Intervening in Earth's climate system through space-based solar reflectors

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Several space-based climate engineering methods, including shading the Earth with a particle ring for active cooling, or the use of orbital reflectors to increase the total insolation of Mars for climate warming have been considered to modify planetary climates in a controller manner. In this study, solar reflectors on polar orbits are proposed to intervene in the Earth's climate system, involving near circular polar orbits normal to the ecliptic plane of the Earth. Similarly, a family of displaced polar orbits (non-Keplerian orbits) are also characterized to mitigate future natural climate variability, producing a modest global temperature increase, again to compensate for possible future cooling. These include deposition of aerosols in the stratosphere from large volcanic events. The two-body problem is considered, taking into account the effects of solar radiation pressure and the Earth's J2 oblateness perturbation.



J2 perturbation, Earth's climate system, Non-Keplerian orbits, Polar orbits, Space reflectors, Two-body problem

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Advances in Space Research, v. 58, n. 1, p. 17-29, 2016.