Fat Louis - August 6, 2014
An Odd Thought
Fat Louis

The day has finally come — Capreol is joining the space race.

Okay, that’s a bit of an overstatement … but not as much as you might think. According to local media (and their own website) the new owners of St. Mary’s school, Deltion Innovations Ltd., is hoping to take “one giant leap for mankind” and is pulling our town into orbit by association.

NASA’s long-harboured plan to return to the moon — perhaps with a permanent base — hinges on mining the lunar surface. Carrying air and fuel for a long stay is costly, but making both while on the moon? Not so much. That’s where Deltion (an award winning mining equipment design company) comes in — developing innovative machines to work in space.

Creating “Unique” mining equipment is nothing new for the Deltion team, they’ve spent years specializing in small, efficient, light weight systems for extreme environments … both planetary and non-terrestrial (aka. off Earth).

Deltion is working alongside NASA and the Canadian Space Agency to design and build new drilling technologies as part of the planned 2018 Lunar Resource Prospector Mission. Other machines are capable of clearing debris (think Moon Plough) and lifting rocks (like a lunar backhoe) — necessary steps prior to a permanent stay — either by remote control or via pre-programmed orders

The dream doesn’t stop with visiting the moon. Mars is the next logical step in human expansion. The same harsh realities face Martian colonization — the impracticality of carrying air and fuel, the hostile environment, working at long distance — only magnified a hundred-fold. Deltion is looking to the moon, Mars, and even … beyond.

The Holy Grail of space mining lies even further out. Metal-rich asteroids, several of which lie between Mars and Jupiter, hold immense promise. Rare earth metals (like Platinum — current market value $1400+) may be so plentiful that they could supply all human needs for centuries, possibly millennia. It’s just a matter of getting there and doing what the Sudbury area excels at — ripping mineral wealth from rock.

So what if these particular rocks are travelling through space, free from the constraints of earth’s gravity? That’s merely a detail … one NASA (and to a lesser extent the CSA) is working to overcome.

It won’t happen tomorrow or even the day after, but someday humanity will begin making use of space as more than a tourist destination and science lab. Just as industry made Northern Ontario (trapping, lumber, mining, etc.) it will fundamentally change how we approach space. And Deltion Innovations LTd. — along with its new hometown of Capreol! — is getting in on the ground floor.