There is an asteroid worth 10 quintillion dollars located between Mars and Jupiter. This is a completely unique celestial body. The only metallic nucleus-like object discovered so far. And get ready, very soon a spacecraft will be sent to such a celestial body for the first time. So why is this object important? Why is it made of metal? And why are these metals worth $10 quintillion? Most importantly, what is a quintillion? Humanity has been after it ever since they realized it was rare. The rarer, the more valuable! Everyone is trying to have it. Gold! Yes, I'm talking about gold! How much gold do you think there is in the world? Let's think about it. If we brought together all the gold discovered throughout human history and made a cube. How much space would it take up? You may be surprised, but it is only 23 meters! Yes! It is approximately the size of a 7-storey building. If you don't believe it, the total gold discovered so far is not even 250 thousand tons/500 million lbs. But that's not all the gold in the world. Hmm… Things have changed now, haven't they? So where is this gold? Here is the solution for you. This is actually an image of the sky, the colors are reversed. So the black dots are bright stars. But there is something floating around, have you seen it? Just a tiny thing. When I say tiny, I mean tiny, about 220 kilometers/136miles long! It is almost the distance between Istanbul and Izmir. This is an asteroid: And Its name is 16 Psyche. One of the largest known asteroids in the solar system. Even though it didn't make it into the top 10, it's around that size. Look, this is the biggest one, this is the second one. The list goes like this. And 16 Psyche is somewhere right here. But its value is not very appreciated in this list. Because its value is more important than its size. What makes this asteroid different is what it's made of. Now, many celestial bodies in the solar system actually consist of rocky structures such as mountains on their surfaces, just like our Earth. But this asteroid is not like that. This is a metal-dense asteroid. Probably about half of it consists of metal. It has such a strange surface. Iron and Nickel covers everything. Of course, the story is not just about these two metals. It probably contains a lot of gold... Remember. We could fit all the gold we have mined in the world so far into an area of 23 cubic meters/87 cubic feets. But the size of this asteroid is not 13, not 136 inches, but close to 136 miles. Even if a small percentage of it is gold... According to calculations, the value of this asteroid, this celestial body called 16 Psyche, is many times greater than the global economy of the entire world. Let’s leave the gold aside. The value of the nickel in that asteroid alone is around 10 kentillion dollars. Of course, to sell all that metal, someone has to bring it all to Earth, which is almost impossible. Let's imagine that we actually brought this much metal to Earth, then it would be much more than everyone needs, and its value would decrease again. The economy works like this. However, since it has the potential to be one of the most important professions of the future, I am in favor of doing some calculations and thinking about it in order to draw attention to asteroid mining. We can write 10 quintillion dollars as follows: $10,000,000,000,000,000,000. We can also read it as 10 million million million dollars. It is thought that this asteroid, 16 Psyche, is actually the remnant of a planet that broke up while it was about to form in the very distant past. This planet undergoes a collision just as it is about to form the rocky structure that should normally surround it, like ours, flies away in space. What remains is the metal-dense core that we are trying to reach by digging. NASA is sending a satellite, a spacecraft, to Psyche very soon. The launch is currently set for October 5, 2023, but as always with any launch, delays may occur. I will try to broadcast it live, so please follow my Instagram for push notifications and check if you are also subscribed to this channel and turned on notifications. The name of the satellite that will be sent to that asteroid is also Psyche. This is a word that comes from Greek mythology and means soul. This spacecraft is equipped with state-of-the-art measurement equipments. Cameras placed to photograph Psyche, gamma ray and neutron spectrometers to analyze the chemical composition on its surface, and of course magnetometers to measure the possible magnetic field in such a metal structure. It also has antennas placed to make measurements about gravity and analyze its internal structure. uses the Xenon noble gas found in car headlights and plasma TVs. Thanks to the electrical energy it obtains from solar panels, it obtains thrust by converting Xenon gas into Xenon ions.
Researched and Written by: Ögetay Kayalı
Presented and Edited by: Barış Özcan
Full text of the video and sources used: