TMO Background Mode: Interview With TransAstra's Founder Dr. Joel Sercel

Asteroid mining! When you think about that, science fiction stories placed many years in the future come to mind. But Dr. Joel Sercel, Founder and Principal Engineer at TransAstra Corp., has other ideas. And he knows what he's doing. Dr. Sercel earned his Ph.D. at the California Institute of Technology while working at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in advanced propulsion systems. Today, he's at TransAstra developing the technologies and vehicles (space tugs) to mine asteroids and create refueling stations in space.  It turns out that with specialized spacecraft, propellant can be extracted, via optical mining, from certains kinds of asteroids. Things are moving fast in this industry, boosted by the high technology and funding available in Silicon Valley. Joel presents a fascinating glimpse of SciFi turning into reality. Today.

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