ow would an abundance of wealth so vast enough to make every soul on Earth a billionaire sound? A complete fantasy, but the truth is that this fantasy might become a reality. NASA has confirmed it’s launching a mission next year to explore an asteroid worth a whopping $10,000 quadrillion – enough to theoretically make everyone on Earth a billionaire. The 140-mile-wide asteroid that orbits the Sun between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter is the target of the Psyche mission’s survey. According to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the metal-rich Psyche asteroid “appears to represent the exposed nickel-iron core of an early planet.”
However, what makes this asteroid so expensive? Space itself is full of them and it almost destroyed our planet several billions of years ago. The asteroid is made of substances that are comparable to those found in the core of our own planet. According to Forbes, Psyche may have a core made of iron, nickel, and gold that is worth 10,000 quadrillion dollars. The current global economy is $74 trillion, nothing compared to the worth of this asteroid. NASA has even made a website where they describe the mission and why Psyche is so important.
Deep within the terrestrial planets, including Earth, scientists infer the presence of metallic cores, but these lie unreachably far below the planets’ rocky mantles and crusts. The asteroid Psyche offers a unique window into these building blocks of planet formation and the opportunity to investigate a previously unexplored type of world.NASA/Psyche
Earlier this year, NASA’s mission was supposed to launch, but “mission development issues” caused the space agency to miss the designated launch window. An internal assessment of “whether the mission will be able to overcome these obstacles to successfully launch” the following year followed.
The launch date has not been confirmed to be October 10, 2023. With high hopes, this could change the whole world for the better.
JPL Director Laurie Leshin also said that she was ‘extremely proud of the Psyche team’, adding: “During this review, they have demonstrated significant progress already made toward the future launch date. I am confident in the plan moving forward and excited by the unique and important science this mission will return.”
This is the first time NASA or humanity itself will be exploring a planet that is made of Iron. This makes scientists at NASA excited as they may even find new types of iron which do not exist on Earth. It is important to remember that this is an estimation as until they do not drill into it, they cannot tell what sort of resources it may hold.