I believe everyone is familiar with gold as a precious metal. Its value has been at the forefront since ancient times. Whether in ancient times or in modern times, people regard gold as a substance that can maintain and increase its value. Are there abundant gold reserves on the earth?
Gold is mined from nature. According to the research of scientists, the proportion of gold in the earth’s crust is only one part per billion, which can be said to be very small. In total, humans have only mined about 200,000 tons of gold. Seeing these data, some friends may say that the earth’s gold reserves are very small. Is this really the case? the answer is negative.
In fact, the earth has a lot of gold reserves. Even if all the gold in the earth’s crust can be mined, it is a huge number that we cannot imagine. With the current technological strength of mankind, what we can mine is only the gold in the shallow layers of the earth’s surface, and the large amount of gold in the true depths of the earth’s crust, we do not have the ability to mine.
In the last century, the former Soviet Union once conducted a great drilling experiment-the Kola ultra-deep drill. This ultra-deep drill with a history of more than 20 years has a deepest point of 12,262 meters. Through this drilling, scientists discovered a layer of gold at a depth of 7,000 meters beyond the surface, which may be the real storage location of crustal gold, and a diamond layer was also found at a depth of 10,000 meters.
At a depth of 7000 meters underground, we naturally do not have the ability to mine, so are these all the earth’s gold reserves? Of course not. According to the research of scientists, there was a golden rain in the early days of the earth. A large number of gold fragments fell from space to the earth. Since the earth was still in a state of lava at the time, the gold continued to move towards the earth after falling. Deposition inside the earth.
Scientists initially estimate that the gold reserves brought by the golden rain are about 6 billion tons. They are basically deposited deep inside the earth. It can be seen that the earth’s gold reserves are very rich, but we do not have the ability to mine. Moreover, even if we have such technological strength in the future, it is not recommended to mine the gold inside the earth. Once we destroy the stable structure of the earth’s interior, it may cause devastating damage to the ecological environment.
We can’t get a lot of gold on the earth, so we can only focus on space. There are countless planets in the vast universe, and naturally there will be abundant gold resources. So is gold such an element more common in the universe? In fact, it is also rare in the universe. Don’t look at the vastness of the universe, with countless planets, but the resource of gold may be really rare and not everywhere.
Gold is not an ordinary environment. It can be produced under ordinary conditions. It requires some very harsh environments. We all know that stars are hydrogen processing plants that can convert a large amount of hydrogen in the universe into other elements. We must know that in the early days of the universe, there were no other elements except hydrogen and a small amount of lithium in helium.
Later, when stars were born, the nuclear fusion in the center could convert hydrogen into some other elements, but the types of elements transformed by nuclear fusion inside the star were also very few, at most, it was transformed into the position of element 26, iron, and heavier. Elements cannot be produced by nuclear fusion, so how did heavy elements such as gold come from?
In fact, the source of the gold element is also related to the star. When a star with a mass of more than 8 times the sun reaches the end of its life, a supernova explosion will occur, and a certain amount of gold element can be produced in the process. In addition, the collision and merger of neutron stars can also produce a certain amount of gold, but the collision and merger of neutron stars is a rare event in the universe.
Therefore, the gold element in the universe is mainly produced by supernova explosions at the end of massive stars. So, are supernova explosions common in the universe? The answer is naturally no, although from the perspective of the vastness of the universe, there are many supernova explosions from massive stars, but from the perspective of a galaxy, it is also a rare event.
Therefore, the gold element is also very rare in the universe, but why can the earth have so many gold elements? In fact, it is mainly related to the predecessor of the solar system. Before the formation of the solar system, there have been two generations of massive stars. Both generations of massive stars had supernova explosions at the end, producing a certain amount of gold, which was added to the solar nebula.
The neutron star formed after the supernova exploded and later collided and merged with neutron stars, once again releasing a certain amount of gold, which also brought a variety of heavy elements, including gold, to the original solar nebula. In the end, the solar nebula collapsed to form the star, the sun, and other major celestial bodies. It can be seen that the solar system is a galaxy rich in gold. Not only is there a lot of gold on the earth, but there may also be more abundant on other planets. Of gold reserves.
In 1852, astronomer Gasparis discovered an asteroid, numbered it as Asteroid 16, and later named it Phantom Star. Void Star is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, with a diameter of more than 200 kilometers and a mass of about 241 million tons.
The phantom star is not only a huge asteroid, but also a very special asteroid. Scientists have discovered through observation and research that this asteroid can also be called a golden asteroid. The main reason for calling it so is Because it is a planet composed of multiple metals, the main components are iron, nickel and some rare metals, of which gold accounts for the majority.
The reason why the phantom star is so special may be because it has collided with other celestial bodies, and the outer shell material has been collided, leaving only the metal core, so it has become an asteroid almost made of metal. Scientists initially estimated that the value of the spiritual star could reach 7 trillion US dollars, what a huge fortune.
Faced with such a tempted asteroid, scientists naturally want to get it back to the earth, but unfortunately, with the current scientific and technological strength of mankind, it is still impossible to get it back. Asteroid mining is a major way for mankind to obtain resources in the future. It is necessary to know that the resources of the earth are limited, and with the rapid development of human science and technology, it will not take many years for the resources on the surface of the earth to be exhausted.
At that time, humans needed to mine resources outside of the earth to maintain rapid development of technology, and the solar system itself had a large number of asteroids, just between Mars and Jupiter there were as many as 100,000 asteroids. Most of them are rich in metal resources, which is a huge treasure house of resources.
Although the resources of asteroids are very attractive, it is not easy to mine them. It requires human technological prowess to go further. When we mine asteroids, we first need to bring it back to the vicinity of the earth or to the earth. No matter which method is used, the demand for spacecraft power is very large. With our current spacecraft power, Far from being able to do it.
Of course, technology is constantly advancing, and things that cannot be done now do not mean that they cannot be done in the future. Asteroid mining will become a reality in the near future. At that time, whether it is Ceres or other asteroids, we will transport them back to Earth for mining. Perhaps many people would say that gold was worthless at that time. If you think so, you would be wrong.
As we said earlier, gold is also very rare in the universe, and it has good physical characteristics. Many science and technology industries need it. Even if its reserves are large, it cannot meet the needs of mankind. What’s more, as human beings move to the interstellar world, once they come into contact with alien civilizations, then gold, a rare resource, may become the main currency for the trade between the two civilizations.