it’s going to be capable of adapt so shortly is that it is leveraging and creating leading edge know-how with a small engineering employees of a pair dozen people.

Planetary Resources reveals plan for prospecting asteroids, creating interstellar gas stations

First up is the Arkyd one hundred Collection, a low earth orbit telescope — able to seeing as much as ninety million miles away in ultimate lighting circumstances — to seek out asteroids value prospecting. It is also going to be made obtainable as a personal area telescope, initially costing round $three-5 million with the worth dropping accordingly ought to clients proliferate sufficient to scale back manufacturing prices. As soon as applicable asteroids are recognized, then the Arkyd 200, a powered model of the one hundred with further instrumentation, shall be deployed to intercept the asteroids and collect extra detailed knowledge on their contents. As soon as the very best high quality targets are discovered, then the 300 collection, with its superior laser-based mostly communications, will set to work surveying the “asteroid’s form, rotation, density, and floor and sub-floor composition” in preparation for mining to start. Up to now, Planetary Assets has neither revealed the way it will truly excavate these asteroids nor the way it’ll deliver the doubtless billions of dollars value of cargo again to earth, nevertheless it’s simply getting began and the corporate claims that it will be attainable by leveraging unnamed future applied sciences.

The present plan is for the primary one hundred Collection launch to occur in 18-24 months, and for the primary asteroid targets to be surveyed by the top of the last decade. When requested how the corporate was going to get its Arkyds into area, the corporate would not say what launch car can be used. Peter Diamandis advised us that he’s, naturally, fairly keen on SpaceX’s Falcon 9, however it’s not the one choice into account — the Arkyd craft are sufficiently small to hitch a experience on different satellite tv for pc launches as a secondary passenger, so devoted launch automobiles will not be needed. Regardless of these (comparatively) cheap spacecraft and launch choices, there are questions as to how the corporate will generate profits within the brief time period. To not fear, stated co-founder Eric Anderson, as the corporate has accomplished its funding and already counts NASA as a buyer of the Arkyd 300’s optical communications know-how.

Will Planetary Assets achieve opening up an interstellar freeway and unlocking untold riches in our photo voltaic system? Nobody can say for positive, however we all know we’ll be watching its progress with nice curiosity, hoping for future devices comprised of stuff present in area.

Present full PR textual content

ASTEROID MINING PLANS REVEALED BY PLANETARY RESOURCES, INC. Increasing the useful resource base of humanity to incorporate the photo voltaic system

Seattle, Wash. – April 24, 2012 – Planetary Assets, Inc. introduced at the moment its plan to mine Close to-Earth Asteroids (NEAs) for uncooked supplies, starting from water to valuable metals. Via the event of value-efficient exploration applied sciences, the corporate is poised to provoke prospecting missions concentrating on useful resource-wealthy asteroids which might be simply accessible.

Useful resource extraction from asteroids will ship a number of advantages to humanity and develop to be valued at tens of billions of dollars yearly. The trouble will faucet into the excessive focus of valuable metals discovered on asteroids and supply a sustainable provide to the ever-rising inhabitants on Earth.

A single 500-meter platinum-wealthy asteroid incorporates the equal of all of the Platinum Group Metals mined in historical past. “Most of the scarce metals and minerals on Earth are in close to-infinite portions in area. As entry to those supplies will increase, not solely will the price of every part from microelectronics to power storage be decreased, however new purposes for these plentiful parts will end in necessary and novel purposes,” stated Peter H. Diamandis, M.D., Co-Founder and Co-Chairman, Planetary Assets, Inc.

Moreover, water-wealthy NEAs will function “stepping stones” for deep area exploration, offering area-sourced gasoline and water to orbiting depots. Accessing water assets in area will revolutionize exploration and make area journey dramatically extra economical.

“Water is probably probably the most invaluable useful resource in area. Accessing a water-wealthy asteroid will significantly allow the massive-scale exploration of the photo voltaic system. Along with supporting life, water may even be separated into oxygen and hydrogen for breathable air and rocket propellant,” stated Eric Anderson, Co-Founder and Co-Chairman, Planetary Assets, Inc.

Of the roughly 9,000 recognized NEAs, there are greater than 1,500 which might be energetically as straightforward to succeed in because the Moon. The potential to characterize NEAs is on the crucial path for Planetary Assets. To that finish, the corporate has developed the primary line in its household of deep-area prospecting spacecraft, the Arkyd-one hundred Collection. The spacecraft shall be utilized in low-Earth orbit and finally assist prioritize the primary a number of NEA targets for the corporate’s comply with-on Arkyd-300 Collection NEA swarm expeditions.

Chris Lewicki, President and Chief Engineer, stated “Our mission isn’t solely to increase the world’s useful resource base, however we need to improve individuals’s entry to, and understanding of, our planet and photo voltaic system by creating succesful and price-environment friendly techniques.”

“The promise of Planetary Assets is to use business innovation to area exploration. They’re creating value-efficient, manufacturing-line spacecraft that may go to close to-Earth asteroids in speedy succession, growing our scientific information of those our bodies and enabling the financial improvement of the assets they include,” stated Tom Jones, Ph.D., veteran NASA astronaut, planetary scientist and Planetary Assets, Inc. advisor.

Planetary Assets is financed by business-launching visionaries, together with Google CEO Larry Web page and Ross Perot, Jr., Chairman of Hillwood and The Perot Group, who’re dedicated to increasing the world’s useful resource base in order that humanity can proceed to develop and prosper:

· Eric E. Schmidt, Ph.D., Government Chairman of Google, Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Planetary Assets, Inc. investor: “The pursuit of assets drove the invention of America and opened the West. The identical drivers nonetheless maintain true for opening the area frontier. Increasing the useful resource base for humanity is necessary for our future.”

· Okay. Ram Shriram, Founding father of Sherpalo, Google Board of Administrators founding member and Planetary Assets, Inc. investor: “I see the identical potential in Planetary Assets as I did within the early days of Google.”

· Charles Simonyi, Ph.D., Chairman of Intentional Software program Company and Planetary Assets, Inc. investor: “The commercialization of area started with communications satellites and is creating for human spaceflight. The subsequent logical step is to start the revolutionary improvement of assets from area. I am proud to be a part of this effort.”

The corporate’s advisors embrace movie maker and explorer James Cameron; Basic T. Michael Moseley (Ret.); Sara Seager, Ph.D.; Mark Sykes, Ph.D.; and David Vaskevitch.

Based in 2009 by Eric Anderson and Peter H. Diamandis, M.D., Planetary Assets, Inc. is establishing a brand new paradigm for useful resource utilization that may convey the photo voltaic system inside humanity’s financial sphere of affect by enabling low-value robotic exploration and eventual business improvement of asteroids. For extra info, please go to

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