Space Sunshade | Teen Ink

Space Sunshade

April 1, 2023
By DarkTetra GOLD, San Jose, California
DarkTetra GOLD, San Jose, California
10 articles 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
"We can't hide from the reality of what anti-vaccine conspiracies do: they kill babies too young to be vaccinated. They kill healthy children that are just unlucky. They bring serious diseases back from the verge of extinction. And, the biggest side effect of vaccines is fewer dead children."
-Kurzgesagt-In A Nutshell 2019

Climate change is one of the most pressing issues facing our planet today. As the Earth rapidly warms due to trapped solar radiation, scientists are working hard to develop solutions to offset its effects. However, many of these solutions are plagued by cost and other issues, making them difficult to implement on a large scale.

But what if money and resources were not an issue? If I were in charge of saving the Earth, I would invest in trillions of small sunglass lenses in space, also known as a "space sunshade." These lenses would blur solar radiation and make it less powerful when it reaches the Earth, effectively counteracting global warming.

While the cost of putting so much material into space is a major concern, our space sunshade would also need to overcome another problem: the decay of their orbit. To prevent this, we could attach small solar-powered propulsors to correct their orbit and ensure they continue to block solar radiation.

Our lenses would block about 2% of the solar radiation that reaches Earth, which would fully counteract global warming. They would be about 0.6 meters wide each, with a total area of 3.8 million square kilometers. To ensure the lenses always block solar radiation headed towards Earth, they would be placed at the L1 point, 1.5 million kilometers away from the Earth.

Transporting all 16 trillion lenses to the L1 point would take about 10 years, but during this time, the lenses already in place would begin blocking a small amount of solar radiation, gradually increasing until the desired 2% is reached. The lenses would lower the global temperature by about 0.5 degrees over these 10 years, effectively countering the effects of global warming.

However, it's important to note that the lenses could also potentially make the Earth too cold. To address this, the lenses could be positioned sideways using the propulsors, allowing for a decrease in the amount of solar radiation blocked.

By reducing the amount of solar radiation that hits the Earth with a giant space sunshade, we could effectively prevent global warming and significantly reduce the effects of climate change. With infinite resources, we have the power to make a real difference in protecting our planet for future generations.

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