jul 302013
Planetary ‘Runaway Greenhouse’ Easier Triggered

  It might be easier than previously thought for a planet to overheat into the scorchingly uninhabitable “runaway greenhouse” stage, according to new research by astronomers at the University of Washington and the University of Victoria published July 28 in the journal Nature Geoscience. Illustration of the overheated surface of Venus. Image Credit: ESA/AOES In the [continue reading]

jan 292013
Venus Behaves Like a Comet

  ESA’s Venus Express has made unique observations of Venus during a period of reduced solar wind pressure, discovering that the planet’s ionosphere balloons out like a comet’s tail on its night-side. The change in ionosphere of Venus during normal solar wind conditions (left) and reduced solar wind activity (right), as observed by ESA’s Venus Express [continue reading]

okt 012012
Snow And Ice on Oven-Hot Venus?!

  Venus Express has spied a surprisingly cold region high in the planet’s atmosphere that may be frigid enough for carbon dioxide to freeze out as ice or snow. This image of the Venus southern hemisphere illustrates the terminator – the transitional region between the dayside (left) and nightside of the planet (right). The south [continue reading]

jun 022012
A Hypothesis for Faint Young Sun Paradox

  More than 2 billion years ago, a much fainter sun should have left the Earth as an orbiting ice ball, unfit to develop life as we know it today. Why the Earth avoided the deep freeze is a question that has puzzled scientists, but Purdue University’s David Minton believes he might have an answer. [continue reading]

mei 202012
New Clues to the Geological History of Venus

  ESA’s Venus Express has been used to study the geology in a region near Venus’ equator. Using near-infrared observations collected by the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC), scientists have found evidence that the planet’s rugged highlands are scattered with geochemically more evolved rocks, rather than the basaltic rocks of the volcanic plains. This finding is [continue reading]

mei 142012
The Coming Transit of Venus was Predicted by Edmond Haley

  In the first week of June we will be the last people living today to witness one of the rarest astronomical events: the transit of Venus. A pelican and fishermen go about their routine on the Flagler Beach Pier while Venus creeps slowly across the rising sun. If it’s not cloudy, we need do [continue reading]