Extracting earth's natural resources created some of the world's greatest fortunes. Many believe that trend will continue in space, as mining three types of asteroids leads to enormous material yields.
The richest person in modern history, was John Davison Rockefeller, His net worth was three times greater than that of our richest tech billionaires, inflation adjusted. And the source of that fortune? Timely exploitation of a vast, then-untapped natural resource: oil. Well, the days of oil may be numbered, but there's another natural resource that's never been touched, is effectively inexhaustible, and has a dollar value large enough to disrupt entire economies. That resource? Asteroids, and the precious materials they contain. Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson predicts that the world's first trillionaire will be an asteroid miner. The Rockefellers of the 21st century may be less like the internet and tech moguls of the 20th century and more like the old-school oil barons of the 19th century.