Whitening clouds to reduce global warming

in ecoTrain4 months ago
Greetings dear friends.

There are more and more alerts that tell us that global warming is a fact and that we are responsible for it, and that if we continue on this course things will not end well. That is why many scientists are focused on analyzing the urgent solutions that we can use to cool the planet, so many interesting proposals are emerging, such as the one being made by a group of U.S. researchers that would have the purpose of bleaching the clouds, so they can reflect more sunlight back into space.

Whiter and brighter clouds reflect more light. Source: pixabay.com.

TheMarine Cloud Brightening project (MCB) is an international collaboration between atmospheric scientists seeking to analyze how certain aerosol particles influence clouds, specifically with the intention of artificially brightening marine clouds by incorporating aerosol particles as a measure that could help limit global warming caused by greenhouse gases.

The research will focus on developing a technology to generate controlled volumes and sizes of tiny sub-micrometer particles of seawater in sufficient quantity to increase the brightness of low clouds. According to the project scientists, the whiter and brighter clouds reflect sunlight better than normal and dark clouds, so they hope to return some of the sunlight reaching the earth back to space.

The scientists were inspired by the white stripes left by ships as a result of particle emissions that have a great effect on low-level stratocumulus clouds over the ocean. They have been studying for a long time satellite images showing these bright white stripes that correspond to shipping lanes. They are artificial clouds that form as a result of tiny particles produced by ship emissions, these particles float in a moist layer of the atmosphere and generate new clouds or attract water from existing cloud particles.

Ship tracks' above the northern Pacific Ocean. Source: NASA/GSFC/Jeff Schmaltz/MODIS Land Rapid Response Team.

The brighter artificial clouds would form following the same principle as those generated by ships, which is generally similar to that of the formation of normal clouds. In this sense, normal clouds originate when the relative humidity is very high, initiating condensation in the atmosphere; but this condensation into water droplets is formed around microscopic particles called cloud condensation nuclei, which can be aerosols of natural origin such as dust and pollen, or of atropogenic origin such as soot produced by ships, and in very remote areas, fine particles of sea salt detached from the waves would act as these nuclei.

Scientists believe that the higher the concentration of particles that act as condensation nuclei, the greater the number of cloud droplets and the smaller their size, which makes them whiter and brighter, reflecting more light. So their intention is to spray seawater to dry them instantly on contact with air, and form tiny salt particles that serve as cloud condensation nuclei to generate whiter clouds.

While the scientists are designing various techniques for spraying seawater, they are also conducting climate modeling to validate their proposal as a possible solution.

Let us hope that the tests will validate this procedure and that it will provide us with an immediate solution to curb global warming, which although it is a solution that the planet is demanding, it should not at any time replace the measures agreed upon to reach the goal of zero greenhouse gas emissions, since it is the only measure that guarantees a more sustainable future.

Thanks for coming by to read friends, I hope you liked the information. See you next time.


You must be an environmental scientist

Yes indeed, but I work more with contaminated water remediation.

Ohh nice.. studying that course in the high school then was so tough

Hi @emiliomoron, thank you for sharing with us the scientific advances that are being developed in the field of conservation and preservation of our planet, as global warming is one of these problems that must be addressed urgently, since the side effects it causes on our ecosystem are serious. I find very interesting the research that is being developed on cloud whitening with the use of aerosols, I really hope it will be very successful. Greetings

There is no doubt that the problem needs to be addressed urgently, and this type of solution is necessary to provide an immediate response while the emissions that cause global warming are being reduced.