Archive for the ‘environmental’ category: Page 3

Aug 21, 2019

Elon Musk back to promoting bombing Mars with nuclear weapons

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, engineering, environmental, military, space

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk not only wants to explore Mars, he wants to ‘nuke’ it.

In a tweet this week, Musk reiterated calls to ‘Nuke Mars!’ adding that t-shirts are ‘coming soon.’

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Aug 18, 2019

Terraforming Mars in 50 Years with Large Orbital Mirrors, Bacteria and Factories

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, energy, engineering, environmental, space

The McKay-Zubrin plan for terraforming Mars in 50 years was cited by Elon Musk.

Orbital mirrors with 100 km radius are required to vaporize the CO2 in the south polar cap. If manufactured of solar sail-like material, such mirrors would have a mass on the order of 200,000 tonnes. If manufactured in space out of asteroidal or Martian moon material, about 120 MWe-years of energy would be needed to produce the required aluminum.

The use of orbiting mirrors is another way for hydrosphere activation. For example, if the 125 km radius reflector discussed earlier for use in vaporizing the pole were to concentrate its power on a smaller region, 27 TW would be available to melt lakes or volatilize nitrate beds. This is triple the power available from the impact of a 10 billion tonne asteroid per year, and in all probability would be far more controllable. A single such mirror could drive vast amounts of water out of the permafrost and into the nascent Martian ecosystem very quickly. Thus while the engineering of such mirrors may be somewhat grandiose, the benefits to terraforming of being able to wield tens of TW of power in a controllable way would be huge.

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Jul 17, 2019

Regenerative Ecology — Scott Quitel, Founder, LandHealth Institute- ideaXme — Ira Pastor

Posted by in categories: aging, bees, biological, biotech/medical, complex systems, environmental, geoengineering, health, science, transhumanism

Jul 16, 2019

A Thin Layer of Aerogel Could Make Martian Farming Possible

Posted by in categories: alien life, engineering, environmental

Scientists think they’ve found a way to terraform Mars — and all it takes is a thin blanket of insulation over future space gardens.

A layer of aerogel just two to three centimeters thick may be enough to protect plants from the harshest aspects of life on Mars and create viable greenhouses in the process, according to research published Monday in the journal Nature Astronomy. While there are a host of other problems to solve before anyone can settle Mars, this terraforming plan is far more feasible than other ideas that scientists have proposed.

Two of the biggest challenges facing Martian settlers are the Red Planet’s deadly temperatures and unfiltered solar radiation, which is able to pass through Mars’ weak atmosphere and reach the surface, New Scientist reports. At night, it can reach −100 degrees Celsius, which is far too cold for any Earthly crops to survive.

Jun 4, 2019

Promise in the Gloom? How Bleak Future Scenarios for Employment Might Save the Environment

Posted by in categories: environmental, robotics/AI

How might future changes in the structure of business and the nature of work impact the environment?

While governments around the world are wrestling with the potential for massive on-rushing technological disruption of work and the jobs market, few are extending the telescope to explore what the knock-on impacts might be for the planet. Here we explore some dimensions of the issue.

Although replacing humans with robots has a dystopian flavor, what, if any positives are there from successive waves of artificial intelligence (AI) and other exponentially developing technologies displacing jobs ranging from banker to construction worker? Clearly, the number of people working and the implications for commuting, conduct of their role and their resulting income-related domestic lifestyle all have a direct bearing on their consumption of resources and emissions footprint. However, while everyone wants to know the impact of smart automation, the reality is that we are all clueless as to the outcome over the next twenty years, as this fourth industrial revolution has only just started.

There is a dramatic variation in views on the extent to which automation technologies such as AI, robotics and 3D / 4D printing will replace humans or enable wholly new roles. For example, A 2016 McKinsey automation study reported that, with current technologies, about a third of most job activities are technologically automatable, affecting 49% of the world economy, an estimated 1.1 billion employees and $12.7 trillion in wages. China, India, Japan, and USA account for more than half of these totals. The report concluded it would be more than two decades before automation reaches 50% of current activities.

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Apr 11, 2019

This moss-covered wall is as air-purifying as 275 urban trees

Posted by in categories: environmental, health, space, sustainability, transportation

From smog-sucking bikes to electric taxis and paint made of car exhaust, designers and architects are stepping up to address air pollution—the world’s single largest health risk. But a new air filter making the rounds in Oslo, Paris, Brussels, and Hong Kong shows that nature may be our best ally in this battle.

Essentially a moss-covered wall, each CityTree removes CO2, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter from the air while also producing oxygen. A single tree is able to absorb 250 grams of particulate matter a day and remove 240 metric tons of CO2 each year—a level roughly on par with the air purification impact of 275 urban trees. Thirteen feet tall, with a metal frame, the CityTrees are easily installed in a public space, and they even have built-in seating at their base.

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Apr 10, 2019

Surviving Mars: Green Planet expansion allows you to terraform Mars

Posted by in categories: engineering, environmental, space

Terraforming is coming to Surviving Mars in a spectacular way. Not only can you make the atmosphere breathable for humans, but it also allows you to engage in new mechanics previously absent from the experience.

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Mar 28, 2019

The Human, Smart and Sustainable Future of Cities

Posted by in categories: architecture, big data, environmental, transportation

The city of the future is a symbol of progress. The sci-fi vision of the future city with sleek skyscrapers and flying cars, however, has given way to a more plausible, human, practical, and green vision of tomorrow’s smart city. Whilst smart city visions differ, at their heart is the notion that in the coming decades, the planet’s most heavily concentrated populations will occupy city environments where a digital blanket of sensors, devices and cloud connected data is being weaved together to build and enhance the city living experience for all. In this context, smart architecture must encompass all the key elements of what enable city ecosystems to function effectively. This encompasses everything from the design of infrastructure, workspaces, leisure, retail, and domestic homes to traffic control, environmental protection, and the management of energy, sanitation, healthcare, security, and a building’s eco-footprint.

The world’s premier cities and architects are competing to design and build highly interconnected smart environments where people, government and business operate in symbiosis with spectacular exponentially improving technologies such as big data, the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing, hyperconnectivity, artificial intelligence (AI), robots, drones, autonomous green vehicles, 3D/4D printing, smart materials, and renewable energy. The architectural promise of future smart cities is to harmonize the benefits of these key disruptive technologies for society and provide a high quality of life by design. Some have already implemented smart city architecture and, as the concepts, experiences and success stories spread, the pursuit of smart will become a key driver in the evolving future of cities as communities and economic centres. Here we explore some of the critical trends, visions, ideas, and disruptions shaping the rise of smart cities and smart architecture.

Smart Cities – Purpose, Engagement and Vision

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Feb 25, 2019

Elon Musk: Mars Base Will Have “Outdoorsy, Fun Atmosphere”

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, engineering, environmental, food, space

In an interview newly published by Popular Mechanics, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk shared his thoughts on colonizing Mars — from how the first settlers will grow food to the friendly vibe he envisions at the first base on the Red Planet.

“For having an outdoorsy, fun atmosphere, you’d probably want to have some faceted glass dome, with a park, so you can walk around without a suit,” Musk told the magazine. “Eventually if you terraform the planet, then you can walk around without a suit. But for say, the next 100-plus years, you’ll have to have a giant pressurized glass dome.”

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Feb 3, 2019

The Search for New Physics & CERN’s FCC Future Circular Collider

Posted by in categories: astronomy, engineering, environmental, ethics, existential risks, particle physics, physics, quantum physics, science

It is a few years since I posted here on Lifeboat Foundation blogs, but with the news breaking recently of CERN’s plans to build the FCC [1], a new high energy collider to dwarf the groundbreaking engineering triumph that is the LHC, I feel obliged to write a few words.

The goal of the FCC is to greatly push the energy and intensity frontiers of particle colliders, with the aim of reaching collision energies of 100 TeV, in the search for new physics [2]. Below linked is a technical note I wrote & distributed last year on 100 TeV collisions (at the time referencing the proposed China supercollider [3][4]), highlighting the weakness of the White Dwarf safety argument at these energy levels, and a call for a more detailed study of the Neutron star safety argument, if to be relied on as a solitary astrophysical assurance. The argument applies equally to the FCC of course:

The Next Great Supercollider — Beyond the LHC :

The LSAG, and others including myself, have already written on the topic of astrophysical assurances at length before. The impact of CR on Neutron stars is the most compelling of those assurances with respect to new higher energy colliders (other analogies such as White Dwarf capture based assurances don’t hold up quite as well at higher energy levels). CERN will undoubtedly publish a new paper on such astrophysical assurances as part of the FCC development process, though would one anticipate it sooner rather than later, to lay to rest concerns of outsider-debate incubating to a larger audience?

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