Aug 18, 2020

NASA To Send A Spacecraft To Gold Asteroid That Can Make Everyone A Billionaire On Earth

NASA will shortly begin designing the newest spacecraft named Psyche. The NASA target will be a 226-kilometer long asteroid called ’16 Psyche.’ The spacecraft passed the ‘critical architecture’ process last month.If you are curious what’s so unique about this asteroid, well, this asteroid may be worth more than our entire global economy. Located in the asteroid belt of the solar system between Mars and Jupiter, the asteroid is unique object.

It is thought to be made entirely of metallic iron, nickel and gold core of a protoplanet. In case you didn’t know, most asteroids are known to be icy and rocky, and there’s nothing like 16 Psyche. Experts claim that the gold and other precious metals on the asteroid are worth $10,000 quadrillion.

That’s enough money to make every single person living on Earth a billionaire (in US dollars terms) right now. If this asteroid is mined for its wealth, it is worth more than the entire Earth’s economic system.

NASA is partnering with SpaceX to fly Psyche from Cape Canaveral Launch Pad 39A, with the aid of SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy spacecraft, sometime during August 2022. The spacecraft is scheduled to reach Mars in 2023 and travel into the asteroid belt by January 2026—so it’s a long ride.

NASA is now making three instruments — a magnetometer to measure the asteroid’s magnetic field, a multi-spectral imager to capture surface images, and spectrometers to look at neurons and gamma rays coming from the surface to learn more about how they are created.

The installation and testing is scheduled to begin next February and the hardware will be in JPL’s cleanroom by April 2021.

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