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Private Space Race Targets Greenhouse Gas Emitters (scientificamerican.com)
34 points by LinuxBender 79 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 10 comments



Along similar lines, https://pro.globalforestwatch.org/ tracks suppliers causing deforestation via maps created from data collected by satellites operated by NASA. Transparency in these areas should give the market the inputs it needs to correct itself and stop buying from unethical companies.

Report:

https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2019/07/31/746192595/do...

Discussion:

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20589037


What are the greenhouse gas emissions of a typical satellite launch like?


"Googling around, I find that the Falcon 9 uses about 25,000 gallons of kerosene in the first stage and 4,600 gallons in the second. The second stage burn is largely above the atmosphere so its contribution to greenhouse warming is negligible, but I'll include it anyway. Since the Falcon Heavy has three first stage cores, its total kerosene capacity would be in the neighborhood of 80,000 gallons."

"Each Falcon Heavy launch then will contribute about 0.017 % additional greenhouse gases to the atmosphere beyond what is already being generated by automobiles in the U.S. on the day of the launch."

via https://www.quora.com/How-much-greenhouse-gas-will-be-emitte...


> The second stage burn is largely above the atmosphere so its contribution to greenhouse warming is negligible

Won't it just fall back to earth?


I'm guessing you could make bio-kerosene if you wanted to, though a lot of carbon goes into that too.


Space X is planning on using methane instead of kerosene in their next generation rockets. The want to be able to use co2 and water to produce the methane and liquid oxygen fuels.


The carbon going into bio-kerosene is a good thing (so when it goes back out it balances to zero)


I think the point is that while the plant itself might balance out, the whole process does not due to all the other inputs (fertilizer production, farm machinery, transport, refinement etc) that are required.


471 million gallons of fuel per day is insane.

There's about 300M in the US, right? 1.5 gal per person.

~70 miles for every man, woman, and child.

I knew you guys were car-dependent, but that's on another level.


Does this number include trucks?

Trucks move a lot, even though freight railways are well-developed in the US.




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