Google executives have teamed up with explorer and film director James Cameron to back a space exploration venture aimed at mining asteroids for resources.
The internet giant's founder and CEO Larry Page and chairman Eric Schmidt have thrown their hefty billfolds behind a venture called Planetary Resources which will be unveiled at the Museum of Flight in Seattle later in the week.
In addition to Avatar director James Cameron, Planetary Resources is backed by other cash rich tech execs such as Microsoft's former chief software architect Charles Simonyi and Google's K. Ram Shriram.
"The company will overlay two critical sectors – space exploration and natural resources – to add trillions of dollars to the global GDP," according to the press release.
Former NASA Mars mission manager, presumably kicked to the curb after the US NASA budget axe, Eric Anderson is one of the co-founders of Planetary Resources. The other is X-Prize space entrepreneur Peter Diamandis.
Having James Cameron on board will doubtless also be useful in providing valuable insight as to whether any blue-skinned indigenous life forms reside on resource rich alien worlds. We look forward to asteroids being mined in full 3D.
As for Google's involvement, it's thought that the founders were attracted to the idea that in space, no one can hear you search.