Asteroids in general, selected NEOs in particular , are source of resources and wealth readily available in space. At the same time some of them may even be a threat to our planet in the event that they could be in a of collision course with our planet. To capture a small 30 to 50 meters diameter asteroid, deflect it it to a desired trajectory,and utilize its resources to transfrom it in a profitable busines activity is the major challenge that we must face. Such asteroid, properly equipped can be used for the following: -a space based launching station -a cycling transportation system between the Earth, the Moon, Mars other destinations -by using its interior a human travelling settlement -a source of materials with mineral processing and manufacturing facilities to supply large components in space -an impact body to deflect incoming asteroids in collision course -mining faclities in space -a refueling and logistic center in desired space location -a traveling probe to transmars destinations and several others. The suggested way is to send a retriever vehicle that , through a deployable metal exostructure will rendez-vous and dock from behind to the asetroid. The deployable structure will capture it, like a large basket, secure additional docking points by drilling its surface and securing hold, and by two engines , located at opposite ends of the virtual line that pass through the center of gravity of the system , bi thrust vectoring engines, giving small successive lateral pushes, deflect the asteroid to a desired trajectory. Alternatives to the metal exostructure could be an inflatable system with external rings and variable modular cylinders with semispherical cover that adapt its shape to the asteroid contours. Such system would be much lighter than the deployable exostructure while the docking can be guaranteed by the main vehicle itself.
Project InformationLicense: GNU General Public License
Source Code/Project URL: http://unispace.ws/index.php