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Scrapple_Joe t1_jdxyu1f wrote

The sheer amount of energy required to get things to Venus is immense. Not to mention we still haven't figured out how to capture our space trash.


EarthSolar t1_jdxzwrh wrote

Guy really needs to go play Kerbal Space Program RSS seriously


Postnificent OP t1_jdxzul7 wrote

We will get there soon enough. If we can smack around asteroids we can clean space trash.


Scrapple_Joe t1_jdy56n5 wrote

I think you might want to learn a bit more about physics. It's much easier and cheaper to burn up space trash in the atmosphere.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy5ak0 wrote

Except it doesn’t always all burn up and it pollutes when it burns…


Scrapple_Joe t1_jdy63hx wrote

90% of space trash isn't large enough to have to worry about not burning up and it'll pollute less than making the energy required to send something to Venus.


Head_Weakness8028 t1_jdxzaqc wrote

I remember when I was a kid, I asked my dad, something similar of why don’t we just shoot our garbage toward the sun. And his reply has stuck with me to this day. He said that by the time our species is advanced enough that shooting our garbage out of Earth’s orbit and into the sun is feasible, we should already be properly breaking down 100% of our waste into something usable. And he used life itself as an example we eat we drink we breathe, and we expel other usable components into the environment. Technically, we should produce no “waste“.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy0d3r wrote

That explanation leaves out the part that we will never fly out to collect space junk and recycle it unless we end up in some dystopian future like depicted in The Expanse.


VoraciousCoprophage t1_jdyc6qm wrote

"Unless"... Hey nobody tell him, just let him see it...

(Hahah joking, but yea. If we send our trash to another planet for 100 years, and then 1000 years, and then 5,000 years... How much mass will we have lost? We will literally be using all our resources to... throw our resources away. We will have to then start using more resources to capture asteroids for metal. The metal was already there, we just sent it away out of temporary convenience.)


tr14l t1_jdxysiy wrote

I think you underestimate how hard it is to hit a planet


Consistent-Chip8908 t1_jdyajnk wrote

And if you don't hit it properly, it can come back like an asteroid. An asteroid full of your own toxic wastes flying uncontrollable in the solar system, ready to hit earth again.


Postnificent OP t1_jdxzy17 wrote

That part’s irrelevant. Just send it all towards the sun, there is nothing of consequence between us.


TheBroadHorizon t1_jdy0ve6 wrote

You can't just "send something towards the sun". You need to cancel out Earth's orbital velocity which takes a massive amount of energy. It's easier to send something to Pluto than it is to send something to the sun.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy14bc wrote

Which should be our first order of business with these new nuclear propulsion systems they want to use to explore mars. We just keep making more clutter. Eventually it will be a massive problem (like it isn’t already, it’s crazy up there)


TheBroadHorizon t1_jdy1roe wrote

Still a ridiculous idea. It takes far less energy to just de-orbit debris and let it burn up in Earth's atmosphere.

You're basically saying that instead of throwing your trash into the bin by your house, you should put each piece on a plane and fly it to the Australian Outback to throw out.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy2420 wrote

So the ISS will just burn up? That’s why it can just fall out of the sky over New York with no consequences? There is a lot of stuff up there you don’t want falling on the roof where your kids sleep.


TheBroadHorizon t1_jdy2nry wrote

Large objects like the ISS are deorbited in a controlled fashion which ensures they burn up over the ocean away from populated areas.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy3hi8 wrote

Not always. Things fall, things are destroyed, people are hurt. It happens.


Scrapple_Joe t1_jdy5etz wrote

Rarely and still makes more sense than sending it to venus.


Reddit-runner t1_jdzbpt6 wrote

>Which should be our first order of business with these new nuclear propulsion systems they want to use to explore mars.

The main problem here is that those nuclear engines are far less effective than the mass media wants you to believe.

The technology is extremely expensive and requires large volumes of hydrogen which is incredibly difficult to store in space because of the permanent sunlight. It will just evaporate.

In essence its far cheaper and faster to go to Mars via chemical engines.

To send stuff to the sun however requires far larger quantities of energy.


Postnificent OP t1_je34xmj wrote

The point I am trying to make is that we need solutions. And the solution cannot be throw it in the ocean, we have already thrown more things in the Ocean than we ever should have. The average person has no idea that there are all kinds of harmful organisms all around us in the air we breathe, if we killed all those organisms the planet would die and it wouldn’t take very long. Yet we just go about our business, completely oblivious. We are killing this planet, the first step in saving it is stop killing it. The popular answer here is plunge it in the Ocean. That cannot be the right answer. The easiest way to do something is sometimes the worst way and causes more problems than it solves.


tr14l t1_jdy0m5o wrote

Pretty irresponsible, no? One false assumption and all life in the solar system could be gone


Postnificent OP t1_jdy0vzr wrote

As in there is a serious possibility that Venus or mercury could be inhabited by a hostile species? Because anything we have ever built would be vaporized long before it reached the sun


tr14l t1_jdyvzpd wrote

I mean messing with the sun without full understanding of its complexity seems reckless


WhosAlex992 t1_jdy01am wrote

You're logic here is based on both a lack of understanding of space travel, and seemingly a distrust of the classification of Venus as not harboring life (?) Space travel is immensely expensive, both in terms of monetary and conventional resources. Sending garbage to space, let alone another planet, would be an incredibly costly and wasteful endeavor. The reason we don't do so is as simple as that. I very much doubt that the public is being lied to about Venusian life.


atika t1_jdycg7s wrote

Venerian or venusian, but definitely not venetian, unless you're talking about Venice.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy1l2v wrote

No. I keep reading all these articles about these new nuclear pellet engines that are going to cut mars travel to like 5 days, fuel is very light etc… and thought this is a better first use for this technology. I’m sure that instead we will just discard the old ones in orbit and leave them. I have a thorough understanding how all this works and how much it costs. We want to explore but safety first, maybe we should clean up. Ignoring the problem is melting the ice caps right now.


WhosAlex992 t1_jdy2esg wrote

Oh, you mean debris in orbit? Well, my previous points still stand, but now there is the added problem of the fact that we haven't figured out a viable solution for capturing orbital debris to begin with. And, assuming that we had a viable way of doing so, and the funding to launch missions ferrying literal garbage, why would we needlessly contaminate Venus? We could much more easily just send that garbage out on an escape trajectory and call it a day. Rendezvousing with another planet is an extremely technical and difficult process that requires the right timing and months, it not years of planning in advance. It's quite literally like hitting a needle head with a speck of dust.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy2rj4 wrote

Did you miss the part where I did mention that chemical rockets are not suitable for this. I understand why we haven’t. What I don’t understand is why we aren’t working on it. We are working on making it to Alpha Centari and Mars asap but can’t clean up our neighborhood.


WhosAlex992 t1_jdy3e71 wrote

I just explained why? It's ridiculously impractical and a waste of time and resources. We are working on solutions to the space debris problem. It is a serious concern for future space exploration. But sending that debris to another planet is not a proposed solution for obvious reasons.


titanofmeme t1_jdyu3ud wrote

So let me get this straight: we produce an extraordinary amount of spacecraft with nuclear thermal propulsion, launch them into LEO using chemical rockets, capture orbital debris and then send both the engines and debris to venus, costing a conservative estimate of tens of millions per launch?


1OptimisticPrime t1_jdxywxy wrote

We don't want to contaminate it.

The cost of getting anything into space is massively prohibitive.


dark_walker t1_jdxz8bh wrote

He's talking space trash. It's already there.


EarthSolar t1_jdxzs7l wrote

Good luck launching something up there to tow the junk all the way to Venus. The junk does not have its own propulsion system, and most definitely not enough to dish 4 km/s needed to leave Earth’s orbit and intercept Venus.

Why add prohibitive amount of fuel just to send the junk to some distant destination when you can just get functional satellites to, like, do controlled deorbit over uninhabited areas and let atmospheric entry destroy them.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy05l7 wrote

Not wanting to contaminate a poisonous wasteland is the reason behind ideas like “scientists have lied about Venus atmosphere”. We can’t send a probe there for 60 seconds yet do not want to contaminate it.


VoraciousCoprophage t1_jdycge6 wrote

I mean to be fair 'scientists have lied about Venus atmosphere' is about as good of an idea as 'we should send space trash to Venus'...


ryschwith t1_jdy1uq4 wrote

In addition to it actually being very difficult to launch things toward Venus, which others have covered well, materially reducing the amount of garbage on Earth would require an untenable launch cadence--something on the order of launching a rocket every ten seconds.

And if we could manage that we would very quickly turn Earth into Venus with all of the greenhouse gases emitted by the launches.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy2f4c wrote

I am talking about using one of these new nuclear pellet ships they are currently developing to do this. Chemical Rockets have to be phased out eventually and are absolutely not suitable for this purpose. Yes I am talking about future technology.


ryschwith t1_jdy2qf7 wrote

By the time we can launch magical non-polluting rockets every ten seconds nonstop we'll probably have much easier ways of dealing with garbage.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy33ie wrote

The entire problem I have is why aren’t we working on this problem? Instead we are inventing new ways to make trash but not working on a solution.


ryschwith t1_jdy3dl8 wrote

And the answer you're overwhelmingly getting and keep trying to argue against is: because it's a very inefficient way to deal with garbage and there are better options that are far more feasible.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy4ohi wrote

I ask questions like this to see how close minded a community is. I got my answer. Thanks.


astro_turfing t1_jdyti3s wrote

Your question is stupid. The replies have tried to explain reality to you but you are too stupid to understand it. The problem is you bud. Not the community.


EarthSolar t1_je3i33c wrote

That moment when you can't argue with facts so you tried to pull an 'am testing y'all'


Postnificent OP t1_je57n91 wrote

The moment you start spouting theory as fact I know exactly what you are but nice try guy.


titanofmeme t1_jdy3aba wrote

Probably been said, but the significant delta-v required to take an object from low earth orbit and place it on a trajectory to intercept venus makes this impractical. It would require an ungodly amount of energy.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy3drf wrote

I know we can’t use chemical rockets.


titanofmeme t1_jdy4dbf wrote

So what's your alternative?


Postnificent OP t1_jdy4jam wrote

We are supposedly developing nuclear fission propulsion engines to power our ships.


titanofmeme t1_jdy4nfe wrote

And how do we get those into space?


Postnificent OP t1_jdy53c6 wrote

I am not privy to all the cutting edge classified technologies, sorry


titanofmeme t1_jdy5cwt wrote

Don't need to be, just physics. We need to be able to get the nuke engines into space. The only launch vehicles available are chemical rockets.


IowaContact2 t1_jdy7po0 wrote

Tell us all repeatedly how you don't understand basic science and physics and all that fun stuff without admitting you don't understand basic science and physics and all that fun stuff.


StevenPsych t1_jdysjdc wrote

The OP's post and additional comments show immunity to reason, but one of countless reasons is the $18,500/kg ($10,000/lb) cost to get a payload to orbit, and the estimated 2 trillion kg of trash, so you are already looking at $185,000,000,000,000,000 ($185 Quadrillion), and that is assuming everything goes perfectly according to plan, not even including collecting all the trash and many other variables. Considering that is already thousands of times more money than currently exists in the world, this first reason already makes it by far the worst idea in human history. To be fair though, even if it was completely free it would still be the worst idea in human history.


ExtonGuy t1_jdy3ghz wrote

We would risk the nuclear rockets crashing back to Earth, into a city. Even if it's only 1 in 10,000, that's too much risk. Chemical rockets are bad enough.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy3m7v wrote

A nuclear ship is the next step according to nasa. It’s actually the best use of fission I have ever seen.


pmMeAllofIt t1_jdyd4hm wrote

Nuclear rockets won't "ignite" until they're in a nuclear safe orbit, and it will be on a escape trajectory away from Earth. And a large rocket as you propose likely won't be able to have any prolonged operation in LEO, it would be above where the majority of debris is.

All of this ignores the simple fact that this isn't a video game, you don't just drive around picking up trash. You can use it to send trash away once you collect it, but it's not even remotely a good proposal on how to collect it.


drdan82408a t1_jdy0666 wrote

I assume you’re talking about debris that is already in space…. Well, there are many, many problems with this idea.

  1. getting all the debris together, in one place, to put on a rocket would be massively difficult.

  2. it’s not a matter of just aiming it towards the sun and firing a rocket. I mean, you could do it that way, but it would be massively inefficient. You would have to burn retrograde compared to earth’s orbit to lower the perihelion of your probe, so there’s no “missing Venus and hitting the sun”, if you miss your target you’re just in interplanetary space for however many years until you hit who knows what, or most likely forever.

  3. getting all of this out of low earth orbit would be massively inefficient as well. It would be much, much easier to deorbit it safely into earth, aiming at oceans and/or unpopulated regions.

  4. we don’t want to contaminate Venus unnecessarily.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy37ah wrote

Contaminate Venus cannot be a reason. It doesn’t make sense at all.


drdan82408a t1_jdy3p53 wrote

Sure it does. We might want to be able to study it some day, we don’t know what might be in the atmosphere, we don’t know what extraterrestrial life might be like (there are extreme thermophyles and halophyles on earth for example, and even if not for life then there could be geological or meteorological research to be done) but the other reasons I gave should be more than sufficient.


titanofmeme t1_jdyuhjo wrote

Yes it absolutely does. Planets of the solar system are the finest specimens in current astronomy due to their accessibility. As soon as they are contaminated, the specimen is compromised.


TheCh0rt t1_jdyy4dr wrote

Buddy you need to go watch Interstellar, because the only thing that can transcend gravity is love.


CrJ418 t1_jdxz0yv wrote

Because it costs somewhere around $10,000 per pound to launch cargo into space.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy0n22 wrote

So we design a “ship” for the express purpose of pushing crap out of orbit. That’s it’s whole job. They are introducing the ideas of nuclear reactor propulsion etc to head straight to mars (yet another dumpster) when we should really clean up our backyard first. It would make things much safer.


BailysmmmCreamy t1_jdy28rm wrote

Still takes way less energy to just push it back into the atmosphere where it’ll burn up.


KilgoreTroutPfc t1_jdxzi01 wrote

Because that’s not one of the available options?


Big_Signature_1818 t1_jdy6st3 wrote

This idea is so American lol. “Let’s just take all of our trash, and push it somewhere else!” It’ll be some other planet’s problem.


Kelpie137 t1_jdy0384 wrote

There's a reason in every SciFi scenario all the junk winds up at LaGrange points. The energy required to move stuff around, or even locate and latch on to it, is more propellant that we've made to date.


[deleted] t1_jdy4ze9 wrote

Assuming we could collect space trash, it seems easier to bring it back to earth and recycle it. I understand that most people think everything we see is ours to despoil, but I have a problem with the thought of using another planet as a dumping ground.

In the early days of space flight, flights were few and space was big so we designed things to just either burn up in the atmosphere on reentry or be left in space as junk- saves effort and money. But that doesn't scale up, and now we actually are hampered by space junk. We're designing vehicles to be more reusable and recoverable, and so it would be better to look towards a future where we don't generate space junk to begin with.


Postnificent OP t1_jdy57p2 wrote

Until some country gets mad and starts shooting satellites.


[deleted] t1_jdy74mn wrote

I keep my trash in bins, responsibly put it out every week, it goes to a land fill and recycler, the fact that any week raccoons or crows might come along and dump my trash all over the street doesn't make me want to just say heck with it I'll just dump my trash in the street to begin with.


IcERescueCaptain t1_jdy7991 wrote

Or the junk Hyperloops around the Sun and crashes back to Earth at Mach 10 000…….


No-Pirate-4752 t1_jdyvqvw wrote

I believe one must match the rate of acceleration and trajectory in order to collect ONE piece of space junk. The energy needs for this are IMMENSE. However, there is indeed a need to collect space junk and get itbout of orbit. For the safety of both government and commercial space flights.


Prestigious-Egg-5721 t1_jdz6ytm wrote

"Hey Chuck, get a load of this guy, he thinks his reddit post will get us to admit the thing about the Venusians"


SpartanJack17 t1_jdz90er wrote

Hello u/Postnificent, your submission "Why don’t we use Venus as a dumpster?" has been removed from r/space because:

  • Such questions should be asked in the "All space questions" thread stickied at the top of the sub.

Please read the rules in the sidebar and check r/space for duplicate submissions before posting. If you have any questions about this removal please message the r/space moderators. Thank you.


Anonymous-USA t1_jdy0pqy wrote

If you can reach Venus then you can just as easily reach the Sun 🙄.

Why don’t we use the Sun as a dumpster? 🤔 💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰 💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰 and not just the cost of the fuel and equipment but also the availability of the fuel and equipment. You’re trading one limited resource (the ground which actually isn’t so limited) with another.

This is a non-starter of an idea. Might as well dump it into an active volcano 🌋 😆


Postnificent OP t1_jdy1t4k wrote

Pushing objects out of orbit instead of using the ship to fly to mars in days is stupid, I know. Why come up with such an idiotic idea? I must be a big old dummy.


titanofmeme t1_jdyumit wrote

No, you aren't. Many people have had the idea. We're just saying how this one in particular won't work. No need to be antagonistic.


SavemebabyK t1_jdy7whx wrote

I appreciate your thinking. The idea is appealing. I think we are already heading into that direction Universally speaking.