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Space Science

Climate Monitoring Station Proposed on the Moon 106

Posted by Zonk
from the to-the-moon-data dept.
CryogenicKeen writes with the news that a University of Michigan study indicates the perfect place to monitor Earth's climate system would be the surface of the moon. The side facing us is a perfect location to monitor temperatures and weather patterns here on our planet, and a UM paper proposes an international effort to deploy monitoring stations on Earth's natural satellite. "On the near side of the airless moon, where Apollo 15 landed, surface temperature is controlled by solar radiation during daytime and energy radiated from Earth at night. Huang showed that due to an amplifying effect, even weak radiation from Earth produces measurable temperature changes in the regolith. Further, his revisit of the data revealed distinctly different characteristics in daytime and nighttime lunar surface temperature variations. This allowed him to uncover a lunar night-time warming trend from mid-1972 to late 1975, which was consistent with a global dimming of Earth that occurred over the same period and was due to a general decrease of sunlight over land surfaces."
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Climate Monitoring Station Proposed on the Moon

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  • expensive? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by crunzh (1082841) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @02:46PM (#19293595) Homepage
    Sounds really expensive, isn't there some way to use the money better or do we really need all that new data? We could, like sped the money on CO2 reductions or developing green technology.
    • Re:expensive? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Bodrius (191265) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @02:59PM (#19293691) Homepage
      If you cannot measure success, how do you know it works?

      I'm not sure if this is the cheapest way to get the best measurements, but if we're going to invest seriously on technology to control global warming, having objective measurements to track the results is vital.

      Otherwise, knee-jerk reactions, politics and PR will control which green-technologies become mainstream, if any.

      • First of all, I certainly understand your point about being able to measure succes.

        On the other hand, a clean electric car that is not polluting is something I can measure by just walking on the street. ;)

        Measuring .001C global temperature differences is of course another story. :)
        • by AJWM (19027)
          On the other hand, a clean electric car that is not polluting is something I can measure by just walking on the street. ;)

          Only in comparison to horses, they pollute the streets something awful. ;-)

          More seriously, unless you measure the whole process -- everything that goes into making the car as well as making the electricity it runs on -- you don't know it isn't polluting. In particular, electric cars that recharge from coal-fired electrical stations are worse than cars that burn gas. For one coal is ju
          • by polar red (215081)
            make that wind, and you're there. It's (a lot) cheaper than nuclear. And it takes away a (the only) drawback of windmills (no constant supply of energy): electric cars are a great load-balancer.
          • by PCeye (661091)
            Your point of measuring the process should also be a concern.

            The process of nickel mining for the batteries is frequently overlooked.

            http://www.baileycar.com/prius_vs_hummer.html [baileycar.com]
             
        • Re:expensive? (Score:4, Informative)

          by Chris Mattern (191822) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @06:49PM (#19295369)

          On the other hand, a clean electric car that is not polluting is something I can measure by just walking on the street. ;)


          No, you can't, because walking down the street where the car is tells you nothing about the pollution being created by the power plant that makes the electricity, nor does it tell you anything about the possibly highly toxic metals and/or chemicals used in the battery which will pollute where and when the car is disposed of.

          The electric car may be a step towards less pollution. It may not be. To be honest, I suspect it will be. But you're not going to be able to tell just by watching the car. You're going to need to be a little more systematic than that.

          Chris Mattern
          • by polar red (215081)

            when the car is disposed of.
            when are guys starting to RECYCLE?????

            • Cars do get reused. Every used or "program" car on the lot is a reused car.
              Whether cars get recycled when they cease to work depends on who has them. Some cars go to junkyards that sell car parts, and parts of those cars get recycled. I imagine cars that are simply compacted into one square mesh of steel and glass usually aren't.
              Recycling car batteries is not common these days, esp. since they're sealing the batteries. Those go directly to hazardous waste dumps, do not pass go, collect new battery fro
    • by Guppy06 (410832) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:08PM (#19293763)
      "We could, like sped the money on CO2 reductions or developing green technology."

      Do your part to reduce CO2 by turning off your computer.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by crunzh (1082841)
        Err, yuo know what /. is? The answer would be something like, Do your part to reduce CO2 by building a more energy efficient computer!
        • by creimer (824291) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @04:33PM (#19294313) Homepage
          Wrong answer. This is Slashdot. The Anonymous Cowards should do their part to reduce CO2 by not breathing. A substantial side benefit is the reduction of unwanted basement dwelling DNA from the gene pool. This would help both the climate and the human race. :P
          • by IrquiM (471313)
            Now, where's my damn mod-points when I need them?
          • by AJWM (19027)
            A substantial side benefit is the reduction of unwanted basement dwelling DNA from the gene pool.

            I don't know, it's a pretty big leap to assume that basement dwelling DNA is part of the gene pool to start with.

            Unless... Horrors! You don't suppose... sperm banks!?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by dattaway (3088)
      We could use the same Hollywood movie set that created the Apollo Moon Landings to put a weather station there too. Shouldn't cost more than the typical movie these days. They could even charge tickets for the weather.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      You are correct that it would be very expensive, if you had a mission to the moon with this as the sole goal of the entire mission. So they should talk to India about including this as part of India's moon shots. I assume India wants to land on the Earth facing side, too, so this could ride down along with the robot from a few articles ago.
    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Let's send Al Gore to the Moon so that he can monitor the Earth's climate.
    • Hey, what's a few billion dollars for a moonbase, when it means you have an actual, physical presence when the Chinese get there?
  • by Smight (1099639) <soulgrindsb@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Sunday May 27, 2007 @02:48PM (#19293607)
    Is the moon the closest to earth you can get before your science is distorted by politics?
  • hindsight (Score:4, Interesting)

    by perlchild (582235) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @02:52PM (#19293621)
    He's proving a correlation, which means that knowing what happened, he found clues that it would...
    How can he be so sure that if we gather the clues, we'll come to the right conclusion? We have lots of data about climate, so much we usually can't tell what will happen, how is this different? Is it really that tied to radiation? Couldn't we measure radiation straight in the atmosphere? Do we already do so? Can we take multiple measurements to isolate local conditions?

    Putting stuff on the moon is a romantic notion that appeals to a lot of people, but we should keep it as a last resort.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 27, 2007 @02:59PM (#19293689)
    of the moon....
  • by LordVader717 (888547) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:00PM (#19293715)
    We've had this baby [nasa.gov] ready to launch for years, but for some mysterious reason NASA is having trouble doing anything with climate research. All they need to do is strap it on a DELTA IV rocket.
    • by creimer (824291)
      Maybe the fact that it looks like something built out of neon Lego blocks had kept it on the sidelines?
    • by ypps (1106881)
      Oh you mean (AL)GORESAT? Guessing it may be launched soon after the next president throws Bush's space plans in the trashcan.
    • Actually the Goresat shot itself in the foot back in the Clinton Administration.

      To make a long story short; as an election year stunt Al Gore proposed to launch a satellite that would provide a 'screensaver shot' of Earth to provide support for his enviromental agenda. Caught with his hand in the cookie jar, Gore convinced some of his cronies to hang a few instruments on the side and repurpose it as a 'climatological observatory'. When the National Academy of Science couldn't explain how this slap
  • Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gaijin99 (143693) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:02PM (#19293731) Journal
    I'm in favor of lunar development, but this seems kind of pointless. Wouldn't it make more sense to put the insturments in a polar orbit so they'd be closer and get more accurate readings? Heck, even a geosynch orbit is vastly closer than on the moon.
    • Re:Well... (Score:4, Informative)

      by Bemopolis (698691) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:37PM (#19293945)
      No, it wouldn't make more sense, since he proposes measuring the temperature variation in the lunar surface dust (regolith). What he measures with this is a global average Earth temperature, avoiding problems such as having weather stations in city heat islands. Additionally, the method also measures heating changes due to variations in solar input. Both of these criticisms have arisen among the anti-global warming crowd, so the addition of this methodology is useful. Plus, it's not like it replaces the use of orbiting satellites, getting the required additional funding from Big Oil-controlled politicians notwithstanding. *cough cough*
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by MichaelSmith (789609)

        No, it wouldn't make more sense, since he proposes measuring the temperature variation in the lunar surface dust (regolith)

        The funny bit is that the Apollo ALSEP stations would have done the job perfectly except they were switched off after the Apollo program finished.

        • Any chance we can switch the ALSEP stations back on? We might send a manned mission to the moon sometime in the next twenty years...
          • Any chance we can switch the ALSEP stations back on?

            Unfortunately not because the bit which listens for commands from the Earth is off.

      • I honestly don't see a problem in doing this, as the article stated, there are already many different countries trying to go to the moon. It wouldn't be that expensive or far-fetched to just add some climate monotoring equipment to the list of other things the countries are planning on doing, especially if it is a multi-country joint effort. If we are already going to set things up on the moon in the first place, then there really shouldn't be a problem in adding this to the list.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Perhaps, but there is one advantage to putting a weather station on the moon: it'll stay put.
      Satellites fall out of the sky, become space junk, or get hit by anti-satellite missiles. Equipment on the moon should stay on the moon, and it won't be as awkward to work around if it stops working. Hopefully it'll take longer to make anti-moonbase missiles than to set this weather station up.
      • Satellites don't generally fall out of the sky unless they are in LEO and need frequent reboosts. If a moon-based system breaks down, it's junk too (although not orbiting). Anti-satellite missiles are not a likely threat at this stage, especially not to peaceful satellites.
        It will be even MORE awkward to work around problems because the moon is so much harder to get to than an orbiting satellite.

        So, in conclusion, none of those are very convincing reasons for a greatly increased cost.
        • Space junk orbiting the earth interferes with space travel. Space junk on the moon, less so.
          Satellites are only easier than moon bases to maintain if manned flights go into orbit, but not to the moon. When the shuttle program ends, and since I don't anticipate it being replaced with something similar quickly, will we have to detour Russian or Chinese rockets to maintain the satellite?
          As for why anti-satellite missiles would threaten peaceful satellites: bad aim, or failure to believe that all the satell
    • Of course you are correct, but it is so much cooler to do it from a moon base and there is so much more room to make loads of money off Joe Taxpayer...
  • Cool (Score:1, Insightful)

    Sending robots to do this kind of work makes much more sense than sending humans, a monitoring station could be fully automated much easier than a human could be put on the moon again.
    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by LordVader717 (888547)
      So true. Sending up balls of meat to do something a robot could do cheaper and easier seems more and more pointless. At most it would require the same amount of funding as a human mission, and the experience gathered would be immensely useful for further missions. Let's face it, humans are going nowhere far soon, and why should Billions be spent on giving a few dozen astronauts a field trip?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Guppy06 (410832)
      TFA didn't mention sending people. Is "ZOMG manned spaceflight is teh expensive!" the "frost pist!" of space-related articles around here?
      • The thing is, it's probably true. NASA is pretty beat about good ideas of what to do when they send people up there that a) are remotely interesting and b) don't cost much.
  • Alternatively... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Spazntwich (208070) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:11PM (#19293779)
    We could just use satellites, which we've gotten pretty good at.
  • by Jhan (542783) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:11PM (#19293781) Homepage
    If anyone uses the phrase "Dark Side of the Moon", or "Light Side of the moon" I will punch them in the face. If they defend that by saying it's a "figure of speech", I'll rip their head of. Just so you know.
    • by mobby_6kl (668092) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:17PM (#19293811)
      I thought "Dark Side Of The Moon" was a pretty good album, and I'm not that big of a fan.
    • I suppose you're from Soviet Russia, and are trying to cover up the nuclear weapons testing.

      You won't get me with your water flouridation, I drink rain. Liberty rulez!
    • by bmo (77928)
      "There is no dark side of the moon really. Matter of fact it's all dark."

      "I'll rip their head of.[sic]"

      Just another figure of speech?

      --
      BMO
    • From dictionary.com [reference.com], dark can mean "hidden; secret."

      Until the space age, that's exactly what the non-Earth-facing side of the moon was: hidden from view.

      I admit it is a bit confusing when any given part of what was once the "dark side of the moon" spends half of each orbit in bright sunlight.
    • by azenpunk (1080949)
      but what if their head explodes for dark forbodings too, before you can rip it off?
    • There is a dark side of the moon, and a light side of the moon.

      The dark side is the side facing away from the sun. It shifts constantly.

      La la la, dark side of the moon. I can't see the dark side of the moon. That's because the moon is right about full at the moment.
  • Lunar cooling? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jgoemat (565882) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:20PM (#19293839)
    Would they be looking especially for lunar cooling at "night" on the moon? Because it has no atmosphere and no sunlight when dark, they say that the temperature of the side nearest the Earth is controlled by radiation from Earth. Would that mean global warming would cause it to be cooler, since the greenhouse effect causes that radiation to be reflected back to Earth?
    • At equilibrium, the energy absorbed by the earth, and that given off by the earth are equal. If the earth's temperature is rising, then it is emitting/reflecting less light than if it is constant. You could therefore use the temperature of the moon as a proxy for the rate of change of the temperature of the earth.

      The greenhouse effect isn't causing radiation to be reflected back to earth. It is a result of lowering the overall emissivity of the earth, while increasing the overall absorptivity (though to
  • Isn't the moon getting smacked around by asteroids on a fairly regular basis (hence all those impact craters)? How long is a "permanent" installation really going to last? I know I must be missing something... Right?
    • Yea. Like how long it takes for a random location to be hit. Think of being a greasy young teenager for four and a half billion years. The moon doesn't look so bad.
    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      The moon [wikipedia.org] used to rotate, during that time, the side we see got cratered up pretty bad. Now that it doesn't rotate anymore the Earth facing side doesn't see a lot of impacts.
  • by zamboni1138 (308944) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:50PM (#19294033)
    Like any other good remote automated weather station (think AWOS), there should be a phone number to dial into, so that pilots could check the local weather, as well as a VHF station for in-flight use. I can imagine the data now:

    000:00:00:00 Winds: Calm, Altimeter: 00.00, Humidity: 0, Visibility: > 20 miles, Celling: > two five thousand feet
    000:01:00:00 Winds: Calm, Altimeter: 00.00, Humidity: 0, Visibility: > 20 miles, Celling: > two five thousand feet
    000:02:00:00 Winds: Calm, Altimeter: 00.00, Humidity: 0, Visibility: > 20 miles, Celling: > two five thousand feet
    000:03:00:00 Winds: Calm, Altimeter: 00.00, Humidity: 0, Visibility: > 20 miles, Celling: > two five thousand feet
    000:04:00:00 Winds: Calm, Altimeter: 00.00, Humidity: 0, Visibility: > 20 miles, Celling: > two five thousand feet, caution extreme radiation warning

  • from which to measure and study so called global warming. Or more accurately, solar radiation fluctuations and its effects on its satellites (the moon and earth).
    The overwhelming arrogance of some people to believe that mere humans and our assorted activities have a major impact on the (average) mass of the atmosphere of about 5,000 trillion metric tons, is astounding in the extreme. A single volcanic eruption spews more "greenhouse gases" and particulates into the atmosphere than all human activity for a
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by LordVader717 (888547)
      Wow, either this is just bait, or you are an astoundingly ignorant being.

      First off, if you'd have read the article, you'd have noticed this is about observing terrestrial radiation, not solar radiation.

      The overwhelming arrogance of some people to believe that mere humans and our assorted activities have a major impact on the (average) mass of the atmosphere of about 5,000 trillion metric tons, is astounding in the extreme.

      There's an old saying that goes: "There's plenty more fish in the sea" [bbc.co.uk]

      A single volcan

      • Neither troll nor flamebait.

        First off, if you'd have read the article, you'd have noticed this is about observing terrestrial radiation, not solar radiation.

        And where do you believe terrestrial radiation comes from? The sun. What is being measured and observed is terrestrial re-radiation, with solar radiation as a control and baseline.

        There's an old saying that goes: "There's plenty more fish in the sea"

        Now there's a "red herring" argument! I believe that quote refers to dating.

        There's something called th

        • And where do you believe terrestrial radiation comes from? The sun. What is being measured and observed is terrestrial re-radiation, with solar radiation as a control and baseline.

          And the reason the re-radiation is interesting is because it's good to know what's going out, we already know whats coming in.

          Now there's a "red herring" argument! I believe that quote refers to dating.

          It can refer to many things, but you have only heard it in that context it seams. The point is that what used to seem mysterious,

        • by Cadallin (863437)
          I don't think anyone argues that fossil fuels are naturally occurring. Deposition of organic matter through various climate, weather, volcanic, and other activity being an exceptionally natural process. A slightly more sensible question is whether the material is biological in origin, or geophysical.

          And also, probably unlike you, I've actually seen a scholarly report (in person) on the subject by someone doing research in the area with credentials in Environmental Chemistry. I tend to suspect that foss

    • by gnuman99 (746007) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @05:47PM (#19294923)
      Stop trolling, troll. You know, people had setellites in space using misterious things called "SOLAR PANEL"s for their power production for a few decades now. And guess what? The EM flux from the sun didn't change, yet, global warming!

      According to
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide [wikipedia.org]
      Earth's atmosphere contains about 3 trillion tons of CO2.

      Now, let's get some real data about emission,
          http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/emis/tre_glob.htm [ornl.gov]
      In 2003, 7.303 billion tons of additional CO2 emitted from fossil fuels

      See the nice graph they have,
          http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/emis/graphics/cumulat ivedata.JPG [ornl.gov]
      Now if they just add India and China accelerating consumption, we would see a huge spike at the end.

      So, we are have an ADDITIONAL 7.3/3000 => 0.24% of CO2 by weight per year to the ecosystem.

      Now, according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide_in_the _Earth's_atmosphere [wikipedia.org], ALL volcanoes release about,
          130-230 MILLION tons of CO2.

      So humanity is releasing, oh, 30-50 TIMES the amount of CO2 by volcanoes during the SAME AMOUNT OF TIME., well, back in 2003.

      This also means that current natural system is balanced at volcanic emissions of CO2, not 50 times that, hence CO2 is rising and not being tanked.

      Also, if 3000 billion tons of CO2 is 380ppm, then 7.3 (from fossil fuels in 2003) is only 1ppm.. So, that doesn't even account for the total increase of CO2 now hence the number is too low (additional release of CO2 from burning forests probably accounts for the rest, but who weights forests??). CO2 is going up at a current rate of 2 ppm per year and accelerating.

      Anyway, what you say is bullshit as seen above. Volcanoes do not account for even a fraction of what is happening in CO2.

      Just wait a little bit and "mother nature" will help us increase the CO2 rate much, much faster than even currently. When the Siberian and Canadian bogs defrost and warm up, the Atlantic (aka. Bermuda Triangle) and Black Sea releases their methane (it just needs to warm a little bit more), well, then we'll see global warming. CO2 will be over 1000ppm by end of the century and then, well, you or your kids may just see what happens then.
      • Just a minor correction...

        The 7.303 billion tons is carbon, not CO2. CO2 has those extra 2 oxygen atoms that makes it about 3.67 times heavier, so 7.303 billion tons of carbon is 26.8 billion tons of CO2. Changes your numbers a bit.
    • by SEMW (967629) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @08:21PM (#19295951)

      The overwhelming arrogance of some people to believe that mere humans and our assorted activities have a major impact...
      You're right! For too long humanity has been making decisions on the basis of nothing more than "facts", "data", and "experimental evidence". No longer! We shall move over to a system of making decisions on how arrogant it is to believe things.

      For example, atoms are the fundamental building blocks of matter; it is extraordinarily arrogant of humanity to think that we can split them. Simple logical thus shows that atom bombs are obviously myths, and it clearly follows that Hiroshima and Nagasaki were not destroyed by them. As a "nuclear bomb sceptic", I have previously been assaulted by someone who claimed to be a family member of someone who was killed by a nuclear bomb! I was merely attempting to calmly and patiently explain how bombs were a liberal consipiracy propogated by the all-controlling American liberal media, but alas -- they did not want to listen to the Truth.

      They even offered to take me over to Japan to show me the 'destruction' -- when I refused on the grounds that the voyage would take several months by steamship, they preposterously claimed that mankind could fly through the air? How arrogant is that, to think that mankind should have the ability to conquer the sky, which clearly belongs to God; and if He had meant us to fly, He would have given us wings!

      Ah, the arrogance of Humanity to believe such things.
    • A single volcanic eruption spews more "greenhouse gases" and particulates into the atmosphere than all human activity for a decade.

      Just once, I'd like to see someone cite a source for this ridiculous claim. I bet it's that Channel 4 'documentary'.

    • by travllr (773121)
      Just in case those who aren't familiar with the common sense of the FairTax, this is why it will make a good income tax replacement system: It's...

      The FairTax is:

      SIMPLE, easy to understand
      EFFICIENT, inexpensive to comply with and doesn't cause less than
      optimal business decisions for tax minimization purposes
      FAIR, loophole free and everyone pays their share
      LOW TAX RATE, achieved by broad base with no exclusions
      PREDICTABLE, doesn't change, so financial planning is possible
      UNINTRUSIVE, doesn
  • It'll be for more than weather monitoring. With a station on the moon you can use HAARP technology, spy cameras, test new manufacturing processes, research probable mining locations, test habitations, refueling depots, 'defensive' installations, and on and on and on. Despite being very expensive, with all of that such a station would be highly profitable.
  • Bush will fund it if it can report to him "weather" a given American is voting Republican properly or not.
  • by Angelwrath (125723) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @07:18PM (#19295531)
    I would suggest, in addition to watching the Earth for climate change, that we also watch other planets. I've read recently that some research points to part of the climate change problem being the sun itself. Why don't we send weather monitoring stations to Mars as well, and see if the temperature is rising on other planets?

    If we're going to monitor our own planet, we should have some objective evidence from other planets as well.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by shma (863063)
      I would suggest, in addition to watching the Earth for climate change, that we also watch other planets. I've read recently that some research points to part of the climate change problem being the sun itself.

      I don't know who told you that, but it isn't true. Solar irradiance is a very small part of global warming. This is the conclusion in the IPCC's latest report: see this presentation [www.ipcc.ch] from the vice chair of working group one (top link, the relevant slide is 27). The main reason we can separate the tw
      • by ArsonSmith (13997)
        You forgot, also global warming reporting it is from the sun doesn't get federal money the way human caused global warming reports does.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      We've already sent the Mars probes and the Mars Climate Orbiter. If we're lucky, we'll send a Mars Climate Orbiter that actually stays in the correct orbit soon. So, we're covering that end.
      I believe someone also just sent a probe into Jupiter. It took a while to get there, but we should have climate data on Jupiter and some of its moons by now.
      I think we've even tried a solar orbiter.
      So, we're already doing other planets. (Climate on Venus: hot enough to melt probes--but then, Venus has a huge probl
  • Will it be constructed in cooperation with the inhabitants of Zeta Reticuli?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    This has been discussed here. The moon is not the right place to do this. (why should it be down in another gravity well?) The right place is where DSCOVR aka Triana [nasa.gov] is to be placed.

    The location for that is L1 (Lagrange-1), the neutral gravity point between the Sun and the Earth. That location will always view a sunlight earth.

    FYI, one reason that Triana [wikipedia.org] was not actually launched was that it was proposed by vice president at the time Al Gore. (Some wanted to call it GoreSat)
    • by hubie (108345)

      Not only that, but it outfitted to measure the energy balance between the Earth and Sun (it would measure the Earth's albedo). That is something you can't do well from the Moon.

      One of the knocks against climate warming is that some argue that the Sun is putting out more energy. This spacecraft would make that measurement, and it is bought and paid for (and built). Unfortunately some of the same people who argue that the solar output has increased are the ones refusing to launch the instrument to dete

  • Why did they have to go all the way to the moon in order to propose a climate monitoring station? Besides, where would be put such a station?

    Dangling modifiers, anyone?
  • by amightywind (691887) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @09:40PM (#19296423) Journal

    If you really need to be at the lunar distance to monitor climate you should station the instruments at L4 and L5. It takes a lot less energy deploy instruments there than landing on the moon. Solar eclipses are less frequent, etc. You would think that the scientist would have had this figured out before he went public.

  • "Climate Monitoring Station Proposed on the Moon"

    Bob: "How's the climate looking today?"

    Fred: "Yup... still a vacuum."
  • Monitoring climate change is important, but solving it even more important. As plants are natural consumers of CO2, they could help us a bit. We would probably need lots of space to control the current CO2 levels by planting trees, so I am wondering whether we could genetically modify some plants, preferably phytoplankton, to consume CO2 very rapidly. Then we could just throw some of them in every ocean and let them feed on our CO2 emmissions. Our problem then would be to find what to do with the excess
  • I hope they're careful with any nuclear material they might be moving around up there. I'd miss the moon if it were blasted away from Earth's orbit.

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