This may sound like science fiction, but not really if you ask NASA.
NASA is so confident about this bold plan that it has included it in their budget request for 2014.
To start with, the agency wants a robotic spacecraft to “lasso” a 500-ton asteroid and tow it closer to the Earth.
“The idea is to bring it back to place it in Earth orbit, around the moon actually, to be a stepping stone for humans to explore out into space,” said Dr. Louis Friedman, who led a study at Caltech’s Keck Institute for Space Studies in Pasadena that looked at the feasibility of the mission.
Is man now trying to alter the creation of God of the heavens?
Well, not really, but modifying what can be done, with the knowledge that scientists have about space, for the good and survival of mankind, this ambitious and expensive plan should be further supported and realized.
Not only will it give man the opportunity to study and verify the resources found in the asteroid, but equally important is being provided with an outpost deep into this boundless frontier for a better planet Earth defense.
According to Friedman, the asteroid in the mission would pose no danger to Earth, but the giant ones in space can be a threat, which is why this mission is important to explore, if only to prevent the errant ones from entering the Earth’s atmosphere.
Although a lot of work and research still needs to be done, a launch can happen by 2017 and astronauts may be able to bring back an asteroid by 2021, according to the scientist.