#24 April 1989
Section 188.8.131.52.024.of the Artemis Data Book
MMM # 24
by Peter Kokh
Even some hefty books on the Solar System dismiss the asteroids with a mere page or two. Yet there is a lot to say about them and we won't be able to do the whole topic justice all in this issue. But we hope to give you some insights you'll find nowhere else.
While much attention is now given to Earth-approaching asteroids easier to reach than those in the main Belt, we do want to point out some interesting possibilities for the Belt's 'big three' that other writers have missed.
We'll only have space to hint at the many fascinating cultural and social aspects of some future 'Belter' civilization, but that will give us excuse to do a future follow-up issue.
TWO PESKY QUESTIONS FOR DEBATE
First, will Earth citizens' fears, justified or not, of possible collisions with asteroidal bergs being brought back by mass driver, lead to the herding this harvest to one of the Earth-Sun Trojan or Lagrange points instead of to near Earth orbits? If so, a whole complex of space colonies might be located out there, processing the incoming ores into manufactured goods for shipment to the Earth-Moon area.
Second, will environmental concerns about using mass drivers for propulsion result in requiring them to maintain debris stream exit velocity sufficient to escape the solar system so that we don't have orbiting clouds of shot to add to space travel hazards?
Contents of this issue of Moon Miners' Manifesto