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"The point sticks in your head: physics rules. Virtue does not triumph unless the physics allows it."
- Larry Niven

Asterite  
  A person who was born and lived amongst the asteroids.  

As far as I know, the first use of this interesting term in an sf story.

She was a native asterite, accustomed to the annihilating threat of contraterrene matter.
Technovelgy from Collision Orbit, by Jack Williamson.
Published by Astounding in 1942
Additional resources -

Here are a couple of additional quotes:

...the quiet little asterite had a stubborn independence... he was waiting for better times to come - living aboard the little space tug to save the cost of lodgings.

...

All the phenomena of space were real and immediate, to the native asterite, as they had never been to his Earth-born forbears. Even a terraformed planetoid, such as Obania, had no safe hundreds of kilometers of insulating atmosphere, but only a thin gaseous envelope. Meteors falling here were something more than mysterious streaks of distant fire; here they were grim dice of life and death.

An earlier use of this word occurs in the Buck Rogers comic strips from 1929-1931:


(Buck Rogers asterites)

In a more jocular vein, fun-loving native Asterites are described in Juke Box Asteroid, a 1944 story by Joseph Farrell:

Burgess watched helplessly as the Venusians marched into his ship. He glowered at the guns held by their captors, and at the happy Asterites, who were leaping happily about the surface of the tiny planet, evidently overjoyed to be back in their natural habitat.

They were puffy, boneless creatures, all muscles and powerful tendons that were designed to make mighty leaps to escape the gravity of a small asteroid. None were ever found on the larger bodies of the belt; they were space-going nomads who moved constantly from one planetoid to another.

The word "asterite" was also used in the 19th century (and possibly earlier) referring to a kind of opal that presented a star-like reflection.

Compare to belter from The Warriors (1966) by Larry Niven.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Collision Orbit
  More Ideas and Technology by Jack Williamson
  Tech news articles related to Collision Orbit
  Tech news articles related to works by Jack Williamson

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