Edwin Kite on Warming Mars

Edwin Kite is an associate professor of geophysical sciences at the University of Chicago and member of the Mars Curiosity rover science team. His research focuses on atmospheric processes on rocky planets, in particular the evolution of Mars’s atmosphere and climate over the history of the solar system.

In this talk he describes why many of the commonly-discussed plans for warming Mars to release the water trapped in subsurface ice won’t work (too little CO₂ on the planet, insufficient fluorine or chlorine to manufacture super greenhouse gases, etc.) and an alternative approach of manufacturing nanorods in situ from regolith and dispersing them as an atmospheric aerosol to create a greenhouse effect to block infrared from being lost to space. He believes a pilot demonstration project which would raise the average surface temperature of Mars by 10° C in ten years could be conducted with only 14 Starship flights to the red planet.

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