Asteroid Mining and Deflection

Asteroid Deflection and Mining

At UC Santa Barbara we have done work on directed energy planetary defense since 2009. We have performed numerous laboratory measurements to test the effectiveness of directed energy planetary defense and published a large number of articles on the results. This technique is unique in that it can be operated without physically taking the system to the threat. This is known as a stand-off mode and allows the future possibility of complete planetary defense.

Relevant research links to our UC Santa Barbara group:


Using high powered lasers, we propose a comprehensive system to mine space asteroids. This plan involves the DE-STAR, a large satellite orbiting earth housed with a phased locked array which is capable of producing multiple highly concentrated and power lasers. The DE-STAR can target a variety of different asteroids and through the use of spectroscopy, which will analyze the reflected laser light, the composition of an asteroid is determined.This lets us find which asteroid to target.