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On the energy required to maintain an ocean mirror using the reflectance of foam
Garciadiego Ortega, E.; Evans, J.R.G. (2019). On the energy required to maintain an ocean mirror using the reflectance of foam. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part M-Journal of Engineering for the Maritime Environment 233(1): 388-397. https://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1475090217750442
In: Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part M-Journal of Engineering for the Maritime Environment. SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD: London. ISSN 1475-0902; e-ISSN 2041-3084, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    Albedo, climate restoration, ocean foam, reflectance

Authors  Top 
  • Garciadiego Ortega, E.
  • Evans, J.R.G.

Abstract
    Among the various interventions proposed to remediate the health and security effects of climate change by solar radiation protection is the proposal to enhance natural ocean whitecap formation. Compared to other solar protection interventions, this is technically simple and quickly terminated. However, it has a drawback: even if the energy be obtained from wind or wave, the power demand to maintain a foam raft determines the capitalization of equipment. The average power demand is inversely related to foam lifetime which can be prolonged by surfactants preferably derived from ingenerate resources. Here, we estimate the associated energy and power demands by identifying the parameters that can be adjusted to moderate the capital cost of implementation. Before dividing by efficiency factors, the range of power demand for an intermediate areal energy requirement of 5 MJ/km2 of ocean varies from 6 to 30 W/km2 for foam lifetime of 10–2 days. The most likely route to deployment is through merchant ship lubrication using bubbly liquids which both reduces fuel consumption and creates an extended wake and is perhaps an example of technical symbiosis.

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