Savvy guys. With a name like ‘Firefly’ you have already ensured the worldwide backing of the scifi community forever. Now if you could just persuade those producers to bring back the Firefly series…..
Private industry is going where no conglomerate has gone before. Into their wallets to pool enough money for a space program of their own. The earth has been depleted of resources but other rocks out there are untouched. True, its only research and design so far but projects are expected in earth orbit by as early as 2015.
Asteroids are especially rich in elements that are rare here on earth. The Eros asteroid alone contains trillions of dollars worth of gold, platinum and berrylium. A single iron asteroid could supply enough iron ore to meet the annual needs of the United States.
The early solar system was a chaotic place. Asteroids are leftover rubble from the creation of our solar system. They never clumped together and formed into planets like the earth. Asteroids have remained relatively small and unchanged for billions of years. Large rocky bodies like the earth gathered enough material to become very hot. The earth then acted like a spherical furnace. Gravity drawing the heavier elements towards the core and forever out of reach for humans. Asteroids having never gone through all this have similar elements to the earth but those elements are more evenly distributed. Asteroids are gold mines!
So the rich are going to get vastly richer as usual and the gap between rich and poor continues to grow. Robots will do the bulk of the work out there so don’t go applying for an asteroid miners license just yet.