Scientists have pondered the possibility of relocating the Earth in case of potential future events that might affect the planet, such as the Sun emitting too much heat and so on, and finally concluded that the inconceivable feasibility could become real.
In about five billion years has been alleged that the Sun will devour all its fuel and enlarge, possibly engulfing our planet. More actual danger is a global warming catastrophe. The mission of relocating the Earth into a larger orbit could help solve these issues, and, in theory, is, apparently possible.
Scientists offer an example which in theory works: let’s say we want to relocate the Earth from its orbit to an orbit about 50 percent away from the Sun, just like Mars’ orbit.
A technique we used for years is the method we utilize when we diverge asteroids from hitting the Earth: nuclear blasts close or on the asteroid’s surface, or a ‘kinetic impactor’ which is a vehicle intentionally colliding with the space rock at high speed. However, these are not suitable for our intent.
Other methods apply gentle and steady push over an extended period, generated by a tugboat anchored on the surface of the space rock, or a spaceship floating nearby, pushing the planet using gravity or other techniques.
This method, as well, would not be applicable for Earth for its mass is enormous when compared to even the most prominent space rocks.
Earth has been moved from its orbit every time a rocket launches from the planet as it gives the Earth a tiny impetus in the reversed direction, however, this impact is too small to aid in the purpose of moving the Earth, as it would take about 300 billion launches to switch the orbit. Then, the material composing all these probes would equal 85% of the Earth, with only 15% of the planet remaining.
A more effective method to hasten the mass, especially ion drives, would be a thruster, which functions by shooting a stream of charged molecules that propels the vehicle forward. The thruster could be pointed and shoot an electric propel at the tracking direction of the planet’s orbit. If an ion beam is being fired at 40 kilometers (25 miles) per second in the correct direction, the equivalent of 13% of the Earth’s diameter in ions would still be needed to, be fired to move the 87% left.
Floating on light
Another technique possible to utilize is a focused laser ray, such as a powerful laser. The necessary power would be harvested from the Sun, and the Earth’s mass would not be used.
However, even by utilizing the sizeable 100GW laser plant foreseen by the Breakthrough Starshot project which wants to thrust probes out of the Solar System so it would explore nearby stars, it would still require three billion years of regular use to move the Earth successfully.
A gravitational slinghot
A famous maneuver that has been widely used by interplanetary spaceships is the ‘gravitational slingshot’. The method changes the speed of two orbiting bodies, and also their momentum, and repeated enough times, it can finally manage a reasonable Earth orbit change.
Some places of the Solar System abound with small stars like comets and asteroids, the volume of which is sufficiently tiny to be relocated with intelligent technology, but still too large to be realistically sent from Earth.
It is also possible to take advantage of the so-called ‘Δv leveraging,’ which is a small object that can be pushed out of its orbit and as an outcome pass near the Earth, generating a broader stimulus to our planet.
However, it was approximated that it would take a million such body nearby passes to keep abreast with the Sun’s inflation.
Of all the techniques aforementioned, the last one appears to be the most realistic and doable at the moment. Although the relocation of our planet might be hypothetically attainable, it might, in fact, be easier to move the humankind to the Mars, which is said to most likely survive the Sun’s havoc.