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b_a_t_m_4_n t1_jd5hitd wrote

For an asteroid to be useful for interstellar travel it has to be moving really fast. Which means we have to catch up with it. And if we can catch up with it, we don't actually need it. There's no benefit.


Beaver_Sauce t1_jd5qp0r wrote

This is exactly the right answer. If you can catch it you have already done all the work and expended the energy to match it's course. You need nothing else. The asteroid would provide zero benefit. This is pretty easy to explain even in calculous.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5jjyq wrote

Now I kind of disagree with the premise that we don’t need it, it could become a ship of it’s own, though with even more added benefits like : protection from radiation and very small asteroids, they contain much of the materials needed for human survival and manufacturing, meaning you could potentially take less equipment with you on the initial departure and instead manufacture sensory devices later on.


VertigoOne1 t1_jd6gn2r wrote

Yeah your right, their forgetting that you match speed, but not mass, millions of tons versus 10. Take everything you hope you need and build a cozy home. It might even be rotating a bit giving parts of it some gravity.


thatwasacrapname123 t1_jd6mr9h wrote

But the down side is its too big to steer or slow down/speed up effectively. You just got to hold on.


b_a_t_m_4_n t1_jd71pqp wrote

For all that to be true you need to have the power to lift all the heavy machinery required for mining and refining and building sub-surface habitats etc, and then accelerating it to the speed of the interstellar asteroid.

If you have all that sort of delta V available that buys a metric fuck tonne of radiation shielding.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd8t3ku wrote

For sure we are a ways off but perhaps you send smaller rovers that manufacturer these instruments once on board the asteroid, perhaps just deploying enough raw materials to give them a start.

Voyager for example just ran out of gas. As is expected. This is an issue you’d need to solve in such types of travel. Asteroids seem like a possible solution


Some_Canadian_Man t1_jd6hy7z wrote

What if instead of trying to put people on there we put a small device designed for extreme accelerations. It would simply need to be in the path of the moving body. After that, it can hitch a ride and leave the surface when it's ready to wonder space at high speed.


Some_Canadian_Man t1_jd6icjr wrote

P.S. The fastest body in our solar system goes 200,000mph, or about 0.03% the speed of light. At this speed, it will take about 13,400 years to reach the next sun, assuming it ever arcs in that direction (if I got the math right - I ignored relativistic effects since it's so slow).


b_a_t_m_4_n t1_jd71zr0 wrote

For a body to be going fast enough to be useful in any non-generation sense the asteroid would need to be traveling at a non-negligible portion of c. Anything we could build would be vapourised.


Some_Canadian_Man t1_jdbglzp wrote

When I die, me and God are gonna be having some serious conversations about this seemingly restrictive design choice.


b_a_t_m_4_n t1_jdcdcgi wrote

While you're at it ask him why is the blood supply in front of the retina? And why give us so many teeth that we regularly have to take some out? What an idiot.


Dreholzer t1_jd6go0f wrote

I disagree, it’s a great idea, we just need to wait for the right one… with a Tv, refrigerators and sh*t…


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5jkla wrote

Now I kind of disagree with the premise that we don’t need it, it could become a ship of it’s own, though with even more added benefits like : protection from radiation and very small asteroids, they contain much of the materials needed for human survival and manufacturing, meaning you could potentially take less equipment with you on the initial departure and instead manufacture sensory devices later on.


FallenShadeslayer t1_jd5onoi wrote

What are you even talking about? Turning an asteroid into a ship? What? You need to chill out with the science fiction.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5osmc wrote

Lmao, haven’t we landed a probe on an asteroid before?


scorpyo72 t1_jd5qt2s wrote

We have, but you're talking about interstellar (as in between the stars, or solar system to solar system) travel. The majority of the asteroids we have access to are locked up in the belt between Mars and Jupiter. We occasionally see comets, but they're not stable enough to sustain is, and then we have the forementioned need to get going at least as far as it is.

Something like ʻOumuamua, the "interstellar" object that moved through our solar system a few years back would be more on track with what you're thinking of. But that doesn't mean we could catch it. ʻOumuamua was 'tumbling' , as in it didn't have a fixed axis we could really locate to even think about trying to run up alongside it.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5r9xl wrote

Bennu was going 67,000km/h

Oum is something like 20,000km/h faster.

We can’t do it yet.



scorpyo72 t1_jd5rl4k wrote

Well, I'll just live out the rest of my life over here while you're waiting for another interstellar object to pass by our planet, in our lifetime.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5ou5b wrote

Wait, are you talking to me through your handheld computer? Please, the science fiction.


FallenShadeslayer t1_jd6a1dm wrote

….That’s your reply? I get you’re a kid, but a smartphone and making a spaceship out of a freaking asteroid could not be further apart.


MaekusMikolous t1_jd5ls68 wrote

Dude how is prospecting minerals, processing them, and then manufacturing materials, and then making them into useful products a good idea to be doing on an interstellar mission.

Please just submit.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5maih wrote

Making the initial payload lighter so that you would be able to send a number of rovers to develop a more sophisticated operation, once actually on the object, rather than trying to land the entire operation there, all in one go. Which would require heavier payloads with = harder to get to such speeds.

Getting off the asteroid is just as much an issue as slowing down an independent spacecraft that has reached similar speeds and makes an interstellar journey. How do we slow down? Wouldn’t we need fuel and propulsion just as we got up to the same speed so to board the asteroid initially, or to slow down an independent spacecraft.

At least on an asteroid you can mine for the fuel and create a rocket.


MaekusMikolous t1_jd5pqa6 wrote

Okay, we can get up to the speed of the asteroid ourselves, we don't even need it!


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5qf12 wrote

I explained it in other comments and I cba reiterating but I think there are more benefits than just matching it’s speed with a single craft


OnlyAstronomyFans t1_jd5xqis wrote

Why wouldn’t you just stay in the ship that you built that already had enough Delta V to escape the system? I see what you’re getting at but why would you want to do it? The thing would be moving so fast you would spend so much energy trying to catch up to it then you’d have the complication of trying to land on it and hope that it fits your needs. All those pictures you saw of those previous interstellar objects were just artists depictions. Nobody could image them well enough to know what they were made of or what their spin rate was, really anything about it, other than its speed and trajectory.

Unless we’re already really good at interstellar travel, what you just described is the suicide of whatever crew was on that ship


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd62vkq wrote

A quick answer would be protection from space debris. More land with which to make the space craft more reinforced and with which to potentially build further technological instruments, or even live on if that was a possibility.

Even so. It could provide avenues for slowing down the payload once reaching the destination. If you could mine for fuel, that’s a win.


OnlyAstronomyFans t1_jd64lq3 wrote

This is going to be my last response to you because I am positive that you’re trolling us, trying to get karma so you can post spam in other subs that have rules about new accounts posting.

That said but the only reason anyone would do this would be because they wanted themselves and all of their descendants to live on that asteroid forever. You would need insane technology just to get to the interstellar object, let alone land and mine it. For sure it is not anything that would happen in either of our lifetimes. Fairs seas, my little troll.


Nopants21 t1_jd64187 wrote

I think you're imagining a much larger asteroid than what is common. Oumuamua was at most a kilometer long and it was considered a large enough object. Most fly-through objects are much too small to be mined productively and also hold together well enough to act as shielding.

On top of that, the amount of stuff you'd need to mine it is also much larger than you might think. You need refining, production, maintenance, energy, and the rovers you're sending need precision tools to create precision installations. Think of the amount of mining that goes into making a single rocket on Earth, it requires several countries working together for every rocket launch, each with a power grid, an industrial base, a workforce, etc.

As a last point, if the object is going fast enough, staggering your operation so that it's not all in one go makes it so that everything needs to occur in a short timeframe, because the object is zipping out of the solar system pretty quick. By the time you see the object, calculate where it's going, get everything organized, you might have missed it.


hdufort t1_jd5gtd2 wrote

To gently land on something, you have to match its speed.


EarthSolar t1_jd5jwlz wrote

I swear we had this same proposal before except it was with comets. What’s with people suggesting we hitch a ride on passing rocks?


hdufort t1_jd5k2bq wrote

They should play KSP. They would find out the "hard" way!


scorpyo72 t1_jd5r8ax wrote

Seriously. SR 2 taught me about travel in 3 dimensional space


EarthSolar t1_jd5jx1z wrote

I swear we had this same proposal before except it was with comets. What’s with people suggesting we hitch a ride on passing rocks?


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5nutv wrote

Indeed, though this would be easier since you could send multiple smaller payloads that coalesce on the object. Not only this, if you somehow managed to mine and create small scale industrial works, you could maybe even make the fuel to bloody get off asteroid.

If you decided to send humans they could live inside the asteroid as a fortress from the elements, as a place from which to further develop the asteroid as a spacecraft itself. Creating many of the sensory instruments and propulsion technology or fuel, spaces for living aka creating agriculture and processing essential gasses.

If you ask why would you send humans on such a journey? Why would you send them on a voyager 1 like journey? You wouldn’t, you’d send them to a desired location, like near a habitable planet. Only it seems easier to me to do it this way than to try and send a single manned ship.


pmMeAllofIt t1_jd5y2e6 wrote

How is the object going in a desired location. The chances of it's trajectory being exactly where we want it to be is unlikely. But even so, we manage to hitch a ride. Oumuamua at it's perihelion was doing 87km/s, but climbing away from the Sun slows it down. From what I see it will average about 26km/s. At that speed it will take 15,000> years to leave the solar system, and about 50,000 years to reach the nearest star.

As crazy as it sounds, it's not fast enough.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd62qcb wrote

Not oumuamua specifically, just an omuamua like object. As an example that such a thing does exist.


pmMeAllofIt t1_jd65yd2 wrote

The point stands. Come back in a hundred years or so, but it's like asking to hitch a ride on a log to cross the Atlantic, but the log is in China.


Nerull t1_jd63gc2 wrote

Asteroids are not traveling nearly fast enough to be useful to transit from one place to another.

Realize you're talking about transit times measured in millions of years.

Even at these slow speeds, we basically get one shot to intercept it before its out of reach. There is no time to slowly launch many smaller probes to it, or build up a base on it.


reddit455 t1_jd5f8f2 wrote

took the biggest rocket we have to send the mass equivalent of a Honda Civic to fetch a sample. problem is, you have to CATCH UP first.


OSIRIS-REx traveled to near-Earth asteroid Bennu and is bringing a small sample back to Earth for study. The mission launched Sept. 8, 2016, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The spacecraft reached Bennu in 2018 and will return a sample to Earth in 2023.


>could mine the asteroid for all of the materials needed for survival. This could allow say a small spacecraft to fully colonise the comet and fortify it for long distance travel.

not anytime soon.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5htn1 wrote

Exactly we are on the path to being able to fully operate on such objects. I can’t see why landing an unmanned vehicle on an object (OSIRIS-style) like oumuamua and hitching a ride on this 87,000km/h travelling bus. Or at least why we aren’t trying to do that ASAP.

Like couldn’t you land so much sensory technology, even telescopes on such a thing?


ImhereforyourDD t1_jd5k0r1 wrote

I think you’re missing the point is that the comet isn’t an energy point. Be it a feather or a bus at the speed is the same speed. You don’t need to catch the bus to transport it, it’s fine to travel on no it’s own. Rocket gets it to speed and there is no air resistance


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5kzb4 wrote

I mean it could allow you to send multiple smaller payloads to the asteroid and allow it to act as a central ship. You can carry a smaller payload either way if you could figure out how to mine and manufacture on such a body. You wouldn’t need the object to be as heavy with shielding materials etc. If the project was sophisticated to carry humans you could develop essentially a colony and sensory instruments once actually on the asteroid. You could mine for elements and there are many.


KilgoreTroutPfc t1_jd5j830 wrote

You could in theory, but you wouldn’t want to. First you are entirely at the mercy of its random trajectory, sure you could nudge it around, but it’s generally going to be headed into deep space, away from any solar energy source. If you had fusion power you could be okay for energy. But if you wanted to turn it drastically, it would require more energy than it would take to just accelerate a space ship in that direction at the same speed.

The main problem is that even if it happens to be pointed exactly where you want to go, it’s not necessarily going to get you you there faster or more efficiently than just building your own starship.

If the asteroid is going really fast, you’d have to build a ship that catch catch up to it and match its speed. If you have that, you don’t really need the asteroid apart from resourcing mining.

If it’s going as fast as modern rockets currently allows, then riding on it wont get you there faster than just staying in the ship.

It wouldn’t solve any problem except providing a far greater reservoir of resources, and not a very good one. What you really want from fusion energy is hydrogen. It’s not efficient to extract hydrogen from rock.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5q143 wrote

I wouldn’t worry so much about turning the asteroid so much as I would be worried about getting off when i’m where I want to be. But at least in my scenario you could get off how you got on and you don’t need to take enough fuel with you to get off, you get it when you’re on the asteroid


PigSlam t1_jd5kwpx wrote

The only advantage I can think of would be maybe for some level of gravity afforded by the mass of the asteroid, but it would have to be a big asteroid to give anything useful, and that would mean steering it would be that much harder.


Macktologist t1_jd5m112 wrote

So you’re saying we would need the protomolecule?


OnlyAstronomyFans t1_jd5yqe2 wrote

My man should just hop on Eros, maybe he can talk the Ring entities into going interstellar instead of to Venus


Diesalotwpg t1_jd5m7k7 wrote

Aside from all the other points raised here the odds of finding any body travelling through our system that will also interersect another system in any non-geological time scale is infinitesimal. Space is too empty and extra-solar objects are too rare.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5n0gv wrote

I mean we had Oumuamua it feels like yesterday. And I know it isn’t the only one of it’s kind.


Strange_Flatworm1144 t1_jd5thw8 wrote

And where is it going? What resources does it contain? Is it even stable enough for mining, "colonizing" or propulsion? Were we able to catch up with it and land on it like on Bennu, an asteroid in our ecliptic plane whose orbit is relatively easy to reach from Earth?

We can't even send people to Mars and have them survive there.

It would be way easier (but still very hard to impossible) to go find a fitting asteroid in our neighborhood and turn that into a spaceship and accelerate it out of the solar system when everything is in place, than trying to catch a ride on some unknown object on a pretty unknown trajectory.


Diesalotwpg t1_jd5vvwk wrote

The last study I saw estimated 7 interstellar system objects of Oumuamua's type per year Even if they were all suitable for conversion to a long term space craft, that's only 7 chances per year of an object on a trajectory that will intersect with something worth travelling to.

Oumuamua was fast relatively speaking. It was about 3 times as fast as the vehicle sent to the comet. Which means that Oumuamua was travelling at 0.0127% of the speed of light. So it will take 8000 years to travel 1 light year.

There are only 12 to 15 stars within a 10 light year radius of earth. So assuming we can build an 80,000 year craft out of our asteroid (when we can't build a dishwasher that lasts 5 (not a specific example, honest)), the chance of finding one on a suitable trajectory is effectively zero.


Designer-Wolverine47 t1_jd6s08f wrote

It would really suck if, half way through your 80,000 year trip, the humans you left behind developed a way to go 10,000 times as fast...


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd63c8x wrote

I mean there could be more, just invisible. Could use gravity assists to reach further ones.


Diesalotwpg t1_jd6cdgc wrote

Even if we were to somehow detect a thousand more possible targets within that radius, I'm afraid we make no appreciable dent in the odds of finding an object on a viable trajectory. You are looking at a sphere with a surface area of 3142 square light years. So let's say the diameter of these targets is about 120 AU (a rough number for the radius of our heliosphere). That gives us an area of 0.000000215 square light years. That's a pretty tiny bullseye.

Although your comment about gravity assist implies that you are no longer interested in using the existing speed of the asteroid as you would need to manoeuvre it to slingshot around a gravity well, likely spending orders of magnitude more energy to do so than you have 'saved' by using an already moving object. At that point it would be be cheaper and easier to just build your space craft.


bensimwiththeshot t1_jd6a5qy wrote

Dude you just don’t give up. I have already read at least 5 really well explained reasons why this little fairytale of yours simply will not work or serves no beneficial purpose. You just keep going man like a little kid that just keeps on saying “but, but, but, what if this what if what if that”. Here’s something to remember whenever you think you have come up with the ultimate idea. There are many, many people much more intelligent than those of us writing comments on reddit. So intelligent, that anything you may think you have all figured out I can almost guarantee you has been thought of and proved as a no no. Give it a rest my friend. Cool idea but it just doesn’t make any fucking sense for us earthlings to do.


wjbc t1_jd5f3fa wrote

Asteroids in the Solar System are in orbit around the Sun. The orbit may be wildly different from planets, and much more erratic, but it's still an orbit.

A better question is whether we could use asteroids for interplanetary travel. That's actually a possibility in the future, but it's beyond our present capabilities.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5g5o7 wrote

True, I was kinda hoping my question encapsulated local travel too.

Don’t some pass through the solar system? And never return. Particularly at certain speeds?


GreenAdvance t1_jd5hl8h wrote

To reach the asteroid you would have to match it's vector and speed at which point your space craft is already on an escape trajectory and doesn't need the asteroid to leave the solar system.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5i5yb wrote

True however living inside the asteroid provides a source of many (all) needed materials, protection from the elements of space etc... land for farming, industry.


blisteringmeat t1_jd5ror0 wrote

How does the inside of an asteroid have land for farming? This is one of the stupidest things I've ever come across. Protection from the elements of space? How? you've dug in to the asteroid!

Put the bong down.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5s18p wrote

Aka space and access to materials that could allow for farming


blisteringmeat t1_jd5sg0s wrote

Materials from what, the asteroid? What is this magical asteroid, that is somehow travelling exactly where you want it to be going, made of?

Using your smooth brain logic, why don't we just attach big engines to one side of the Earth and use the entire planet as a spaceship?


bensimwiththeshot t1_jd6ak81 wrote

Yooo lmao thank you for calling this guy out. I keep scrolling and he just keeps going on and on no matter how many reasons ppl tell him his little fantasy makes absolutely no freakin sense. “You have land for farming on the inside of the asteroid”. like whattt 🤦🏻‍♂️🤣🤣🤣


Icy-Conclusion-3500 t1_jd5hl5t wrote

If that asteroid has enough velocity to escape orbit, the lander would have to reach that velocity as well. Basically nullifies any gains of landing on it.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5iqsd wrote

I believe there being no other benefits is untrue. Such a body carries water, metals etc. Regolith, couldn’t that be used as a soil like substrate for some kind of farming? Even if not, the terrain itself could still be used to provide the space for farming, processing of materials and manufacturing tasks. Maybe the initial craft never launches with a telescope but manufactures one on-board the asteroid. Perhaps a small scale human colony? Inside the asteroid, protected from at least some radiation?


Insteadly t1_jd5lk17 wrote

You do realize that we’re sitting on a perfectly good planet that is already on an interstellar journey through the galaxy? Just sit tight. The sun is orbiting the galaxy at half a million miles per hour. It will take 200 million years to make one orbit.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5lvrb wrote

Everything else is also moving though, some coming towards us, some moving away.


Insteadly t1_jd5po8i wrote

That’s true even if you’re on an asteroid. Everything is moving.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5qlf4 wrote

Indeed so it’s not like stars can get closer or further away from our sun very easily or quickly, from our perspective anyway.


Beaver_Sauce t1_jd5q85j wrote

If you could generate enough delta-V to match the velocity then the asteroid would be useless. You have already done all the work. It would even be a hindrance because it would almost certainly not be going exactly where you want to go. Thus costing an immense amount of propellant and fuel.


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Brain_Hawk t1_jd637v6 wrote

This is a really good point that didn't occur to me right away, but it's totally true.

At that point the asteroids only helpful if it provides something more. And frankly, the second part release skills it as not worth the time and effort, hop on an asteroid and go... Nowhere


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5qilh wrote

I cba reiterating but I think there are many more benefits. Look at my responses to the top comments


BoridePa t1_jd5f2ue wrote

Terrifying thought to be shot out into the void of space for all of time in hopes of finding another planet to colonize.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5fu0w wrote

Realistically as someone else said you could attach an autonomous craft to land on the asteroid. Though I imagine this usage could extend to humans too, given the difficulty of space travel either-way,


hdufort t1_jd5h2he wrote

An excellent novel on that topic is "Pushing ice" by Alastair Reynolds. But it's not on a natural asteroid... It's on a spaceship asteroid that is set to travel both n deep space and in deep time...


Syquest15 t1_jd5h70c wrote

Slowing an object down relative to ourselves for mining would be possible with alot of energy.

However the unstable nature of such objects make them a poor choice for habitation. Not to mention the massive solar radiation spikes you will get when passing too close to the sun.

Mining asteroids near a belt would be better as they aren't hurdling through the solar system.

Mining another planet Is the best option.


sifuyee t1_jd5j8p5 wrote

The other issue is that once you've caught up with it, you're now stuck travelling where it's going, which is unlikely to be toward any nearby star, so now you're just hanging on getting yeet'd out of the solar system into the great void between stars.

So even if you did spend all the effort (enormous, many stage rocket, very very tiny delivered payload to match the object's velocity) you're not necessarily going anywhere interesting. The only thing working for you in this scenario is you are sitting on a big pile of potential resources for building something else. But even then you need to build quickly as your access to abundant sunlight to power any construction is going away quickly as you leave the vicinity of the sun.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5k0sj wrote

Hey, reaching great speeds and then slowing down is just as much a problem as actually getting off the craft.

I mean, you would choose an asteroid with a desirable trajectory.

Yes, the object could be boarded by multiple smaller spacecraft with specific payloads.

In terms of mining before you leave the sun, perhaps only a certain level of mining is essential, like for certain gasses. Even still maybe you send enough payloads that mining isn’t much of a necessity.


Due-Studio-65 t1_jd5l6x9 wrote

If its moving fast enough to be useful, how would you set up a colony in the time you could access it?


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5lch7 wrote

You would likely need to send multiple spacecraft at the same time to the object. Couldn’t nuclear energy get us a long way once we’re actually on the object? This would be a notch in favour of making a colony that could become self sustaining if properly prepared


Brain_Hawk t1_jd63jzf wrote

Asteroids are not typically that large, of course there's exceptions. But the gravity on this supposed intersolar object would be almost definitely miniscule. Finding a very large asteroid passing through the solar system seems to be rare, as far as I am aware, though I admit my knowledge here is very limited

So why would anybody want to live on such an asteroid? It's not going anywhere fast. The nearest star intersection is likely to see will be somewhere in millions of years in the future. So all these people are going to go live on this asteroid which is basically living in outer space with no gravity, which will have all kinds of problems for your body, and now they're cut off from the earth and have to live in a small self-sustained society which is by its very nature going to have extraordinarily strict rules and limit people's personal freedom to be huge degree, limit what you can do what you can see if you can talk to, definitely limit who you can sleep with and how much population you're allowed to grow.

Also that in a few million years maybe it will pass through some of the solar system that may or may not have some useful thing to visit?

Nah. That's not a mission that's going to happen even if it were feasible


Nerull t1_jd646f7 wrote

Not really. For interstellar asteroids you're looking at transit times between star systems measured in millions of years. Nuclear power isn't going to last that long. Frankly, neither is human technology. If people did somehow survive on an asteroid for millions of years, they wouldn't have any cultural memory left of how they got there or why and they would have evolved to be substantially different than humans on Earth - which they might find at their destination anyway, if Earth humans develop faster propulsion methods.


gadget850 t1_jd5lchw wrote

But where is it going and how long will it take to get there?


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5lln1 wrote

Depends on where you want to go, like choosing which bus.


DrSartorius t1_jd5md4f wrote

bus is passing you with speed 94000 mph

jump on it


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5mu7u wrote

I mean we landed on Bennu.

Just saying, not me personally- just to clarify.


OnlyAstronomyFans t1_jd63rds wrote

At this point most of us have realized that either you’re trolling us or you’re too simpleminded to grasp the basic physics of this.


DrSartorius t1_jd5lwmo wrote

primitive question for you - what speed supposed to have that "asteroid" (which can leave solar system)


[deleted] OP t1_jd5z4bo wrote

Imagine you travel for 50 years but fall off the Astroid. Now you’re in the middle of no where lmao


HondaVFR96 t1_jd66h4t wrote

"If you don't know where you're going, any direction will do"


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PandaEven3982 t1_jd6cshw wrote

Whatcha gonna breathe and eat and no more fish on friday. What do ya do for energy when you go interstellar. We could send robots except they aren't smart enough.


hw_convo t1_jd6graz wrote

Theorically yes, realistically (ressource spending wise) no. We're barely back at having a foot in orbit. Oh and the middle of a right wing vs left wing cold war again. Not to talk about east europe. Climate change's knocking home to roost too.


space-ModTeam t1_jd6yeul wrote

Hello u/Majestic_Pitch_1803, your submission "Couldn’t we land on an asteroid that is passing through our solar system and use that as a vessel for interstellar travel?" has been removed from r/space because:

  • Such questions should be asked in the "All space questions" thread stickied at the top of the sub.

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Postnificent t1_jd8btwx wrote

OP doesn’t understand the absence of resistance in space.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd8k6n4 wrote

No, I’m not suggesting you need to keep accelerating. The speed aspect is only one reason you might want to save on the fuel you take, how do you plan on slowing down? If you could somehow mine the asteroid for fuel, this may be a possible solution.

You could also send smaller payloads that all reach the ship more easily and coalesce to fully establish sensory instruments and research stations. Rather than trying to get one heavy ship to a high speed and then somehow slowing it down.


Postnificent t1_jd93k29 wrote

So catch up with the asteroid then speed it up? What’s the benefit? Mining it? Now you are describing a space mining venture not a means of transportation. I thought you were trying to use the velocity of the asteroid to travel. The only way to slow down in space is reverse propulsion or impact. Speeding up is rather simple, expell propellant. Your idea is just a mining operation. (We probably already do this, I don’t trust the news anymore than old Mother Hubbard)


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd9lw4n wrote

Protection from space debris, mining as a key point but not the whole point.

Sitting inside the asteroid would surely provide protection from radiation.

Ability to have multiple smaller payloads more easily (due to less weight) meet this required speed to board the asteroid and coalesce to form a much more complex operation once on the asteroid. Meaning even achieving that speed at all is made far easier.

Manufacturing propellant for the departure from the asteroid at the end of the mission.


Postnificent t1_jd9nx8d wrote

The only way the asteroid would offer protection from radiation is if it was hollow and made of lead, gold or water. The asteroid itself would likely be radioactive if you were mining space fuel for an interstellar journey. Hiding ships within meteors could have tactical advantages but why not just build the ship to look like a meteor?


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd9opzh wrote

Heavier to launch all that stuff and have it accelerate to such speeds

You have to get rid of radioactive waste sure. But surely that rock is no more radioactive that most other rock


Postnificent t1_jd9pod7 wrote

Ships like the ones you are speaking of must be built in orbit, we don’t have the technology to launch them without them coming apart yet.


xzeion t1_jd5ey5e wrote

At the very least I imagine we could land a probe on one or even tether to it as a means of getting the probe going very fast before it even starts to use it's fuel


Nerull t1_jd628wl wrote

Landing a probe on one doesn't save any fuel, because the probe has to match the trajectory of the asteroid in the first place - which means its going wherever the asteroid is going already.


A40 t1_jd5gznc wrote

And send that multi-billion dollar probe (and passengers?) off on a multi-million year journey into .. space.

But not another star. Those things aren't going 'somewhere,' they're just 'going.'

And since we'd have to rocket the probe up to 'interstellar asteroid' velocity (committing it? a suicide run?) before the thing passed us by, the 'resources' available to the probe/astronauts on the thing would be a complete guess.


kennedy311 t1_jd5m21h wrote

You're asking the right kind of question, even if this particular set of answers don't prove encouraging.


Majestic_Pitch_1803 t1_jd5ng8u wrote

Indeed I like that the idea is challenged, but also the people answering must know that someone could revise my plan and make it better very easily.