Why is 16 Psyche Worth So Much?

When I ask you to list out the world’s costliest possessions, I’m sure the most generic things that come to your mind would be cars, watches, yachts, islands, etc. Sadly, all of them are worth nothing in front of a certain 16 Psyche and after reading this article, you will get to know why is 16 Psyche worth so much?

In today’s world, the most expensive thing which a man can dream of owning is an asteroid from space named 16 Psyche whose value is estimated to be around $10,000 quadrillion, which is 50 times the GDP of all the nations combined together.

So what exactly is this outer space object and why is it priced at such an astronomical value? Let’s explore further to find out why is 16 psyche worth so much?

What is 16 Psyche?

Before we get to know the reasons for the hype around 16 Psyche, we need to know what the 16 Psyche is. 16 Psyche is an outer space asteroid that is located about 370 million km from our planet. It is a potato-shaped asteroid that is considered to be around 140 miles in diameter and the largest possible object to having been discovered by scientists.

16 Psyche was initially discovered by Italian astronomer Annibale de Gasparis on March 17, 1853, and was named after Psyche, the ancient Greek Goddess of the soul.

Generally, most asteroids are made up of rocks and ice. But NASA scientists state that the 16 Psyche is made up of a mixture of metals such as gold, silver, iron, nickel, and cobalt to name a few.

What are the Latest Observations on 16 Psyche?

According to a group of scientists at the Southwest Research Institute, the asteroid was observed through the Hubble Telescope and was studied in a three-dimensional manner. They also studied the asteroid using ultraviolet radiation which offered a better view to undertaking the study.

It was found that the asteroid was entirely made up of metals which is a rarity and that 16 Psyche was able to deflect the rays of the sun similar to what an iron structure would do.

NASA has managed to study only the outer part of the asteroid and many more shocking revelations are expected to come in the foreseeable future?

Why is 16 Psyche Worth So Much?

There are many reasons as to why is 16 Psyche worth so much. If you go by the word of NASA scientists, they believe that it is the presence of rare and commonly found metals to be the reason behind its whopping valuation of $10,000 quadrillion!

The asteroid is said to be made up of iron for the most part of it along with the presence of rare metals such as gold, cobalt, iridium, and rhenium, all of which have great scientific and commercial value across the globe.

The iron itself is valued at worth $10,000 quadrillion. So, you could take out your calculators to find out the exact cost of this mammoth asteroid when you include the rare and exquisite metals with it.

Now that should give you enough reasons as to why is 16 Psyche worth so much!

Can 16 Psyche be Transported to Earth?

If you thought that this treasure trove of minerals could be transported to our planet, unfortunately, that isn’t possible. Transporting a 180-mile asteroid is no joke and scientists would have to research extensively to develop such technology which would make this feat possible.

NASA’s lead Psyche Mission scientist Lindy Elkins-Tanton has said that NASA doesn’t possess such technology to ensure that this gigantic object from outer space reaches Earth without any hassles.

However, she doesn’t rule out the possibilities of it coming to our planet and that it could be made possible in the foreseeable future. But it could take at least 10 years on an average to do so with no specific target being set whatsoever.

You do know the reasons why is 16 Psyche worth so much, but sadly all of this will remain a dream for some time at least!

What Would Happen if 16 Psyche Came to Earth?

We all know that getting 16 Psyche to Earth is a Herculean and it would take a great amount of time and research to get this monstrous asteroid to obey the laws of gravity. But on a serious note, we will answer this question with a hypothetical mindset,

If 16 Psyche were to arrive on earth (with the reasons being known why is 16 Psyche worth so much?) the world would go bonkers on exploring this treasure from space!

Various international markets would crash on hearing this blissful piece of news as many companies dealing with the export of such minerals would see their inventories rise as much as 1,000 times. Earth would boast immense amounts of such metals and probably increase their availability by at least 50-60 years!

We told you why is 16 Psyche worth so much but I bet just reading these few paragraphs have given you enough reasons to make your head spin for sure!

NASA’s Psyche Mission

For all you space enthusiasts reading this, there is some good news. NASA plans to send a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station located in Florida to travel around the asteroid for 21 months.

The mission was supposed to be launched in 2023 but was later advanced to 2022. The UAV will reach space in January 2026 with its main objective being to capture pictures of this gigantic asteroid.

Its secondary objectives include examining its contents and determine what is it made of. It would also study the core of the planet and based on the observations, scientists would determine the age and the history of this humongous asteroid.


We all might have heard instances of asteroids zipping past various places on the planet. Some of them have been potent enough to cause mass destruction and create craters on the surface of the Earth.

However, 16 Psyche is a different breed of asteroids altogether and getting this massive asteroid to come to Earth would not just be the victory of science but also the victory of humanity for its resources can be utilised justly and judiciously to improve the future of humanity, thus answering why is 16 Psyche worth so much.