If you were following the blogs last week, you'll recall I speculated a bit - well, a lot actually - on NASA's announcement that it wants to mine asteroids by hauling those in near Earth orbits to the Moon, to "park" them in orbits there and mine them from bases on the Moon. And you'll recall I spoke to this on last week's News and Views from the Nefarium, where I indicated a BBC News article about the mineral wealth scientists believe to be stored on Eros 433, which just happens to be one of those asteroids NASA is thinking about "mining."
But the real question might be, "mining for what?" One reader of this site noticed some odd things on Eros 433, and posted this link to me. Looking at it - and assuming the pictures have not been doctored - one can indeed see some rather strange things on what is supposed to be a mere rock:
Formations that look squared, right angles, horseshoe-like shapes... one might debate such things endlessly, and one might advance arguments that these pictures are doctored, or even advance the old time-worn "tricks of light and shadow" argument that were so often heard with respect to the Face on Mars. One might advance the argument that these are entirely natural shapes that result from obscure geological or other natural processes.
But what bothers me is the Gestalt of the picture, that is, what bothers me is that there are so many such pictures of strange anomalous things from all over the solar system: the Moon, Mars, various asteroids, Saturn's moons. If so, the solar system seems to be piling up anomalies at a rate that is, well, anomalous. One might quibble about Blair Cuspids, or shards on the Moon, Faces on Mars, three parallel ridges along the equator of Saturn's moon Iapetus running nearly the entire length of the satellite, one might balk at monoliths on the Martian moon Phobos, and so on. But put them all together and....well, I cannot avoid my personal impression that we're living inside a vast interplanetary ruin, and there are even quite a few mysterious ruins on our own planet that - calm academic reassurances notwithstanding - seem to bring the picture home.
The fact that this asteroid, however, is the one selected by the BBC News item that I referred to in last week's News and Views as an example of what might be drug, parked, and mined at the Moon, is in itself interesting, for the rock itself is, well... big. (Gold rush in space?) One cannot easily imagine any known space technologies - rockets - doing all this. The real trick, here, is that with such anomalies, one must entertain some more high octane speculation. What if the story about mining certain asteroids is a cover for some other activity, such as mining not minerals, but technology? Or better, what if both objectives are in view, the one openly declared(mining), the other quietly hidden(recovery of possibly technology or other knowledge and information)?
I suspect that - if these pictures are genuine - it's the latter. And if the latter, then it raises other interesting questions. Suppose the strange features do turn out to be artificial in nature? Then the question becomes, are they still on that rock, doing whatever they're doing? If not, who were they? Are they still around? Such questions aren't going to disappear, in spite of the best official denials and the best efforts of the skeptics to convince us we're not really seeing right angles, parallel grooves on equators, and so on.
See you on the flip side.