X-Message-Number: 12137
From: Thomas Donaldson <>
Subject: more comments re asteroid mining versus asteroid collisions
Date: Thu, 15 Jul 1999 18:55:02 +1000 (EST)

For Rand Simberg:

As I said before, if we can deal with asteroid collisions earlier than 75
years from now I would be among those who would rejoice.

However it's far from obvious that a system which mines asteroids will be
able to FIND those asteroids likely to collide with the Earth. Such
asteroids, among other differences, may simply not be good choices as
sources of materials. For that matter, if a group is looking for good
sources for water (say) they have no reason to restrict their view to
asteroids which might collide with the Earth. They would do far better
to look at a wider range. To find those asteroids likely to collide,
we'll still have to do a special search aimed at those asteroids and
only those. Just who is going to do that search? 

Ultimately we'll simply have to wait and see. Clearly I think that it 
will take longer than you do, but I'm not going to argue that it will
necessarily take 75 years exactly. I meant that as an approximate number,
only. It still seems to me that 25 years is a bit short; I have given
my reasons.

It will be interesting to see how this issue develops.

			Best and long long life,

				Thomas Donaldson

PS: By the way, can you send me information about what your company is
doing? I've been interested in mining asteroids and private space travel
for a long time; I just haven't been active in it, feeling that cryonics
needed whatever help it could get far more.

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