Re: Humans doomed without space colonies, says Hawking

From: Adrian Tymes (
Date: Thu Oct 18 2001 - 20:37:19 MDT

Samantha Atkins wrote:
> Why bring the metal and volatiles from a near-earth asteroid to earth?
> They would be quite useful in building something interesting in space
> without having to haul so much up the gravity well.

True. But you also need to pay the people who design the stuff to
build up there, not to mention paying for the mission that snatched the
asteroid to begin with. Some of the metal could be kept up there; pure
economic necessity means that at least some, and perhaps most (at
first, until there is enough of a market for stuff built in orbit to
use even a large fraction of the metal in a single asteroid) of it will
be brought back down to Earth.

Keeping 'em up there becomes more feasable for the later asteroids.
But we need to get from here to there before we're there.

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