Psyche

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John Clark

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Dec 29, 2021, 9:43:19 AM12/29/21
to 'Brent Meeker' via Everything List
Psyche is an asteroid between Mars and Jupiter with a diameter of about 140 miles, what makes it unusual is that it is thought to be made almost entirely of iron and nickel with even heavier elements like gold and uranium at its core. At today's prices if Psyche were sitting on the Earth it would be worth about 10^19 dollars, by comparison the entire world economy is only worth about 10^14 dollars. NASA is going to launch a robot spacecraft to Psyche in August 2022, but it won't get there till January 2026.

Meanwhile things are still going OK with the James Webb telescope, although it is right now entering its most critical phase, the unfolding of that huge but delicate sun shield. 

John K Clark    See what's on my new list at  Extropolis
psq

Lawrence Crowell

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Dec 29, 2021, 1:48:57 PM12/29/21
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Asteroid mining is one possible route for humanity to enter the solar system We will not bring the whole thing here, but possibly we can bring loads of it. The surface gravity would be about .018 gees or .18m/s^2. Escape velocity is around √GM/r = √(2gr) ≃ 49m/s. That is close to the speed of a baseball fast pitch.

The heat shield unfurling is a problematic phase.

LC

spudb...@aol.com

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Dec 30, 2021, 7:24:35 PM12/30/21
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I have looked at Psyche 16 for about 5 or 6 years. Economically, depending upon a lot of factors, being able to utilize the rare earths and precious metals from Psyche 16, as you have indicated. could provide what I would term, JC, say an annual annuity for a human species displaced (in my imagination) by automation. It would also create trillionaires and quadrillions maybe? But lets not drive out the good with the bad. Plus, there's lots more valuable junk in the solar system, and if we throw in the Oort cloud/Kuiper Belt, plus the Asteroid Belt, we're talking cash on barrel head for our who species for tens of millennia.  Also, some interesting places to live-if you are among the richest. 


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spudb...@aol.com

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Dec 30, 2021, 7:50:05 PM12/30/21
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The cheapest way imagined by me, is to use automation to extract goodies from psyche using solar power or nuclear fission for any further-out mining bodies, or use solar power sats to collect and beam the electricity via microwave, laser, or maser, to wherever the manufacturing will occur? NEO or L2, or tween Mars and Jupiter (asteroid belt) and then send the ingots back to earth orbit. (nuke rockets or photon sails for the return journey) Getting the goodies back on earth to my mind could be done by simply using automated shuttle craft (X-37 tech) and land at air ports. Other proposals would be to use parachute landing of the valuables in the Indian, Atlantic, and Pacific. Last, of course are space (Artsunatov-Clarke) elevators manufactured from graphene composites (coal) that rise up some 23000 miles.  How likely is that? Don't ask!  Closer in is the Moon which has collected deposits of water and minerals for the last 4.5 billion years. A primo source for mining, radio astronomy, tourism, etc. 


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