Exploitation of NEOs
Future exploitaion of an asteroid?
Courtesy of SSI
Comets and asteroids are not only
hazardous objects. They can also be considered as exploitable
objects, that could becom a precious source of raw materials and
fuel. In fact, asteroids are rich of raw
materials required on Earth (iron, metals, sand...). On the other
hand, comets are precious for their contents in water and
carbon-based molecules. Cometary ice could then provide liquid
hydrogen and oxygen (two primary ingredients for rocket fuel)
becoming real "gas stations" for interplanetray
Presently, such missions are not cost effective, but let's wait and see..
Mining an asteroid... (drawing courtesy of NASA)