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#1 2019-10-26 06:10:28

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,868

Asteroid/off-Earth mining

Interesting video on asteroid and other off-Earth mining from Bloomberg:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGosZWBTF7A

I remain sceptical that we are on the verge of a space mining bonanza but there are some interesting lines of inquiry.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#2 2019-10-26 08:47:20

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,690

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

Sure mining is for profit bonanza but only if those that want the ore are willing to pay.

Here are the other topics which we already had
Asteroid Mining - profit from space

This one also includes its other uses along with mining it.
Colonizing / terraforming small asteroids

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#3 2019-10-26 09:30:56

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,690

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

What are the costs that make mining a profitable business or not is a topic to focus on.

Launch, power, equipment, easy of operation for ore percentage processing yeild, site return for selling of materials export regulation, plus more are just some of the discussing options that would cause the business to fold...

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#4 2019-10-29 19:06:55

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,510

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

For Louis .... a recent Space Show featured discussion of a free flying habitat that would be used for asteroid mining.

It's a stretch to put this post in your topic, but I'm hoping there is enough overlap so you will be willing to accept it.


Space Show:
https://thespaceshow.com/show/28-oct-20 … ny-longman

Anthony Longman graduated from Cambridge University and was licensed as an architect in the U.K. before relocating to Los Angeles where he worked initially in hands on house remodeling. This developed into a residential design practice covering 25 years, as well as collaborations in the film industry, high end litigation graphics and landscape design. In 2008 he became interested in space habitat design, focused on including landscape as a primary design driver. In 2013 he began a 6 year collaboration with Dr. Robert Skelton, the originator of the mathematics for engineering tensegrity structures, whose matchless efficiency makes them ideal for space applications. That year they were awarded a NIAC Phase I research grant to explore adding iterative structural expansion capability to landscaped rotating shielded space habitats. In 2016 an enlarged team including Dr. Joel Sercel of TransAstra Corporation was awarded a 2 Year NIAC Phase II grant to continue this research. Work continued for 12 months beyond the grant funded period, and the results will be published shortly in a report to NASA.

(th)

https://www.skyframeresearch.com/

EXPAT - Expandable Shielded Rotating Space Habitat
Growth from initial 8.5m pressure hull radius to 224m radius in 12 radial steps and 4 axial steps. 90 acres of managed woodland over 90 acres of urban outdoor mall space over 5 floors of apartments and commercial space. The mature habitat will feed and support a population of 8,000. Diurnal cycle shared between crop production in the side wall floors and habitable space in the interior. Light switching  reflectors send sunlight up the light shafts to the central reflector enclosing the zero-g industrial workshop. (This work is the end product of NASA funded research under the NIAC program, in collaboration with Dr Robert Skelton and Texas A&M University.)

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#5 2019-11-04 15:58:45

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 531

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

Peak stainless steel?

https://link.springer.com/article/10.10 … 019-0056-9

“This study shows that there is a significant risk that stainless steel production will reach its maximum capacity around 2055 because of declining nickel production, though recycling, and use of other alloys on a very small scale can compensate somewhat. The model in this study assumes business as usual for metal production and fossil fuel supplies (though the authors note that energy limitations are likely in the future, which will limit mining). If oil begins to decline within 10 years, as many think, shortages of stainless steel and everything else will happen before 2055.”

Nickel is naturally present in meteoritic iron at concentrations of about 10%.  It can be separated using carbonyl chemistry.  It is of more than academic importance that asteroid mining is perfected relatively soon.  It could make the difference between a prosperous future and a poor one.

Last edited by Calliban (2019-11-04 16:00:19)


Interested in space science, engineering and technology.

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#6 2019-11-04 17:04:49

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,690

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

Nickle is used for electronics for the purpose of oxidation and conduction as well as in batteries.

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#7 2019-11-12 18:52:50

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,510

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

For Louis re topic .... here is a paper from 1979 that appears to use a variation on Calliban's idea of spinning at habitat on an axis that runs through an asteroid.

Please note that the paper includes images that show the proposed propulsion system (for asteroid material to be sent to Earth) running on either (both) end of the axis of the asteroid.

http://www.star-tech-inc.com/papers/ast … eroids.pdf

ASTEROID RETRIEVAL BY ROTARY ROCKET* Jerome Pearson** U. S. Air Force Flight Dynamics Laboratory Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio 45433

Rather than expending 80% of the asteroid mass to bring back the remaining 20%, it may be more advantageous to launch larger masses with the proper velocity to return directly to the earthmoon system. In this case we might launch only 20% of the mass of the asteroid, but it would all be retrieved for use. This technique would have the advantage of producing the first payload in a matter of a year instead of 4 to 5 years.

I had the opportunity to attend presentations by Mr. Pearson on several occasions.  At the time he was working on tethers, about which he has published several papers.

(th)

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#8 2019-11-12 20:37:47

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,690

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

How the OST is interpreted is the issue for how a caim can be had, Of course you can claim what is in your hands but its harder to claim what is under your feet...

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#9 2019-11-12 21:08:57

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,510

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

for SpaceNut re #8

Thank you for boosting the topic!

For those who have not yet had time to review the paper by Mr. Pearson and associates, the suggestion is to disassemble the asteroid and send the pieces back to the Earth/Moon system.  My question for you is: Does the OST offer any guidance for this procedure?

My assumption is that the pieces of the asteroid flung toward the Earth-Moon system would be retrieved by associates of the miners, and that "ownership" of those pieces would be claimable (and claimed) by those associates.

A precedent already exists ... in fact, at least two precedents already exist ...

The Americans brought back material they collected on the Moon, and (for all intents and purposes) the Americans claimed ownership of those objects.

The Japanese brought back material from an asteroid, and I would be surprised if they do not claim ownership.

A third example (which I am less sure about) would be an American probe which (I think) brought back sampled material.

In any case, it seems to me that since precedent often sets the conditions for conventions which are adopted by society, the materials flung from an asteroid and collected in the Earth-Moon system by associates of the miners are likely to be recognized as "owned" by those taking possession.

(th)

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#10 2019-11-13 17:01:36

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,690

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

But while they did bring them home they are not for sale, are given as gifts and used for science. AS a government entity was used to bring the mission to full term of funding and selection.
If its gets no cash from the government, personnel in crew then maybe you can make the claim to be private and not sponsored in any form such that you can own what you take and sell it as you wish so long as the citizenship question is ignored for the nation that you come from. Maybe dual citizenship would cause a fight amoungst them to posess what you bring back and maybe not..

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#11 2019-12-02 19:44:14

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,510

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

The article at the link below reports on research that (apparently) shows increased lifetime for lithium batteries that use cobalt.

It also reports that cobalt is in short supply, and its procurement on Earth may be problematic.

For Calliban ...

I am hoping your study of asteroids (near Earth or otherwise) will help you to identify any which might contain sufficient quantities of cobalt to justify a venture to corral it.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/why-million- … 10953.html

(th)

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#12 2019-12-02 20:20:56

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,690

Re: Asteroid/off-Earth mining

Just one more reason to mining for export elsewhere makes sense as man reaches for the stars....

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