One way to reduce global warming is to get our planet farther away from the Sun.

If we placed a couple of thousands of SpaceX's Merlin rockets upside down in the tropics or Sahara i.e. somewhere where the Sun is in zenith at solar noon and fire the rockets at noon say for 10 minutes each day, this should push us slowly away from the Sun.

Would this have a noticeable effect on our orbit around the Sun? One downside would be a 13th (or 14th) month of the year and it would take longer to reach the retirement age. But it could save Manhattan and Miami from disappearing into the ocean waves later this century.

P.S. This process could be reversed in the future if we then experience global cooling, by firing the rockets at midnight. And for terraforming Mars, by moving it closer to the Sun.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I would give up Miami rather than taking longer to retirement age $\endgroup$
    – user65081
    Dec 27, 2020 at 1:48
  • $\begingroup$ Related: physics.stackexchange.com/q/38542/2451 and links therein. $\endgroup$
    – Qmechanic
    Dec 27, 2020 at 2:05

1 Answer 1


Firing rockets where the exhaust never leaves the Earth's atmosphere will not produce any net thrust on the Earth. There would be no reaction mass acting on the Earth/atmosphere system. Also, if it were achievable, acceleration directly away from the Sun would not be the proper angle of acceleration to achieve a higher, circular, and stable orbit as Earth's orbital speed would need to increases well as distance from the sun.


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