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The Ultimax Group White Paper #2001-3e
Mirrors and Smoke, & Other Shady Schemes*

by Robert Kennedy, P.E. and Ken Roy, P.E.
robot at ultimax dot com and KIRoy at ultimax dot com

A compendium of slide presentations at:
California Polytechnic State University, Pomona (02Nov2001),
Stanford University (14Nov2001),
to the Friends of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (21Nov2001)
to the Oak Ridge Isochronous Observation Network (05Dec2001),
to the IEEE Oak Ridge and East Tenn. sections (11Dec2001),
as “Dyson Dots”, to the Seventh Symposium on Realistic Near-Term Space Missions, of the International Academy of Astronautics at Aosta, Italy (10-13Jul2011)
as “Dyson Dots”, to be at the “Problems of Adaptation to Climate Change-2011” conference organized by the Russian Academy of Sciences and Russian Federal Service for Hydrometeorology (Roshydromet) at Moscow, Russia (07-09Nov2011)

First, Looking Backward*
(*to justify this Utopian scheme)

solar flux wrangler @ L1, 12K
“Sunflower” by Bill Howe, 2002

updated solar flux wrangler aka Dyson Dot @ L1, 383K
“Dyson Dot: The View from Here” by Robert Kennedy & Debbie Hughes, 2012

Dyson Dot and a maser relay to scale with Earth, 467K
“Dyson Dot and Maser Relay to Scale” by Robert Kennedy & Debbie Hughes, 2012

we could make a Mirrored Maunder Minimum by placing parasols between the Earth and the Sun?
(or, an Engineered Ice Age?)
(or, a Giant-Rheostat-in-the-Sky, GRITS?)
(or, Simulated Symmetric Sunspots?)
(or, Dyson Dots™)

Technically Sweet Synergies


Economic Drivers I
(all figures are close-order-of-magnitude [CoM], ±40%, in constant 2010$, US)

Economic Drivers II
(all CoM figures in 2010$, US)

Economic Drivers III

Economic Drivers IV

Another coincidence way too convenient to ignore...

schematic of sails at L1, 9K

Other Grand Constructions
(all CoM figures in 2010$, US)

Where to Put Parasols?

Kepler’s Laws

Characteristics of Keplerian Orbits

Characteristics of Non-Keplerian Orbits

diagram of Robert Forward’s hovering Statite, 11K
[show Robert Forward’s “Statite” diagram]

Lagrangian Points I

general diagram of Lagrangian points, 4K
[show general Lagrange diagram]

Lagrangian Points II

schematic of sails at L1, 9K
[show penumbral shading diagram]

Lagrangian Points III

Lagrangian Points IV

Control Issues I: Unusual control regime

Control Issues II: More

Recapping Advantages of
(Dyson Dot™, or Giant-Rheostat-in-the-Sky or GRITS, or Mirrored Maunder Minimum, or Simulated Symmetric Sunspots, or Non-Magical Occultation)


Answers to FAQs

About the Authors

RK at NASA Goldstone deep space antenna, 8KRobert G. Kennedy III, PE is president of the Ultimax Group Inc., a corporation distributed across 11 time zones from Moscow to L.A. He speaks enough languages to start bar fights in all of them. Robotics engineer, amateur historian, and jack of all trades, he spent 1994 working for the House Science Committee’s Subcommittee on Space as ASME’s Congressional Fellow. On the Sputnik anniversary in October 1997, he managed to make the Russian evening news. Robert telecommutes from Oak Ridge, Tennessee, where he resides with his wife, numerous cats, the occasional horse, and a yard full of trees and Detroit iron.

Kenneth I. Roy, PE is an engineer working in Oak Ridge amidst relics of the Manhattan Project. Most of his writing concerns how space technology will affect the future. Notably, “Ship Killers from Space”, a cover story of the prestigious Proceedings of the US Naval Institute, developed the strategic implications of basing kinetic energy weapons in low earth orbit. Ken (together with Robert and Dr. Fields) is also the author of “Shell Worlds: An Approach to Terraforming Moons, Small Planets, Plutoids”, which appeared in the January 2009 issue of Journal of the British Interplanetary Society.

David E. Fields, Ph.D. is a physicist, radioastronomer, and gentleman-farmer residing and working near Oak Ridge. Among other duties, he is the director of the Tamke-Allan Observatory, a public all-wave astronomy facility (visible/optical, solar, multi-band radio, and cosmic ray) near Harriman, Tennessee.


I thank my co-authors Ken Roy PE and Dave Fields Ph.D.; as well as Sasha & Alya Smirnov; John Wharton; Eric Hughes; Earl Crabb; David Woolsey; Dwayne A. Day Ph.D.; H.Keith Henson; Mike Markowitz; Steven McCauley, Ph.D.; Les Johnson; Michael R. Johnson PE; Greg Matloff Ph.D.; and B. Derk Bruins Ph.D.
All mistakes are my responsibility.
Particular kudos to:
Anton Smirnov for superb computer artistry.
Mark Seiden for the cute title.
Bill Howe for this excellent CAD rendering of a sunflower-type sail.
Bruce Sterling for the alliterative phrase.
Ken Malpass for this pun.
D. R. Fudge of the ORION stargazing group for pointing out this excellent, and traditionally Southern, acronym.
Dave Fields for coining the Dyson Dot™ moniker.
Marianne Mueller and the AMW Committee for moral and logistical support.
Dr.-Ing. Giancarlo Genta, Ms. Giusy Spinisanta and the IAA Organizing Committee for a life-changing opportunity.
Akademik Yuriy Izrael and his colleagues at Rosgidromet and the Russian Academy of Sciences, as well as the Organizing Committee of PACC-2011 for their generosity, logistical support, and legendary Russian hospitality.
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Update/Event Log

15Feb2001; post original as presented to STAIF 2001
15Feb2001; covered on ABC Evening News
20Feb2001; replace Table 1 with Tables 1-3.
23Feb2001; upload figures and equations.
25April2001; presentation of "AntiVenuforming Terra" at 27th Asilomar Microcomputer Workshop.
24May2001; update figures in Tables 1-3 to reflect limb darkening, L1 stationing.
07Jul2001: "Mirrors & Smoke" appears in Whole Earth Review.
24Sep2001: Finish computer graphic animation of "Mirrors & Smoke" for Belgian national television RTBF - Matière Grise (in English, “Grey Matter”). Low-rezz version of CG video archived here.
02Nov2001: Deliver invited physics seminar "Mirrors & Smoke: Changing the Solar Constant to a Solar Variable" at California Polytechnic State University, Pomona.
14Nov2001: Deliver invited engineering seminar "Mirrors & Smoke, and Other Shady Schemes" at Stanford University Computer Systems Laboratory Colloquium (EE380).
21Nov2001: Deliver luncheon lecture with updated economic forecasts to Friends of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
30Jan2007: Advise ABC News Good Morning America re technical background and graphic to illustrate mirrors-in-space concept:
GMA graphic for Mirrors in Space, 14K © American Broadcasting Company. Note: Not at all to scale.
07Aug2009: Co-author Ken Roy discusses "Geoengineering to Fight Climate Change" at 67th World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon aka Anticipation), Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The question with co-panelists Paolo Bacigalupi and S.M. Stirling (no show!), "From giant space mirrors to salt water sprays, are there engineering solutions to climate change?" See panel session #2-340, 8 PM, in room P-512DH Science and Space track. See also page 51 of the program.
13Oct2009: Lecture ORICL, update econ. figs. to constant 2008$.
2010: Update econ. figs. to constant 2010$.
10-13Jul2011: Dyson Dots presented by Robert Kennedy at “Missions to the Outer Solar System and Beyond” / Seventh Symposium on Realistic Near-Term Space Missions, of the International Academy of Astronautics at Aosta, Italy.
07-09Nov2011: Dyson Dots: Changing the Solar Constant to a Solar Variable with Giant PV Lightsails, to be presented by Robert Kennedy, PE at “Problems of Adaptation to Climate Change-2011” organized by the Russian Academy of Sciences and Russian Federal Service for Hydrometeorology (Roshydromet) at Moscow, Russia.

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Statites © by Robert Forward.
Technical content of this paper © 2001 by the authors, Robert Kennedy & Ken Roy.
Figures #2, #3, Lagrange.gif, Halo.gif, and Penumbra.gif © 2001, by The Ultimax Group, Inc. All other material (except open-source images per GNU Free Documentation License as noted) are copyright © 1994-2011 by The Ultimax Group, Inc.

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