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Plugging the hole in the Ozone Layer

Posted by: Andy Hill - Fri Sep 04, 2009 5:55 pm
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Plugging the hole in the Ozone Layer 
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Post Plugging the hole in the Ozone Layer   Posted on: Fri Sep 04, 2009 5:55 pm
I've not heard much recently about the hole in the Ozone layer and wondered how big it has got, with so much written about global warming and climate change this seems to have taken a bit of a back seat.

I seem to remember reading that the layer itself varies with the seasons in depth but is normally very thin. That being the case how much liquified Ozone gas would need to be carried to orbit to plug it? Would this even be possible and if so could it be delivered by a simple rocket carrying a tank of the stuff or would something more complex be needed?

Idle curiousity only, I wondered if anyone had tried this as an experiment or would the quantities be to great. :)

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Post Re: Plugging the hole in the Ozone Layer   Posted on: Sun Sep 06, 2009 9:11 pm
The Ozone layer is self generating and self-depleting at very high rates.

It was over-depleting for a while due to massive produciton of chemicals that are very efficient at breaking ozone down. Since those have been largely phased out of use around the world the Ozone layer has healed itself and now just fluctuates whenever the sun is being particuarly energetic.

Liquid Ozone would be the oxidizer of choice if we could keep it in a tank. Unfortunately concentration it breaks down in to oxygen/ozone mix and becomes a highly unstable detonation hazard.

First person to figure out how to produce cyclic Ozone will make a fortune.


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Post Re: Plugging the hole in the Ozone Layer   Posted on: Sat Oct 24, 2009 6:14 pm
My understanding is the rate of depletion has stabilized, but global stratospheric ozone levels are still declining at a rate of a few percent per decade. So, it's not just the Antarctic ozone levels we need to worry about. Depletion at higher latitudes might have a bigger impact on humanity, even though it's smaller in magnitude.

By the way, as part of my day job I work on a team that performs total column ozone and ozone profile retrieval for several satellite instruments. I'm a software engineer, but if you have questions for the scientists I can forward them on and try to get more authoritative answers. A number of the folks I work with have been doing this for decades.

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