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Amateur author seeking help on attacking ozone layer

  1. Oct 25, 2016 #1
    Hi, I'm looking for plausible fiction based content regarding environmental destruction. Sort of future UV wars or something.
    So here goes.
    Would appreciate any ideas or feedback on what I've come up with so far.
    Several dissidents build 12ft mirrored parabolic dishes which shine narrow focussed hi-intensity (50,000 watt+, ~285nm) UV beams skyward. Computer controlled, the beams slowly flood the sky 24/7 above the city with a beam intended to convert much of the ozone layer O^3 to O^2, where the skyward beam results in a ~15Watt intensity on the upper stratosphere (O^3), compared to the natural sunlight UV of ~1Watt. Thus overall UV protection is greatly reduced over time, allowing hi-intensity uv radiation to damage all life in the city.

    I have just started to study atmospheric physics/chemistry for writing, and don't know whether the above is even slightly realistic. So if possible, can you guys try to guide me towards more plausible story content than I have so far.

    Will be back everyday to check for comments.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 25, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    I would expect that you need a huge amount of power for a small effect.

    The people in the city can install glass roofs, use umbrellas and so on as shield against UV. Or they just send some missiles to the people with the huge UV sources. It's not like they would be difficult to detect.
  4. Oct 25, 2016 #3


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    Here are some problems I see with this evil scheme:
    1) If it takes a long time to build up the effect, I am guessing that high level winds would move the irradiated ozone layer to a different longitude. This would then require zapping the whole ozone layer to effect a single city, or at least a latitudinal band.
    2) If it is not blowing around up there (or the effect of the zapping is quick), you would still have to zap all the sky, in the path of the Sun (before or when it gets there), to maximize UV at the surface.
    3) Lasers are smaller and would be a more easily hidden source of UV. Why not use them?
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