There's Helium-3 in them thar hills!!

Discussion in 'Trading' started by saxon, Jan 19, 2004.

  1. saxon


    The New Energy Patch and/or Battleground
    Reuters: January 18, 2004

    Outlining his election-year vision for space exploration last week, Bush called for a permanent base on the moon by 2020 as a launch pad for piloted missions to Mars and beyond.

    One unspoken motivation may have been China's milestone launch in October of its first piloted spaceflight in earth orbit and its announced plan to go to the moon.

    "I think the new initiative is driven by a desire to beat the Chinese to the moon," said John Pike, director of, a defense and space policy research group.

    The moon, scientists have said, is a source of potentially unlimited energy in the form of the helium 3 isotope -- a near perfect fuel source: potent, nonpolluting and causing virtually no radioactive byproduct in a fusion reactor.

    "And if we could get a monopoly on that, we wouldn't have to worry about the Saudis and we could basically tell everybody what the price of energy was going to be," said Pike.

    Gerald Kulcinski of the Fusion Technology Institute at the University of Wisconsin at Madison estimated the moon's helium 3 would have a cash value of perhaps $4 billion a ton in terms of its energy equivalent in oil.

    Scientists reckon there are about 1 million tons of helium 3 on the moon, enough to power the earth for thousands of years. The equivalent of a single space shuttle load, or roughly 30 tons, could meet all U.S. electric power needs for a year, Kulcinski said by e-mail.
  2. ig0r


    Let's hear the caveats :)
  3. saxon


    Well...there's the fusion thing...

    But "4 billion a ton" is the mother of invention.

  4. Can a single country claim ownership of the MOON though? My point is, can't other countries start up space programs and go to the moon to get H3, or will the U.S. monopolize that?

  5. That's actually old news
    scroll down to the bottom and see the reference to the story "Energy source from the Moon" but unless your a sub you won't be able to read the story.
  6. jem


    I claim owneship of the moon. So it can be done.
    Now how do I have others respect my claim. Well I guess a nulcear arsenal would help.
  7. bro59


    Isn't the sole purpose of "superpower" standing to allow you to lay claim to that which strengthens your world-standing? I assume we just take it. Of course, being on-site helps as possession is 9/10ths of the law.

    Interesting that the coming commodity competition is so rapidly being expanding to the farthest frontier by those so dull witted as politicians. Or perhaps I'm confusing a desire for blind and dumb flag waving patriotism with an intelligent vision for a secure future.
  8. I guess they first have to figure out how to make fusion work first.

    They've been at it for 30 years and have never reached break even point on an enery in energy out basis. Not even for one second.

    There is no guarentee that helium 3 would actually work.


  9. That's not entirely true, the classified results won't be known for years to come but the main problem (for the current direction) is materials. That is limited to this earth, hence the mission to mars and rock samples. Not everything is published.
  10. saxon


    It would be a real toss-up as to who is in the more relentless pursuit of a dollar: commodity traders, or politicians.
    #10     Jan 19, 2004