Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"I realized there was a heavy-duty change coming in biology, and I could write a really compelling novel about catastrophic evolution, punctuated equilibrium."
- Greg Bear

Coal Mole  
  Robotic device for asteroid mining chews through the interior, preparing raw materials for use  

The changes to the Spiders to speed up the extrusion process had been made quickly, and had given Rob and Darius Regulo their first surprise. The material supply rate that would be needed to keep the Spiders running at full speed was more than either had expected. Conventional asteroid mining methods would fall behind their demand. The raw materials were there in abundance, silicon for the load-bearing cable, niobium and aluminum for the superconducting cables and the drive mechanisms. Getting it out fast enough was another matter. It had been a problem, until Rob placed an urgent call to Rudy Chernick and asked if there were any way to modify a Coal Mole to work on different materials and in a vacuum environment. A lot of technical discussion, even more hard negotiation between Chernick and Regulo, and the beanstalk project had acquired another working partner. Now a whole family of modified Moles was chewing away happily in the bowels of the asteroid, gobbling up its interior and spitting millions of tons a day of raw materials out through the chutes that connected to each Spiderís waiting proboscis.
From The Web Between the Worlds, by Charles Sheffield.
Published by Not Known in 1979
Additional resources -

Compare to asteroid mining from Edison's Conquest of Mars (1898) by Garrett P. Serviss, asteroid mining (blasting) from Asteroid of Gold (1932) by Clifford Simak, the meteor miner from Salvage in Space (1933) by Jack Williamson, asteroid claim law from Jurisdiction (1941) by Nat Schachner, space placers from The Day We Celebrate (1941) by Nelson S. Bond, the asteroid mining robot from Catch That Rabbit (1944) by Isaac Asimov, the asteroid mine from Love Among the Robots (1946) by Emmett McDowell, and asteroid metal from The Mechanical Monarch (1958) by E.C. Tubb.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Web Between the Worlds
  More Ideas and Technology by Charles Sheffield
  Tech news articles related to The Web Between the Worlds
  Tech news articles related to works by Charles Sheffield

Articles related to Space Tech
It's Spacewalk Sunday, Thanks To The ESA
NASA Predicts Radiation Risks
Adjust Earth Temp With A Bazillion Solar Sunshades
Can China Create Megawatt Solar Power Satellites By 2030?

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Science Fiction Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Science Fiction in the News

Adorable One-Seater Electric Car From Wuxi Sinotech
'Noiselessly, on rubber-tired wheels, they journeyed...'

Zoom Adds Real-Time, Live Translation
'He immediately turned the small shining disc of the Language Rectifier..'

It's Spacewalk Sunday, Thanks To The ESA
'The delicious, indescribable pleasure of being a little planet swinging through space...'

Pengxing Intelligent Robot Horse You Can Ride
'The horse reared up, pawing the air, then sprang into a gallop.'

Tesla Bot Humanoid 'Robot' Vs. Boston Dynamics Atlas Parkour Robot
'...most jobs that require a human form are better done by those organic alternatives.'

Altos Labs' Bezos Wants An Anti-Agathic (To Live Forever)
'So what we're looking for now is... an anti-agathic, an anti-death drug.'

Carver EV Single Person Microcar Leans In
'Farr paid his fare, summoned a one-man car...'

Smartphone Microdrone Concept - Viva Vivo!
'With the Scarab as big as a beetle, I could make a Scarab as big as a sand grain.'

Anti-Forced Organ Harvesting Global Summit
'The doctor was a line of machines with a conveyor belt running through them.'

Flyboard Water Jet Shoes Lift Off
'I shall never forget that first lesson in aerial walking.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Science Fiction Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.