Ever since we humans have become part of this planet, we have been taking efforts to explore the various fields. The numerous inventions and discoveries seen in various fields have helped us in living a simpler and better life. But as goes the important concept of economics which is scarcity, it simply means that resources on our planet are scarce and hence the need to look out beyond this. One term which has attracted attention in recent times is asteroid mining which as the name suggests looking for resources from asteroids. The term asteroid mining itself sounds fascinating, but what is essential to mention here is that it appears to be the hope for future and is expected to help in increasing human prosperity.
The way elements like tin, phosphorus, copper, zinc, gold, silver and so on are being used up by humans, it has kind of created an alarming situation wherein these would exhaust in merely some decades let alone few centuries. With the minerals found in the crust of earth getting exhausted, the future of industrial activity would be something which has to be thought upon keeping this perspective in mind. Asteroid mining in the future does not only mean extraction of those minerals which are used in industry, but also of those which could be used in the growing of food and this may include phosphorus, organic carbon and also for fertilizer the other major ingredients. The most important aspect here is the unlimited availability of minerals which may be possible with asteroid mining. Wouldn’t this take care of the scarcity of minerals we face on earth?
The asteroids could be categorized into three main types namely, asteroids of C-type, S-type and M-type. A good chunk of asteroids fall in C-type and these are those which have water content and these are also regarded as carbonaceous and it is their water which could be of huge help. S-type asteroids are those the composition of which is made up of mainly of stone as well as iron. The asteroids which are rich in metals are the M-type asteroids and these are the rare asteroids. When such sources are available for extraction of metals and other non-metals, then it also means that the rate at which resources are being depleted from earth could be slowed down.
Though asteroid mining would come at costs, the returns expected from these would likely outweigh the costs and help in industrial activity as well as in growing food here on earth. This would thus help in enhancing human prosperity and also help humans in colonizing off Earth same time. This dual purpose would be served as resources from such sources would be unlimited. Conservation of resources of earth could be done if asteroid mining is carried out. The processing which would be needed for materials which are found in asteroids is believed to be less and this also means that there would be cost savings. With varied metals found in these asteroids, these could be of immense help in economic activities and thereby contribute to human prosperity. So in the future, asteroid mining could be of great help to us humans.