(ORDO NEWS) — Learn how current and future geoengineering technologies can help humans manage the climate.
Geoengineering is the use of technology to change the Earth’s climate. It may have become the topic of everyday small talk, but the weather and its changes have a great impact on individuals, local areas and our planet as a whole.
In some countries, a prolonged lack of rain creates harsh, dry conditions, while others are constantly threatened by flooding.
Severe weather patterns vary greatly from country to country, but one climate change is affecting the entire world – global temperatures continue to rise steadily.
As modern technology advances and our understanding of meteorological processes deepens, scientists are discovering new ways to control the weather. Instead of succumbing to nature’s timetable, projects are being developed to make the sky rain, remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and prevent extreme weather events such as hurricanes and floods.
The reasons for manipulating the weather can be very different – from convenient to extremely necessary. Geoengineering is a term used to describe the manipulation of the weather to combat the effects of global warming. These methods generally fall into two categories – carbon dioxide removal and solar geoengineering.
All geoengineering projects are created to change the Earth’s climate. Although many of them are designed for use on the surface of the ocean and in the Earth’s atmosphere, not all of these projects are designed to function on our planet.
Space geoengineering involves taking a big step back from Earth in an attempt to make more significant changes. Going into space means getting closer to the Sun, so much of the geoengineering technology envisaged for the Earth’s orbit involves manipulating the sunlight that illuminates our planet.
The first idea for such a space technology came from engineer James Early in 1989. According to the British Interplanetary Society, his concept involved the creation of a giant sheet of glass 2,000 kilometers wide.
As it orbited the Earth, this glass structure was supposed to act as a barrier between the Sun and Earth, reflecting sunlight back into space and reducing radiation entering Earth’s atmosphere.
This massive structure of considerable size would be incredibly expensive to fly into space and would likely have to be assembled in space. Space assembly technology is something that is currently being experimented with, according to the Chinese Journal of Aeronautics.
Because we don’t have a long-term human presence on another planetary body, some modern scientists envision a more manageable array of small mirror satellites and regions of dense asteroid dust that would serve as a solar barrier.
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