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Google backing plan to mine asteroids

Google is going to space.

The web giant has just announced that it plans to go to space and visit asteroids that are close to earth, and then mine them for precious metals like platinum.

This isn't really the brainchild of Google. They're jumping on board with a new company called Planetary Resources, Inc., who says this venture will be great for everyone on Earth.

"It can be done. And yes, it's very difficult," says Peter Diamandis, founder of Planetary Resources. "But the returns economically, and the benefit to humanity are extraordinary."

Planetary Resources plans to launch the first spacecraft within the next two years.

Investors and advisers to Planetary Resources include Google CEO Larry Page and Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt and explorer and filmmaker James Cameron.

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