Planetary Resources, Inc., a Redmond, Washington – based asteroid mining company, has finalized a €25m agreement with the Luxembourg Government.
The deal includes direct capital investment of €12m and grants of €13m from the Government of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the banking institution Société Nationale de Crédit et d’Investissement (SNCI). In conjunction with the agreement, the public equity position is taken by the SNCI. Georges Schmit, an advisory board member of the SpaceResources.lu initiative, joined Planetary Resources’ Board of Directors. The company is also establishing a European headquarters in Luxembourg that will conduct key research and development activities in support of its commercial asteroid prospecting capabilities, as well as support international business activities.
The company intends to use the funds to accelerate technical advancements with the aim of launching the first commercial asteroid prospecting mission by 2020.
Founded in 2009 by Eric Anderson, Dr. Peter H. Diamandis and President & CEO Chris Lewicki, Planetary Resources has developed and tested on orbit core hardware and software technologies. The company’s next mission, now undergoing final testing, will validate the thermographic sensor that will precisely measure temperature differences of objects on Earth. When deployed on future commercial asteroid prospecting missions, the sensor will acquire data related to the presence of water and water-bearing minerals on asteroids, key resources that have the potential to accelerate the development of off-planet economic activities applicable to global markets, including the agriculture, oil & gas, mining and insurance industries..