Connect to share and comment
Plans to mine asteroids for water and precious metals may be visionary but they have been met with skepticism in some parts.
A Washington State start-up including former NASA officials today unveiled plans to send robots into space to mine Near-Earth Asteroids, according to The Wall Street Journal.
More from GlobalPost: James Cameron, Google executives invest in space exploration project
The company has received financial backing from Google Chairman Larry Page and consulting form filmmaker James Cameron, whose 2009 film Avatar depicted mining on another planet.
ABC News produced this video report:
Collecting water from asteroids could make space travel more economical, the company said. “Of the approximately 9,000 known [Near-Earth Asteroids], there are more than 1,500 that are energetically as easy as the Moon,” the company said.
More from GlobalPost: Has Israel's regional isolation helped protect its economy?
According to The Journal, the initiative has been met with skepticism among experts.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Richard Binzel, an expert on asteroids, told the newspaper that, while he expects asteroids will eventually be used as tools in space travel, this project “may be many decades ahead of its time."
"But you have to start somewhere,” he said.