Was about to say what 93143 says above. Cheap enough energy should mean we can synthesize these hydrocarbon products.
Exactly and there are many ways to do that.
chrismb wrote:Raw materials just aren't there any more like they were. And if you have no industrial infrastructure, then you can't extract and make use of these deep, very lean deposits. Which means if we loose our industrial infrastructure we just won't have the raw materials available to access those remote deposits and recover again to a technological species. We'll be locked into the stone age until the earth's plates refresh the whole of the earth's crust, and more fossilised biomass hydrocarbon deposits reform.
Wikipedia wrote:According to Cassini data, scientists announced on February 13, 2008, that Titan hosts within its polar lakes "hundreds of times more natural gas and other liquid hydrocarbons than all the known oil and natural gas reserves on Earth." The desert sand dunes along the equator, while devoid of open liquid, nonetheless hold more organics than all of Earth's coal reserves.
Whereas the original images (except for a few pairs obtained at similar orbital phase, some of which we have mapped previously) were offset by as much as 30 km, the new versions align much better. The remaining misalignments, typically <1 km, can be removed by a least-squares adjustment of the spacecraft trajectories before mapping, which also ensures that the stereo digital topographic models (DTMs) are made consistent with altimetry and SAR topography profiles.
Saturn's moon Titan appears to be a very active place, with evidence of liquid hydrocarbon rains and surface features, along with things like mountains and dunes of some sort. But all of that's on the surface, and evidence has been building for years that something interesting is going on deep underneath it all. A paper that is set to be published in Astronomy & Astrophysics adds to the evidence that the "something interesting" constitutes a large liquid ocean that sits between the moon's surface and solid core.
chrismb wrote:You are thinking hundreds to thousands of years, whereas I am thinking that techno-man will be all but wiped out at the next ice age in a few 10,000's years. Will your iron ore stocks be enough to last Austria for 10,000 years?
chrismb wrote:Charles, I am right there with you on the question and worries of sourcing raw materials.
But I don't understand the connection with your commentCheap electricity from fusion = a dream to be devoutly wished. But like all great things, it will create problems as well as solve them, and it may not stop the end of industrial civilization.
What is the problem fusion energy would create, with respect to raw material supplies?
kurt9 wrote:Cheap energy allows for two things:
1) Synthesis of hydrocarbons by thermal process
kurt9 wrote: 2) Extraterrestrial resource utilization
The resources of the solar system are millions of times greater than those of the Earth. In short, cheap energy will eliminate the currently foreseen limits on economic growth.
Betruger wrote:If you have cheap electricity and space propulsion, you shouldn't need to return things to Earth. Just stay in space.
What I'd say will limit freedom of space bound expansion are trouble makers and government. Trouble makers will make it hard to argue that men can be free -unless governments manage to correspondingly ramp up their means of war-making/defense of their constituents- and governments, out of habit, will probably do their best to keep people under their control.
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