Space Sun Shield Technology

BY STACEY SPENCER

A step towards technological change

A step towards technological change

Technology has taken another leap forward for helping the environment. Now through a GUN and MIRRORS.

It has been stated that scientists claim they can fight global warming using mirrors.

SUN SHIELD

This technology would be 100 times more powerful than your average, conventional weapon. It would need its own segregated area before being used. This would then fire many mirrors into space to deflect the suns rays, forming a 100,000 square mile sun shade.

The project holds an estimation of $350 trillion (£244 trillion). Astronomer Dr. Roger Angel is keen to get his project going. NASA secured funding for a pilot project. British Inventor Tod Todeschini, built a smaller version of the gun for the project.

FUTURE PROMISE

If Dr. Angel’s sun shield is victorious, the mirrors look to last up to 50 years before replacing.

This technology would bring worldwide change. Britain’s environment would benefit in the long run.

Updated and published version of this story can be seen at Birmingham Recycled.

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~ by staycee1 on March 1, 2009.

17 Responses to “Space Sun Shield Technology”

  1. Challenge it, question it, find other voices.

  2. […] How can ‘we’ as a nation save energy on the environment through these different sectors? Does it mean we should put all technological equipment on standby? Should we turn off light switches? Or maybe even think of new technology that will help us be more eco friendly. Such as RECOMPUTE and THE SUN SHIELD. […]

  3. It sounds interesting but I’d like to know more details. What shape are the mirrors? How do they get into space without breaking? How do they keep from hitting each other and other objects orbiting the planet? Can we turn them on and off if it gets too cool?

  4. But why does the shield need to be constructed of mirrors? Surely, a plain white screen would, through the albedo effect, reflect sunlight at a fraction of the cost. Does a mirror absorb, and therefore re-emit, fewer infrared energy? And surely, to make any sort of dent on the global warming problem, the area covered would have to be mind-blowingly huge. As you are aware, solar radiation reaches the Earth at an average rate of 1370 W per square metre; solar luminosity hits the planet at the approximate rate of 385,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Joules per second. What portion of the atmosphere will the proposed mirrors need to cover to make any meaningful change?
    You need to take a trip to NASA to press them for more info 😉

  5. Sorry for the late reply Xeno.

    I am still rsearching and familiarising myself with the story as there is much research associated with it.

    In response to your first question, I am not sure about the shape of the mirrors (sorry).

    The mirrors/lenses will go up into space using electromagnetic forces. On them itself, there will be patterns with electromagetic content on them, helping them to get into space. I assume it will be the same for keeping them up there. I am not 100% sure about that though.

    I do not know whether you can turn them on or off if it gets too cool. I actually have not though about that.

    I will do my best to research and answer back to the questions you have asked me, and that I have been unsure about.

    Thank you for responding to my blog story. If you have anymore questions about this issue please contact me. Feel free also to give me information if you feel I have missed out information or it is not accurate. Thank you.

    The finished article for this story is:

    http://www.birminghamrecycled.co.uk/technology/the-space-sun-shield

  6. Dean:

    Thank you for your response. I see that you are highly familar with the issues associated with this project. More so than I am at this present moment in time.

    The mirror/lenses will reflect the suns rays.
    The link below includes an image of the technology itself and more information, which may help.

    http://www.mailonsunday.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1157361/Trillions-lenses-fired-space-cannon-beat-climate-change–forming-huge-sun-shade.html

    At the moment I will do my best to do more research and find out the answers to your questions.

    Thanks for the NASA idea 🙂

  7. Sorry Stacey – I did not see your reply until now. I still think the idea is poorly thought out, and in fact vaguely ludicrous. Certainly, there are more feasible alternatives. However, the more one considers the facts, the more wholly inadequate the proposed budget for this project seems. How much do you reckon the cost of the manufacture and acquisition of materials for 16 trillion mirrors would come to? Add on the cost of building and trialing a one-mile long cannon. Then there is maintenance, spares, insurance (there must surely be a surge in claims for damage caused by falling mirrors), and a whole range of other factors. Can all this be done for 2-3 trillion pounds?

  8. The more I have spoken to people about this idea, the more I am gathering different facts about the story.

    Opinions on this project seem to be quite critical at the moment. Even from those of the professionals.

    In response to your question I do not have an exact estimation in mind but I do know that it would cost quite alot of money, if not more than what is being proposed so far.

    To build, test and change the project, I assume would be the main costly issues. This process could go very well or quite bad.

    I see your point. This could cost alot more than what has been estimated thus far. However this project will not be up and running for another 20 years or more.

    With the project having such a lengthy time schedule, anything could happen. If the design work and technical hinges are going well, then extra costs would not be needed. However concerning the mirrors I see what you are saying. These could face an issue in terms of the use of electromagnetic forces, etc.

    However under all the criticism’s of this project I think that it is something new and Dr. Roger Angel should be creditted for bringing a new idea to the table. Whether good or not.

  9. Erm, I thought the idea to use mirrors preceded Dr. Angel, although the ‘super gun’ method of launching the mirrors was his brainwave – although I stand to be corrected. As for the value of the idea; surely, the sole criterion should not be it’s newness or novelty factor, but it’s functional usefulness and pragmatic and realistic chance of application?

  10. To Dean:

    Yes that is correct. The project should be judged on its usefulness and realism.

    My response however, was not to focus on the project as a ‘novelty’ factor, but Dr. Angel’s different idea. I wanted to state the importance of the originality of the idea.

    Other projects to beat climate change have included ideas situated around solar, wind and wave power or energy. However Dr. Angel’s idea is completely different. Its unique aspect is what I like.

  11. To Xeno

    I am still researching at the moment to whether or not you can turn on/off the project if it gets too cool.

    I am doing my best to find out the answer to this question.

    From my present knowledge of the project I would say that there would be a way of getting around this problem. With ongoing tests and years to combat different problems associated with the technology of the project, I would naturally assume that this question has been taken into account.

    The thought process to the technological side of this proect would need to be considered carefully.

  12. Hi Stacey.

    Did you know that a few years back, there was a plan to send ‘space mirrors’ to Mars? This was to have the reverse effect of the proposal you are discussing; light rays would have been directed towards the planet surface to artificially provoke terraforming (or should that be areforming?). Incidentally, before Dr. Angel’s ‘big gun’ solution, the original idea for Earth’s space mirrors was to use the Space Shuttle. However, as the Shuttle’s maximun payload is 25 tonnes, and the mass of mirrors would be 16 trillion tonnes, this would necessitate some 640 billion journeys! Perhaps you could work out the cost and time involved in this (I know how you love maths). How many times would the super gun need to fired to launch all the mirrors (16 trillion divided by number of mirrors per blasting)? If I was a young student I’d work it all out for myself 🙂

  13. No I was not aware of this but thank you for sharing this knowledge with me.

    I am not a fan of maths. It sounds like a great challenge, but may take me a while 🙂

  14. Whoops, silly me! In my previous post I accidentally divided the number rather than the weight of the mirrors by payload. That should have been 20 million tonnes by 25 tonnes, giving 800,000 missions. (I told you the maths should be left to the young ‘uns!) Sorry if the mistake in my previous post confused or misled. Incidentally, dividing the number of mirrors by their total weight suggests that each individual mirror would weigh 800 kg – and we need aroung 2,600 of these for every person on the planet.

  15. After reading and responding to various of your comments about this idea, I wondered if you have actually professionally challenged this project?

    Do you have your own blog which will challenge this project and get people within this specific industry, thinking about this project? Whether it is necessary? Whether it is realistic in terms of finances and technology? Whether it will actually work.

    If you do not, I suggest that you could possibly create a blog and blog about this issue. You have raised some interesting and challenging points about The Space Sun Shield.

    Do not worry about your previous post. As I said before “I am not a fan of maths.”

    Thank you for your keen interest within this blog post. Your responses have kept me on my feet, thinking more and more about the project from different perspectives. Also you have educated me on various points such as the idea of sending ‘space mirros’ into mars, a while back.

    This has helped further expand my knowledge, keeping me also enticed within the project and how it can or can not work.

  16. wow Staycee, you’ve had a lot of activity! love it! Good work, it is definitely an interesting idea.

  17. Hi Katie

    Thank you for the comment. I know, I have been kept on my feet with this story. So many different views, it’s amazing.

    I am slowly working my way around everyone’s blogs. Just not fast enough. Watch out, I will be commenting on your blog stories 🙂

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