Those of us RTS fans who have played Homeworld might be familiar with the scope of resource gathering from asteroids. However, this time it is not just about the mere ambit of science fiction and video games. 'About to' start up company Planetary Resources is already considering plans for our next generation resource gathering technique, which would encompass the expansive scope of space.
Now, the whole project may seem to be 'aiming for the moon', but believe us; its goal lies even further beyond that. In fact, the company's list of advisers include some pretty big names like Larry Page, Eric Schmidt, James Cameron and the former Microsoft chief software architect (and space tourist) Charles Simonyi. And, they are working it out to tap natural resources in space, which supposedly has the potential to create trillions of dollars in revenues.
In another related study done by Keck Institute for Space Studies (KISS) at the California Institute of Technology's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the researchers concluded that resource gathering from steroids could be possible by 2025. However, the very first flight may cost in excess of $2.6 billion.
But, given the adverse scope of resources getting scarce in Earth itself, this overtly ambitious project may not be a bad idea after all. In this regard, the company founder Peter Diamandis has already voiced his concern on the rate of depletion of our power sources. He has even gone on the say that the resource capacity of Earth is insignificant as compared to their abundance in space.
And, this is exactly where the endeavor would come into motion, where advanced techniques can be utilized to gather and house resources (from space) in the form of oxygen, hydrogen, fuel and even water. Moreover, in some cases, drilling for fuel in asteroids can be more feasible than the immensely difficult task of drilling for oil and gas in deep waters.