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By midoh
sorry for coming so late into the discussion,I outlined a terrestrial trash disposal solution called "Nuke mankinds' Waste". I think some of the objectors to the extraterrestrial trash dump idea are falling into the judgemental/negativity trap invoking the analytical side of the brain only.However to solve the thorny complex problems that mankind faces requires the use of the creative side of the brain as well.This usually requires telling our analytical side to the brain to chill out.A good way of doing this is coming up with the most zany off the wall ideas you can think of and suspend judgement at least untill one has at least one or two brilliant ideas among all the junk!
I think Edward De Bono called this 'PO'- for provocative operation.Perhaps we might generate more creative ideas if we just put ourselves through the mental discipline of thinking of at least 3 ways in which this might be made to work. In that spirit I offer the following:
1.load the most toxic waste,solidify it,launch it into outer space and blow it up once it is in orbit.
2.Send it to one of the Langrangian points (so it won't drift away and pollute other areas of space.
3.Put the most dangerous and expensive to treat waste in small canisters launch them into a degading orbit that will cause them to re-enter the atmosphere and be completly burnt up.
There, 3 (newish ) ideas and not a single critical word in this post! How hard can that be? Try it!
By AaronAgassi
The problem still remains of cost to orbit. Manufacture on Earth for deployment in space is bass-akwards to begin with, much less trash disposal. Rather, it is manufacture in space that would be sensible. And even anticipating the cost to orbit going down. But then, another possibility entirely will be the space elevator or even multiple space elevators. The space elevator as cosmic garbage chute?
By midoh
The last post just reminded me of something
But then, another possibility entirely will be the space elevator or even multiple space elevators.This reminded me of the use of Tethers as a method of getting stuff from low earth orbit to higher orbits without using any rocket fuel.If you want to find out more about how Tethers work ,you can do a google search on Tethers. There are sites that give a good explanation of how they work but I don't have the URLs to hand at the moment.
Midoh ;-D
By AaronAgassi
The space elevator or "beanstalk", will be, indeed, a gigantic tether from the Earth to, say, a parked asteroid in geosynchronous orbit. However, a conventional tether system from a launch vehicle still will not recover enough energy to make garbage disposal feasible. Only the space elevator has any chance of making access to orbit cheap enough for garbage disposal. And this assumes a) that power beamed down from solar arrays in outer space and also used to run the space elevator is cheap and abundant and that b) there is such a surplus of available time slots on multiple space elevators so that disposal of any kind as much as there will still be any on Earth, even processing or recycling off world, might even be considered.

Garbage disposal in space is really practical proposition for garbage created in outer space to begin with. And so, the best idea first, is to relocate the major sources of waste Off World, to whit, heavy industry. And the space elevator will bring that about fairly comprehensively. And there are may other advantages in such a transition, including the microgravity and abundant resources. But launching systems manufactured on Earth into outer space, let alone garbage! faces every disadvantage, gravitational and otherwise.

Radioscopes, however, might still be an export Off World, as they are even now, serving as powers sources for deep space probes venturing too far from the sun for solar power. And perhaps even the spent low grade radioscope material that we currently relegate to waste, might one day be utilized or reprocessed in a number of ways. And with the space elevator, this, too, might that much more safely be accomplished, Off World. Radioscopes along with certain other minerals or rare earth, are unique product of terrestrial tectonics, unless any of the other planets turn out to be similarly active.
By AaronAgassi
Another wildly impractical non-solution is suggested by the space cannon. Never mind burning up waste in reentry, the stuff would already be flaming out and damaging the atmosphere, even on the way up! Entire massive artillery batteries would be required, without so much as even making a dent in the waste accumulation. Instead, perhaps the waste could be targeted for ballistic impact upon the wastes sources to begin with, laying waste the entire heavy manufacturing infrastructure!
By Rishi
PO is a great thinking tool. It generates many options non-controversially. Midoh, I salute you!

Here is another:
PO, We shoot all human beings into space and drop the waste down to earth.
From missPlayful's Compearth to Dumpearth in one easy transition.

PO, fill all disused mines with waste and seal.
PO, fill all barren canyons and plant trees.

By AaronAgassi
Like anything else, toilets are more easy to flush downward, with the gravitational advantage, than upwards, against the incline of the gravity well.

Indeed, when it comes to "assumption smashing," the most entrenched and pernicious assumption remains habitation and production only on this one Earth.
By midoh
:-? I think it's becoming very clear that while mankind( particulaly the subset kown as 'westerners' ) find it all too easy to turn cash into trash( whether the trash is terrestrial or extraterrestrial ) we have great difficulty performing the reverse operation:-turning turning trash into cash!

Consumerism I think the phenomenum is called.Marketing and advertising are implicated as well.

Perhaps our troubles would be solved if we blasted a collection of advertising,marketing executives to the moon,with a one way ticket! :-D :-D :-D

By AaronAgassi
Au contraire, clearly there is plenty of useful work for marketers right here on Earth, consciousness raising in favor of better and more imaginative solutions.
By Rishi
In his book,'Po, beyond yes and no', Edward De Bono gives this example on polluting industries:
Po, the factory must be situated downstream of itself.

If it were made mandatory for an industry to let out its effluent upstream of its intake, the industry will be the first one to feel the effect of its effluent quality. It will be forced to clean its act.

One must differentiate biodegradable waste (even if man-made) from synthesised or created harmful waste, like PVC, other polymers, and chemical and nuclear waste. Waste is disorder. To create order from disorder requires energy, which usually means extra cost.

In countries like India recycling goes on at the individual level. There are itinerant plastic welders, who use the crudest of equipment to repair broken plastic articles like buckets, bowls, and what have you for a dime. When after all such repair the thing gives up it is sold to the local remelter and comes back as a new bucket. Poleethylene milk satchets are rinsed and collected to be sold to the remelter. A thriving cottage industry flourishes on such recycling. Regrettably, unwanted consumerism is increasing. Plastic bags do choke the drains in the cities.

The individual has to make an effort to minimise waste generation at his level. Then only he has a right to complain about waste created by industries.

Some time back there was a proposal to ship New York city waste to India to be burnt and generate electricity. New York itself did not want to do it. The fee was USD 40 per tonne. The freight including unloading at the Indian end was estimated at 30 dollard. A neat USD 190/ tonne! Mind boggles to think of the incubation at the ambient temperature and humidity of the waste., what would happen to the environment at the unloading point, Very little energy would have resulted. The western sea board would have become a vast municipal dump, and a new lot of diseases unleashed on an unsuspecting public. Fortunately the committee to which this was referred shot it down and the project was shelved.

There has to be a better way.

By Rishi
Regret Error! It should have been a neat USD 10/tonne profit not 190 dollars.
By Rishi
Dear midoh,
It was no end thrilling to meet up with EdB on your post. EdB's methods are routinely and very effectively used in our work. About to take up cudgels on his behalf , I reflected on EdB's 'Positive Revolution' and desisted.
I also fell the same way as you about the Orbiting Litter.
Manufacturing in space may be a good idea assuming the basic materials are there already or will be brought from somewhere else(Moon?). Otherwise we will only compound the problem. Then there is the question of what to do with the waste produced during manufacture. In some aero-space components an original chunk of Titanium weighing 350 kg ends up as a finished product weighing just 50 kg!

By midoh
Rishi,your last post reminded me of the problems that dogged Boeing in their efforts to produce the S.S.T. (SuperSonic Transport)
a rival to the Anglo-French Concorde.
In some aero-space components an original chunk of Titanium weighing 350 kg ends up as a finished product weighing just 50 kg!
The problem of making a Mach 3+ aircraft required the use of the exotic Titanium for its' heat resistant properties.However the material presented huge processing/machining problems.The figures you have outlined show that the finished component fabricated from titanium had only 1/7 th of the original mass of raw material.In other words the other 7/8ths of the titanium ended up as waste. A truly wastefull process! Boeing had to set up an entire department just to deal with Titanium processing issues.It was one of the reasons why S.S.T. didn't make it off the drawing board onto the runway.It also explains why today you don't see very many all-titanium aircraft flying around.Bottom line:waste generation is uneconomic and is best eliminated at the design stage by giving due consideration to waste/cost issues at the design stage.
This probably applies equally to extraterrestrial as well as terrestrial waste.
By midoh
Perhaps a summary of previous points is in order. Waste aka. trash both extraterrestrial and terrestrial imposes costs (whether those costs are acknowledged or not) on both producers and consumers alike. Most of the space debris orbiting the Earth began its' life during the space-race era.The space-race had it origins in the cold-war and I suppose waste/conservation/pollution/environmental degradation was not a paramount conern of either the U.S. or the former Soviet Union at that time.
The throwaway consumer culture reached its' height about the same time. But now we know better and should be in a better position to protect the environment whether production activities are terrestrial or exrtat'ial.
That is my understanding of how matters stand at this point in time.

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