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My question is about the ozone layer. Is it possible that sending rockets out to space can damage the ozone layer?

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  • $\begingroup$ It's not clear what you're asking. Do you mean the material moving through the ozone layer? Something about pollution generated by the rockets? Other....? $\endgroup$
    – Brick
    Sep 30 '19 at 18:05
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The ozone layer is a blanket of ozone gas that covers the earth form the upper atmosphere. It can't be damaged by physical objects the same way a vehicle can't damage the atmosphere.

What does damage the ozone layer is ultraviolet rays and some substances known as Chlorofluorocarbons or CFCs. These compounds degrade ozone into oxygen gas and nascent oxygen.

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Yes, it is possible that sending rockets into space will cause damage to the ozone layer. They are not currently a big factor in ozone depletion though.

They don't really "break" it like the wording of the question implies either. As Sam mentions, it's not damaged by the physical aircraft travelling through it.

There does seem to be some concern that an increase in the number of rockets can cause more of an erosion to the ozone layer. The chemicals released from the rockets may work to break down the ozone layer, similar to the issue with CFC's.

This paper says that a type of rocket in the future could release enough black carbon into the atmosphere to contribute as much to ozone depletion as CFC's or commercial aircraft. This would be significant; though currently the pollution from rockets on the ozone layer is not near those levels.

If we keep launching more rockets without suitable measures to prevent pollution, it is definitely possible that they will have a significant impact on the ozone layer, and rockets can do damage to the ozone layer, depending on what chemicals they are exhausting.

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