Originally Posted by serp777
I realize that diamond was just an example, but i was just pointing out that it can definitely be found in asteroids and or planetesimals. That's why i talked about compounds thereafter.
There are also large quantities of trapped gasses inside asteroids. In fact, mining gasses on asteroids should be even easier since they are frozen. Comets, for instance, release large quantities of various gasses when they approach the sun and heat up. Again, I know it's just an example, but everything the planets are made of can be found in the asteroid belt. After all, the asteroid belt is made from destroyed proto planets and early debris.
But anyways, gasses aren't very profitable compared to rare earth material, gold, metals, etc, which is what asteroids happen to have a particular abundance of.
There is also no practical, realistic way to terraform a planet in the next 100 years, unless some insane technology comes out. Teraforming a planet would take about 100 years anyways, which makes long term investment impractical and unlikely, since there wouldn't be a return for a very long time. There also isn't much profit to be gained once you actually terraform the planet, because your only source of income is going to be from the people who live there. Yeah sure you can mine and stuff, but it's just easier and more economical to capture asteroids and then refine them on earth, where it can be distributed to a large population and corporate environment. That's besides the fact that terraforming through any current method would cost a ridiculous amount. The only way terraforming could make money is if it sent mined material back to earth, but because of the cost per trip and the time, freighters will again be prohibitively expensive.
I wish terraforming and planetary mining would be feasible economically, since it is a cool idea, but I just can't see any businesses or governments willing to make such a long term, risky, and profitless investment.