The Force at work / La Force en action

The Force at work / La Force en action
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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

NEW KNOWLEDGE / NEW ECONOMY Part 1 : The Problem with Asteroid Mining

Le Cirque Noir © Lena Ghio 2014 Photographed July 18 2013. A strange creature is driving a sports car in the center.



Posted on November 19, 2014 by Dr David Kelly, Stephanie Flanders and Tai Hui

WorldView 4Q 2014

For many years I have worked at Molson Brewery now Molson Coors. I was present for many meetings and conferences by international business leaders and world bankers as they worked on financial strategies for the investments of large multinational corporations. I was awed by how far in the future their planning and calculations would venture.  When I read this quote this morning on JP Morgan’s site I felt compelled to respond to a project that has been nagging me.

I address this article to billionaires and ask them to consider where they invest their money with a bit more perspicacity, for their sake as well as ours. The problem with the opening quote is twofold and paradoxical. On the one hand there are real issues to deal with in the present that need down to earth solutions. On the other hand if you don’t look into the future consequences of your decisions, you could be creating needless catastrophes that will endanger us all.

The first case I want to look at is the one proposed by PLANETARY RESOURCES  to mine asteroids. I have argued about this with passionate friends who are blinded by the promise of the infinite riches buried in the celestial bodies. They are ready to leap without seeing if they have a foothold. Here I want to bring to the fore some new knowledge that is ignored by the engineers and investors in this case and that could have very serious consequences.

Planetary Resource is not wrong in its assessment of the endless riches available in the universe. It is wrong because it is not approaching the project with sound knowledge of the physics of the universe. Primarily, they do not know how to send a human body in outer space, in 0 gravity, for sustained period of time without that body withering away. They do not know how to create a plant ecosystem in outer space that would replenish the atmosphere and feed animals.

Secondly, they are totally oblivious to the impact the shift in mass could have on life here on earth. My experiment with amaryllis plants has shown that the way mass is distributed in the solar system affects the mass of plants. This is the knowledge that must be mastered by engineers, this understanding of how gravity and mass inform life, before they can begin the project. Those scientific fields of study that could assist the project have not even vetted this very novel hypothesis yet.

To be successful, scientists and engineers will need to master the Theory of Extra Dimensions. They are currently envisioning the project with the archaic flat-world view. On earth this works because we are familiar with our time of celestial mechanics, we are adapted to the cycles of the gravitational waves that mould our environment. But out there, we have no clear notion of how gravity will affect our perception of reality and our bodies at every level.

Have they calculated exactly how much natural resources will be needed to fly crews into space to harvest materials that may or may not return to earth? Can current standards of life support the transfer of these resources into such a costly endeavor?

Now lets say all this works out. It has cost billions and billions of dollars to do, it has used up billions and billions of dollars worth of natural resources. Who will have the money to buy all the platinum they will bring back? Will it still be such a desirable substance when the probabilities are that what we will need most of all is fresh water and fresh air?

Thirdly, how have they measured the human factor? Before the imagined luxurious Space Hiltons are built and operational with fresh water and oxygen mined from the asteroids, the project will need a large specialized workforce to get it done. If we remember past human exploits in uncharted territories, like the building of railroads in America for example, we know men die on these job sites. How many men will suffer and loose their lives to build these things? Have the liability costs been taken into account?

To be continued... BILLIONAIRES Let's talk about your art collection

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