Prospect, Explore, Extract: AMC's 3-stage approach to asteroid mining.
Asteroid Prospecting Satellite I (APS-1)
AMC's first space mission involves the launch in 2025 of a microsatellite space telescope to a sun-synchronous Low Earth Orbit with a proprietary payload of instruments for scanning several thousand Near Earth and Main Belt Asteroids in order to estimate their compositions. APS-1 will remain operational for at least 2 years. In particular, we are looking for precious metals and water, offering the greatest economic opportunities for Earth-return and in-situ development respectively. The data harvested by APS-1 will populate our Space Resources Database, which will be the most comprehensive inventory of our Solar System to date.
Two spacecraft will share the same launch towards the cluster of asteroids identified by APS-1 as most likely to contain viable candidates for surface exploration. Upon approach, they will separate into scanner and lander modules:
Asteroid Prospecting Satellite II (APS-2)
Our second space telescope, APS-2, will perform a close flyby of the asteroids in the cluster, acquiring more detailed information about their composition, shape, size, spin, topography and texture, in order to decide which one AEP-1 should land on and to select a landing site.
Asteroid Exploration Probe I (AEP-1)
AEP-1 will rendezvous with, orbit and land on the likely best mining candidate as identified by APS-2. A Space Capable Asteroid Robotic Explorer will deploy to explore the surface, take core samples, test extraction technology and select a mining site for AMP-1.
All the technology AMC is developing has the ultimate intention of facilitating mankind’s first commercial asteroid mining mission.
Asteroid Mining Probe I (AMP-1)
AMP-1 will land at the site selected by AEP-1, set up its mining equipment and attempt to extract 20 tonnes of Platinum Group Metals. Accounting for up to 10% of the global annual supply, they will be sent down to Earth in the reusable mining shuttle. The mine will continue operating until depletion, with subsequent shuttles bringing tools for in-situ resource utilisation, thus using the asteroids as the building blocks for an extraterrestrial economy.