Check out this video – Profits in Space! Entrepreneurs Are Scanning the Cosmos for Big Money. Glenn Reynolds interviews Chris Lewicki, CEO and Chief Asteroid Miner at Planetary Resources.
A few highlights:
- Platinum group metals exists in higher concentrations on asteroids that on earth. Perhaps at dozens of times the concentration.
- More useful is the water. Can be broken into molecules and used for propulsion. Professor Reynolds says it’s golden – water to drink or raise food or break down to oxygen for breathing or break down to HO for fuel.
- A generation of entrepreneurs who have already made their fortune are interested. They are still innovative and can leverage off the groundwork provided by the US space program.
- Current focus is prospecting – looking at asteroids to find out exactly what is on them and doing a small amount of extraction.
If you want some background on what this private exploration of space looks like, check out a couple chapters of Army of Davids. My only caution is those chapters, like the entire book, will stretch your imagination so much that your brain will be hurting by the time you finish reading.