MIT Space Bubbles Would Fully Reverse Global Warming

A team from MIT bubbles could be manufactured directly in outer space, forming an extensive deflective raft to reduce light from the sun. This would be geoeneringeering to fix climate change. The bubbles would be positioned at the Lagrangian Point between the Earth and the Sun.

At the labs at MIT, they have tested bubbles in outer space conditions that could be one of the most efficient thin-film structures for deflecting solar radiation.

This is building on the work of Roger Angel, who first proposed using thin reflective films in outer space, they produced an innovative solution that is easily deployable and fully reversible.

This Space-based solution would be safer. It would deflect 1.8% of incident solar radiation before it hits our planet. It would fully reverse today’s global warming.

The bubble array would be made of inflatable shields of thin silicon or another suitable material.

Nextbigfuture has looked at several space projects that have proposed large bubbles in space.

In 2007 Devon Crowe of PSI corporation created a study for NASA Advanced Innovative conceps for making large space structures from bubbles that are made rigid using metals or UV curing.

A single bubble can be 10 meters in earth gravity, 1000 kilometer in low earth orbit or 10000 kilometers in deep space. Foams made of many bubbles could be far larger in size.

Nextbigfuture Believes the Best Climate Change Solutions are Moving Farming into Greenhouses and Growing More Trees

The Climate problem we have is about 750 billion tons of excess CO2 in the atmosphere. We have 417 parts per million (ppm) of CO2 versus 285 ppm in 1850 before the industrial revolution. 135 times 5.5 billion tons is 742 billion tons. We are also adding about 40 billion tons of CO2 per year from human activity.

China is planning to have over 2 million hectares of greenhouse buildings by 2025 with mechanized-automation of farming. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs issued a guideline to promote the country’s facility-based agricultural planting, outlining goals for infrastructure upgrades and mechanization to boost output and farmers’ income. By 2025, China will maintain over 2 million hectares of facilities, including plastic greenhouses, and achieve above 50 percent mechanization for facility-based planting, a sector of the so-called controlled-environment agriculture (CEA), or protected agriculture.

The world already has about 500,000 hectares of climate-controlled greenhouses. China has 4 million hectares of crude plastic sheeting covering land in partially enclosed conditions. The plastic sheets lie over simple metal poles and crude framing.

The greenhouse tree solution can be combined with iron fertilization of the ocean. Putting a hundred tons of iron filings into the ocean will generate an algae bloom. The algae bloom can feed fish and then take a few to many million tons of CO2 to the bottom of the ocean.

33 thoughts on “MIT Space Bubbles Would Fully Reverse Global Warming”

  1. But it wouldn’t solve the problem of acidification of the oceans due to excess CO2 in the atmosphere. So you still have to reduce CO2 levels in the atmosphere.

  2. I would surely like to see a model of climate change which could account for the past fifty years of carbon emissions and temperature variations; that would give us enough confidence that we know what is going on that we could actually predict the real effect of geoengineering approaches like this one.

    Unfortunately, since we don’t have a trustworthy model to base our predictions on, any “solution” — from “common sense” ones like carbon credits to geoengineering ones like the space shade over here — are essentially shots in the dark. They may be helping, they may be making things worse, or they may be simply throwing money away for zero net effect.

  3. Hay, let’s kill two birds with one stone. Let’s build a space station at the L1 and many other interesting things. Like tow an asteroid there for mining. Create a bubble and fill it with air for some zero-g fun. All that activity will likely block a lot of sunlight. Also we don’t need anything too big since like a camera lens it will spread out over the distance. Just a guess but how big would it need to be anyway.

  4. Really tired of all the carbon political attacks. Methane is a far worse problem. No one talks about it or looks for solutions ever. Demonize carbon so political idiots can pick and choose what industries are better and allowed.

    • The increase of methane is a in great part result of mining and warming, if we stop mining methane and stop burning fossil fuels, the methane problem will be eliminated too. This is all linked to our energy sources being based on fossil fuels.

  5. I don’t worry about man made global warming, but I sure do worry about the effects of efforts from good idea fairies like this. If you are worried about carbon, plant a tree.

    • But if it wasn’t for Global Warming alarmism, we wouldn’t have major, semi-developed (and developing) solar, EV, european/japan hydrogen, rabid anti-deforestation, etc., industries.
      If it wasn’t for 1940s to 1970s US-Russia space race extremism, we wouldn’t have anywhere near the satellites, orbital technologies, lunar/mars aspirations, etc.
      Adversity (and its sibling, regional rivalries) (even if over-blown and exagerated) are the mother of (almost) all invention/ innovation.
      We should be thrilled that we got past the 80s-90s enviromentalism of ‘do less, consume less, make less, be less’ into an almost ‘we can have it all’ but make sure its carbon-sensitive (neutral, deferred, negative, etc) world. Who cares if it is man-made CO2, the point is that we can outsmart the anti-capitalist environmentalists by making cars less environmentally impactfull than ‘their’ current bicycles, public transit, and granola-eating lifestyles. For-profit technologies win!

  6. Since ocean acidification is also a problem that would not be fixed by anything that doesn’t reduce the amount of CO2 in the air, any geoengineering proposal that doesn’t pull CO2 out of the air would be at most a minor part of any solution.

    • Yes I thought of that but it would definitely help and save countless species. Also we are on the precipice of irreversible warming and it would stop that. We obviously have to stop using fossil fuels and stop climate change that way but I think we should do this too.

    • Seawater is naturally alkaline, with a pH ranging from 7.8 to 8.5 with an average of 8.1 —a pH of 7 is neutral—which means that, for now, at least, the oceans are a long way from actually turning acidic. Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in 1850, the pH of surface ocean waters has fallen by 0.1 pH units. If anything, the ocean is becoming more “neutral”, but using the word “acidic” sounds scarier for the cause of climate alarmism.

  7. Is it necessarily a good idea to block 2% of the light coming to this planet? That might not seem like a lot, but I bet the trillions of plants would beg to differ.

  8. Would it be cheaper to make bubbles from earth materials, or grab dust from the moon and make a dust cloud, or grab asteroids to make dust clouds?

    The best material with a gravity well problem, or good enough material with no gravity well?

  9. Regolith moon rock, would make a great renforcing nano ceramic for our space bubbles. Building in moon orbit is a logistical choice.
    electric thrusters keep the bubbles in place against solar wind.
    It’s a great solution and should be constructed by a multi national coalition

  10. Regolith moon rock, would make a great renforcing nano ceramic for our space bubbles. Building the heat barrier in moon orbit is a futuristic but logistical choice.
    New electric thrusters can keep the bubbles in place against solar wind.
    It’s a great solution and should be constructed by a multi national coalition

  11. Regolith (moon rock) would make a great renforcing nano ceramic for our space bubbles. Building the heat barrier in moon orbit is a futuristic but logistical choice.
    New electric thrusters can keep the bubbles in place against solar wind.
    It’s a great solution and should be constructed by a multi national coalition

  12. Nextbigfuture is a great website and Brian is a good guy but Technocratic boffin madness, like this and your meat free article are just technocratic boffin madness. Have a bit of humility here please. Solutionism is half our problem today.

  13. Planting trees is not the great solution as its claimed to be, at least how it’s done today.

    Mono species are often used, usually not native from that area, but meant for fast growth like pines. Meaning less resistance against wild fires and diseases. And lower bio diversity.

    Also if those trees are forested later the co2 net effect is not that high. Land can be sold if not protected. High probability for places that are now chosen to quickly plant trees in, South America, Africa, etc.

    I definitely think trees are great but it can backfire:

    What really helps is protecting areas that still have trees. Stopping deforestation. You can become donor of the global program for this:

  14. Seems like a cool approach to investigate. I’m curious if SpaceBubble tech could also be used to generate heat or electrical power as well as simply deflect sunlight from the earth. Could they be used for large telescopes?

    Such projects would be more likely to get funding if the tech had other benefits.

    • I agree with having ago at solving problems It is reversible unlike some of the other things tried like wind farm panels that cannot be reused

  15. Things like iron fertiization and tree planting aim to increase photosynthetic carbon fixation. The MIT bubbles, and any scheme to reduce sunlight to earth, causes a decrease in carbon fixation and INCREASES atmospheric CO2, as well as putting a brake on all solar powered life processes. Those would undoubtedly make situation worse rather than better.

    • It would be interesting to know the numbers on estimated reduction in carbon fixed due to a 1.8% reduction in incident light. A better solution may be to make the absorption or reflection specific to wavelengths not utilized for photosynthesis.

      • Wavelength specific was my thought, too. Just block Green light, and you can reduce the thermal effects of insolation while not reducing photosynthetic input to the biosphere at all.

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