Global Environmental Change: Geoengineering Technology

by Lyle M. Jenkins, NASA - Johnson Space Cent, Houston, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering, Construction, and Operations in Space IV


The `overview effect,' looking at the entire Planet Earth from space, has communicated the reality of the limited extent of our environment and its apparent fragility. Space continues to play a key role in understanding the Earth system processes in the Mission to Planet Earth portion of the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Incontrovertible evidence of the effects of environmental change may not be established until those changes are far advanced. In addition to monitoring environmental parameters, geoengineering operations in space may offer benefits in mitigating adverse environmental effects. To reduce the risk in policy implementation, Mission for Planet Earth geoengineering strategies need to be supported by technology development and demonstrations, both to discern the potential benefits and to assess the risks of execution of those strategies. Structuring these Mission for Planet Earth technology programs to facilitate dual use technology and technology transfer to the commercial sector produces near term benefits while preparing to deal with global environmental change.

Subject Headings: Planets | Space exploration | Risk management | Space stations | Aerospace engineering | Temperature effects | Structural engineering

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