Sample records for venus express mission

  1. Venus Express - Mission Overview and present Status

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, Håkan; Titov, Dmitri; Witasse, Olivier

    The Venus Express spacecraft arrived to Venus and was inserted into orbit on 11 April 2006. The two first years of operations have passed without any major problems and the spacecraft and its scientific instruments are in a very good condition. Well above one Terabit of data has been downlinked to ground and a large number of new results are emerging from the analysis. This paper will give an overview of the mission and briefly summarize the present status and a few selected first results from Venus orbit as an introduction to the invited talks to follow by the PIs of the respective instruments.

  2. Review of Venus Express Mission Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanchez Perez, J. M.; Rodriguez Canabal, J.

    This paper summarizes the main results of the mission analysis of the 2005 launch window of Venus Express. The operational orbit is a polar eccentric orbit with about a 1 day period. The orbit is well suited to study the atmosphere, the plasma environment and for remote observations. The launch window using the Soyuz+Fregat launcher is open for 30 days with the use of 10 launch programs. The capture at Venus will be done with the main engine into a 6.2 days orbit using about the 70% of the fuel budget and the reduction of the apocenter with a main engine manoeuvre plus one or two manoeuvres with the reaction control thrusters. The operational orbit is perturbed by the Sun gravity pull such that the argument of the pericenter decreases and the pericenter altitude increases. During the mission lifetime the pericenter altitude will be controlled in a band from 250 to 400 Km. Abbreviations and Symbols V? Hyperbolic Velocity Modulus ?? Hyperbolic Velocity Declination ?? Hyperbolic Velocity Right Ascension A-T Along-Track C-T Cross track R Radial r Position Vector v Velocity Vector deg degrees T Thrust ME Main Engine RCT Reaction control thrusters Isp Specific Impulse (seconds) LP Launch Program ?V Delta-V ? Argument of pericenter ? Standard deviation ? Right Ascension of the Ascending Node

  3. Scientific goals for the observation of Venus by VIRTIS on ESA\\/Venus express mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    P. Drossart; G. Piccioni; A. Adriani; F. Angrilli; G. Arnold; K. H. Baines; G. Bellucci; J. Benkhoff; B. Bézard; J.-P. Bibring; A. Blanco; M. I. Blecka; R. W. Carlson; A. Coradini; A. Di Lellis; T. Encrenaz; S. Erard; S. Fonti; V. Formisano; T. Fouchet; R. Garcia; R. Haus; J. Helbert; N. I. Ignatiev; P. G. J. Irwin; Y. Langevin; S. Lebonnois; M. A. Lopez-Valverde; D. Luz; L. Marinangeli; V. Orofino; A. V. Rodin; M. C. Roos-Serote; B. Saggin; A. Sanchez-Lavega; D. M. Stam; F. W. Taylor; D. Titov; G. Visconti; M. Zambelli; R. Hueso; C. C. C. Tsang; C. F. Wilson; T. Z. Afanasenko

    2007-01-01

    The Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) on board the ESA\\/Venus Express mission has technical specifications well suited for many science objectives of Venus exploration. VIRTIS will both comprehensively explore a plethora of atmospheric properties and processes and map optical properties of the surface through its three channels, VIRTIS-M-vis (imaging spectrometer in the 0.3–1?m range), VIRTIS-M-IR (imaging spectrometer in

  4. Venus Express science planning

    Microsoft Academic Search

    D. V. Titov; H. Svedhem; D. Koschny; R. Hoofs; S. Barabash; J.-L. Bertaux; P. Drossart; V. Formisano; B. Häusler; O. Korablev; W. J. Markiewicz; D. Nevejans; M. Pätzold; G. Piccioni; T. L. Zhang; D. Merritt; O. Witasse; J. Zender; A. Accomazzo; M. Sweeney; D. Trillard; M. Janvier; A. Clochet

    2006-01-01

    Venus Express is the first European mission to the planet Venus. Its payload consists of seven instruments and will investigate the atmosphere, the plasma environment, and the surface of Venus from orbit. Science planning is a complex process that takes into account requests from all experiments and the operational constraints. The planning of the science operations is based on synergetic

  5. Magellan Mission to Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    The Magellan Mission to Venus Home is now available at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab. The Magellan mission ended with a dramatic plunge into the atmosphere of Venus, the first time an operating spacecraft has ever been intentionally crashed into a planet. On October 11, 1994, Magellan's thrusters were fired in four sequences to lower its orbit into the atmosphere of Venus for its final experiment -- to gather data on Venus' high atmosphere. Within two days after these maneuvers, the spacecraft became caught in the atmosphere and plunged to the surface. Although most of Magellan will be vaporized during the fiery descent, some sections of the spacecraft will probably hit the planet's surface. The latest updates on Magellan's status -- as well as a comprehensive gallery of images and information from the five-year mission -- are available on the home page.

  6. The Pioneer Venus Missions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Mountain View, CA. Ames Research Center.

    This document provides detailed information on the atmosphere and weather of Venus. This pamphlet describes the technological hardware including the probes that enter the Venusian atmosphere, the orbiter and the launch vehicle. Information is provided in lay terms on the mission profile, including details of events from launch to mission end. The…

  7. Investigations of the Venus plasma environment with the ASPERA-4 experiment on the ESA Venus Express mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barabash, S.; Aspera-4 Team

    2003-04-01

    For the ESA Venus Express mission to be launched in November 2005 Analyzer of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) has been selected as a part of the core payload. The instrument is a copy of the experiment Aspera-3 to be flown to Mars on the ESA Mars Express mission. The general scientific objective of the ASPERA-4 experiment, to study the solar wind - atmosphere interaction and characterize the plasma and neutral gas environment in the near-Venus space through energetic neutral atom (ENA) imaging, are similar to the Martian mission. We thus have the unique opportunity to investigate two non-magnetized planets with identical instrumentation. The ASPERA-3 instrument comprises four sensors, two ENA sensors and an electron and ion spectrometer. The Neutral Particle Imager (NPI) provides measurements of the integral ENA flux in the energy range 0.1 - 60 keV with no mass and energy resolution but comparatively high angular resolution 4.6 deg. x 11.5 deg. The Neutral Particle Detector (NPD) provides measurements of the ENA flux in the energy range 0.1 - 10 keV, resolving velocity and mass (H and O) with a coarse angular resolution. The Electron Spectrometer (ELS) is a standard top-hat electrostatic analyzer in a very compact design. These three sensors are located on a scanning platform to cover ideally the full sphere. The instrument also contains a mass resolving sensor, IMA (Ion Mass Analyzer). IMA provides ion measurements in the energy range 0.01 - 30 keV/q for the main ion components ( 1, 2, 4, 16 amu/q) and the group of molecular ions (20 - 80 amu/q). The instantaneous field of view is 4.6 deg. x 360 deg. Electrostatic sweeping performs the elevation (90 deg.) coverage.

  8. From Mars Express to Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koeck, C.; Poinsignon, V.

    2002-01-01

    Venus Express, an Orbiter for the study of the atmosphere, the plasma environment, and the surface of Venus, is a mission which was proposed to ESA in response to the Call for ideas to re-use the Mars Express platform issued in March 2001. This mission was selected by ESA in June 2001 for an assessment study which was carried out over a 3-month period. The study, performed in the period July-October 2001, by ESA, Astrium and a team of scientific institutes has demonstrated that an orbiter mission to Venus could be carried out by adapting the Mars-Express satellite designed for a mission to Mars. The Mars Express spacecraft is under development for ESA by Astrium SAS of France. It is planned for launch in mid-2003, by a Soyuz-Fregat rocket. Its adaptation to a Venusian mission proved to be feasible with limited design modifications, essentially in the field of thermal control architecture and hardware. Taking thus advantage of the high level of recurrence and the optimum phasing between both projects, a launch during the Venus window of November 2005 appears to be feasible with an adequate schedule margin, and a moderate cost. The Venus Express mission and satellite are based on the following instruments set inherited from Mars Express and Rosetta programmes : Energetic Neutral Atoms Analyzer (ASPERA, from Mars Express), Atmospheric High Resolution Fourier Spectrometer (PFS, also from Mars Express), UV &IR Atmospheric Spectrometer (SPICAM, from Mars Express, complemented by SOIR), Radar Sounder VenSIS, adapted from the Mars Express MarSIS, Venus Monitoring Camera (new instrument, but with ROSETTA heritage), UV-Visible-near-IR imaging Spectrometer VIRTIS (from ROSETTA), Radio Science (VeRA, also on ROSETTA). The study demonstrated the feasibility of the proposed mission to Venus in 2005, based on the Mars Express spacecraft. The required adaptation of the spacecraft identified along the study is related to the thermal aspects during the orbital phase around Venus. This is due mainly to a solar flux four times stronger at Venus than at Mars, as well as a planet albedo which is much higher. In spite of this, the whole system approach (thermal control architecture and satellite pointing strategy for observation and for communication with the Earth) has been adapted from the Mars Express one, without introducing major modifications. The presentation will describe the Venus-Express mission and the spacecraft design. It will mainly focus on the technical feasibility of the adaptation of the Mars Express spacecraft to a Venus mission and discus the main programmatics constraints resulting from a short development imposed by the requirement to meet the 2005 launch opportunity.

  9. Magnetic field investigation of the Venus plasma environment: Expected new results from Venus Express

    Microsoft Academic Search

    T. L. Zhang; W. Baumjohann; M. Delva; H.-U. Auster; A. Balogh; C.T. Russell; S. Barabash; M. Balikhin; G. Berghofer; H. K. Biernat; H. Lammer; H. Lichtenegger; W. Magnes; R. Nakamura; T. Penz; K. Schwingenschuh; Z. Vörös; W. Zambelli; K.-H. Fornacon; K.-H. Glassmeier; I. Richter; C. Carr; K. Kudela; J. K. Shi; H. Zhao; U. Motschmann; J.-P. Lebreton

    2006-01-01

    The Venus Express mission is scheduled for launch in 2005. Among many other instruments, it carries a magnetometer to investigate the Venus plasma environment. Although Venus has no intrinsic magnetic moment, magnetic field measurements are essential in studying the solar wind interaction with Venus. Our current understanding of the solar wind interaction with Venus is mainly from the long lasting

  10. Venus Express Italian Day on 4 October

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2004-09-01

    Venus Express is the first European mission to this, the second planet in the Solar System. Often referred to as ‘Earth’s twin’, Venus holds many mysteries that intrigue scientists. The main question is why a planet similar to Earth in size, mass and composition could have evolved so differently over the course of the last four thousand million years. Venus Express will make the first multispectral global examination of the atmosphere of Venus. Completely different from the one around Earth, the Venusian atmosphere appears to be hot and dense. Venus Express will investigate the choking ‘greenhouse’ effect, the hurricane-force winds that encircle the planet, and its mysteriously weak magnetic field. Completion of assembly of the Venus Express spacecraft, including integration and testing of the flight equipment and experiments, is an important milestone. Scheduled for launch on 26 October 2005, Venus Express is currently being made ready for shipment to Astrium, ESA’s prime contractor, in Toulouse, France in mid-October this year. There, further tests to prove the spacecraft's flight readiness will take place. The programme of the event is as follows: 10:30 - Welcoming addresses L.M. Quaglino, Director of Alenia Spazio Infrastructures and Scientific Satellites M. Coradini, ESA Solar System Missions Coordinator 10:45 - ESA presentations The Venus Express project, D. McCoy, ESA Project Manager for Venus Express The Scientific Mission, H. Svedhem, ESA Project Scientist for Venus Express 11:30 - Alenia Spazio: Role and activities on Venus Express G. Finocchiaro and M. Patroncini, Alenia Spazio Project Management for Venus Express The presentations will be followed by a visit to the Venus Express Hardware and a Q & A session. The programme will be concluded with a buffet lunch at 13:00.

  11. The Role of Different Parameters in the Pressurant Budget of Venus Express and its Dynamic Evolution during the Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valencia Bel, F.; Lang, M.

    2004-10-01

    An insufficient amount of pressurant gas in the propulsion system or a working temperature in the pressurant tank outside the qualification limits can cause a decrease in the performance of the thrusters or even the loss of the mission. This paper presents an engineering tool used able to compute the Pressurant budget of a mission and the effects of influencing parameters. The updated tool allows to also compute the temperature, pressure and mass evolution inside the pressurant tank during the various mission phases. The tool has been used to verify the calculations done by Astrium Stevenage for Mars Express and Venus Express [1]. The pressurant gas used for both cases was helium. The tool permits to use other combinations of pressurant gases and propellants for different propellant systems (monopropellant and bipropellant systems).

  12. The Analyser of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) for the Venus Express mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    S. Barabash; J.-A. Sauvaud; H. Gunell; H. Andersson; A. Grigoriev; K. Brinkfeldt; M. Holmström; R. Lundin; M. Yamauchi; K. Asamura; W. Baumjohann; T. L. Zhang; A. J. Coates; D. R. Linder; D. O. Kataria; C. C. Curtis; K. C. Hsieh; B. R. Sandel; A. Fedorov; C. Mazelle; J.-J. Thocaven; M. Grande; Hannu E. J. Koskinen; E. Kallio; T. Säles; P. Riihela; J. Kozyra; N. Krupp; J. Woch; J. Luhmann; S. McKenna-Lawlor; S. Orsini; R. Cerulli-Irelli; M. Mura; M. Milillo; M. Maggi; E. Roelof; P. Brandt; C. T. Russell; K. Szego; J. D. Winningham; R. A. Frahm; J. Scherrer; J. R. Sharber; P. Wurz; P. Bochsler

    2007-01-01

    The general scientific objective of the ASPERA-4 (Analyser of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms) experiment is to study the solar wind–atmosphere interaction and characterise the plasma and neutral gas environment in the near-Venus space through energetic neutral atom (ENA) imaging and local charged particle measurements. The studies to be performed address the fundamental question: How strongly do the interplanetary plasma

  13. The Venusian induced magnetosphere: A case study of plasma and magnetic field measurements on the Venus Express mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    E. Kallio; T. L. Zhang; S. Barabash; R. Jarvinen; I. Sillanpaaa; P. Janhunen; A. Fedorov; J.-A. Sauvaud; C. Mazelle; J.-J. Thocaven; H. Gunell; H. Andersson; A. Grigoriev; K. Brinkfeldt; Y. Futaana; M. Holmström; R. Lundin; M. Yamauchi; K. Asamura; W. Baumjohann; H. Lammer; A. J. Coates; D. R. Linder; D. O. Kataria; C. C. Curtis; K. C. Hsieh; B. R. Sandel; M. Grande; H. E. J. Koskinen; T. Säles; W. Schmidt; P. Riihelä; J. Kozyra; N. Krupp; J. Woch; J. G. Luhmann; S. McKenna-Lawlor; S. Orsini; R. Cerulli-Irelli; A. Mura; A. Milillo; M. Maggi; E. Roelof; P. Brandt; C. T. Russell; K. Szego; J. D. Winningham; R. A. Frahm; J. R. Scherrer; J. R. Sharber; P. Wurz; P. Bochsler

    2008-01-01

    Plasma and magnetic field measurements made onboard the Venus Express on June 1, 2006, are analyzed and compared with predictions of a global model. It is shown that in the orbit studied, the plasma and magnetic field observations obtained near the North Pole under solar minimum conditions were qualitatively and, in many cases also, quantitatively in agreement with the general

  14. Geochemistry of Venus: Progress, Prospects and New Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treiman, A. H.

    2009-04-01

    Available geochemical data on Venus' surface materials are limited and of poor precision. Those data were obtained by the Venera and VEGA lander missions, which were engineering and scientific triumphs of their days. However, their chemical analyses of the Venus surface do not permit detailed geochemical interpretations, such as are routine for terrestrial analyses and MER APXS rover analyses from Mars. In particular, the Venera and VEGA analyses of major elements (by XRF) did not return abundances of Na, and their data on Mg and Al are little more than detections at the 2s level. Their analyses for K, U, and Th (by gamma rays) are imprecise, except for one (Venera 8) with extremely high K contents (~4% K2O) and one (Venera 9) with a non-chondritic U/Th abundance ratio. In addition, the Venera and VEGA landers sampled only materials from the Venus lowlands - they did not target sites in any of the highland areas: shield volcanoes, tesserae, nor the unique plateau construct of Ishtar Terra. The Virtis imaging spectrometer on Venus Express has provided new global data of likely geochemical importance - maps of surface emittance at near 1.2 µm - but it remains unclear just what causes its observed variations in emittance. The limitations of the available data on Venus' surface rock compositions and mineralogy highlight the huge opportunities in additional chemical and mineralogical analyses of Venus' surface. In geochemistry, currently available instruments could provide much more precise analyses for major and minor elements, even within the engineering constraints of the Venera / VEGA lander systems. Such precise analyses would be welcome for basalts of Venus' lowland plains, but would be especially desirable for the highland tesserae and for Ishtar Terra. The tesserae may well represent ancient crust that predates the most recent volcanic resurfacing event and so provide a geochemical look into Venus' distant past. Ishtar Terra may be composed (at least in part) of granitic rocks like Earth's continental crust, which required abundant water to form. So, Ishtar Terra could possibly yield evidence on whether Venus once had an ocean, and thus the possibility of life. The mineralogy of Venus' surface materials will reflect not only its rocks, but also their chemical weathering in the hot, dense, corrosive Venus atmosphere. Mineralogical instruments at the Venus surface (like XRD or Raman) could test various theories of surface atmosphere interactions, like carbonate buffering of atmospheric CO2, sulfide/sulfate buffering of SO2, and origin of Venus' low emissivity highlands as iron sulfide or as metallic tellurium frost. The geochemistry of Venus' surface would be learned best in lander missions, which are under consideration from several agencies. Current mission concepts are severely limited durations at Venus' surface before they succumb to its high temperature. However, high-temperature electronics and power systems are under development. Surface-atmosphere interactions, and hence surface mineralogy, can be constrained indirectly by probes of Venus' lower atmosphere (with or without soft landing). And improved radar imagery and altimetry can provide crucial indirect constraints on surface mineralogy and geology via emissivity and geophysical constraints (e.g., whether Ishtar Terra could be a granitic continent).

  15. Venera-D -the future Russian mission to Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zasova, Ludmila; Zelenyi, Lev; Korablev, Oleg; Sanko, N. F.; Khartov, Victor V.; Vorontsov, Victor A.; Basilevsky, A. T.; Pichkhadze, Konstantin M.; Elkin, Konstantin S.; Voron, Victor V.

    Venus was actively studied by Soviet and US mission in 60-80-th years of the last century. The investigations carried out both from the orbit and in situ were highly successful. After a 15-years break in space research of Venus, the ESA Venus Express mission, launched in 2005, successfully continues its work on orbit around Venus. In 2010 the launch of the Japanese Climate Orbiter (Planeta-C) mission is planned. However, many questions concerning the structure, and evolu-tions of planet Venus, which are the key questions of comparative planetology, very essential for understanding the evolution of the terrestrial climate, cannot be solved by observations from an orbit. Now in Russia the new investigation phase of Venus begins: the mission Venera-D is included in the Russian Federal Space Program to be launched in 2016. This mission includes the lander, balloons, and the orbiter. The long living balloons are planned to be deployed at different heights, in the clouds and under the clouds. Scientific goals of the mission include: -investigation of structure, chemical composition of the atmosphere, including noble gases abundance and isotopic ratio, structure and chemistry of the clouds; -study of dynamics of the atmosphere, nature of the superrotation, radiative balance, nature of an enormous greenhouse effect; -study of structure, mineralogy and geochemistry of the surface, search for seismic and volcanic activity, the lightening, interaction of the atmosphere and the surface; -investigation of the upper atmosphere, ionosphere, magnetosphere, and the escape rate; -study of the evolution of the atmosphere and the surface of Venus. The complex of experiments on the orbiter includes, among the others, several spectrometers in the spectral range from UV to MW, the mapping spectrometers and the plasma package. On the lander there are instruments to work during the descent, and on the surface: gas-chromatograph, PTW (meteo), nephelometer and the particle sizes spectrometer, optical package, active gamma-spectrometer, TV-complex, which includes panoramic, high resolution and descending cameras.. On the balloon which has to work near the lower boundary of clouds, the devices will be installed to study the lower atmosphere and to get the surface images with high resolution at 1 mkm. Successful realization of the project Venera-D will allow to solve the important scientific problems of comparative planetology. In particular it will help to understand why do Venus and the Earth (sister-planets), similar in many aspects, being formed at similar conditions in the protoplanet nebula, evolve by such a different way.

  16. Systems Analysis for a Venus Aerocapture Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lockwood, Mary Kae; Starr, Brett R.; Paulson, John W., Jr.; Kontinos, Dean A.; Chen, Y. K.; Laub, Bernard; Olejniczak, Joseph; Wright, Michael J.; Takashima, Naruhisa; Justus, Carl G.

    2006-01-01

    Previous high level analysis has indicated that significant mass savings may be possible for planetary science missions if aerocapture is employed to place a spacecraft in orbit. In 2001 the In-Space Propulsion program identified aerocapture as one of the top three propulsion technologies for planetary exploration but that higher fidelity analysis was required to verify the favorable results and to determine if any supporting technology gaps exist that would enable or enhance aerocapture missions. A series of three studies has been conducted to assess, from an overall system point of view, the merit of using aerocapture at Titan, Neptune and Venus. These were chosen as representative of a moon with an atmosphere, an outer giant gas planet and an inner planet. The Venus mission, based on desirable science from plans for Solar System Exploration and Principal Investigator proposals, to place a spacecraft in a 300km polar orbit was examined and the details of the study are presented in this paper.

  17. Magnetic observations of Venus ionosphere during Venus Express aerobraking campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Tielong; Baumjohann, Wolfgang; Russell, Christopher; Luhmann, Janet

    2015-04-01

    During the late days of the Venus Express mission, an aerobraking campaign was performed in May - July 2014. The altering of the spacecraft orbit allows the pericenter went to as low as 129.7 km in altitude, which is well below the main peak ionosphere altitude of ~140 km. Magnetic observations during aerobraking campaign shows that the Venus ionosphere exhibits the same magnetic properties as observed by Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) during solar maximum for altitude above 150 km which was the lowest altitude reached by PVO: magnetized ionosphere with large-scale horizontal magnetic field; or unmagnetized ionosphere with numerous small-scale thin structures, so-called flux ropes. However, around or below main peak ionosphere altitude, we find only very low background magnetic field of several nanotesla, without any large magnetic belt or larger spikes of fields, the so-called flux ropes. Apparently the magnetization of the ionosphere or the penetration of the magnetic ropes stops at main peak ionosphere altitude.

  18. The final year of Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, Håkan

    2015-04-01

    The Venus Express mission ended in December 2014 after having run out of fuel after 8.5 years of continuous operation in orbit around our sister planet. The last year in operation was characterised by a number of dedicated science campaigns and the aerobraking in June-July, and the subsequent special operations in the new 22.5 hour orbit post aerobraking. This talk will summarise the activities and the main results of the last year in operation, including the aerobraking, and discuss the events leading up to the declaration of end of mission following the end of fuel condition.

  19. Planet-C: Venus Climate Orbiter mission of Japan

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Masato Nakamura; Takeshi Imamura; Munetaka Ueno; Naomoto Iwagami; Takehiko Satoh; Shigeto Watanabe; Makoto Taguchi; Yukihiro Takahashi; Makoto Suzuki; Takumi Abe; George L. Hashimoto; Takeshi Sakanoi; Shoichi Okano; Yasumasa Kasaba; Jun Yoshida; Manabu Yamada; Nobuaki Ishii; Takahiro Yamada; Kazunori Uemizu; Tetsuya Fukuhara; Koh-Ichiro Oyama

    2007-01-01

    The Venus Climate Orbiter mission (PLANET-C), one of the future planetary missions of Japan, aims at understanding the atmospheric circulation of Venus. Meteorological information will be obtained by globally mapping clouds and minor constituents successively with four cameras at ultraviolet and infrared wavelengths, detecting lightning with a high-speed imager, and observing the vertical structure of the atmosphere with radio science

  20. Life after Venus Express: Science goals for a European Venus radar orbiter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Colin; Ghail, Richard

    ESA’s Venus Express mission has led to a renaissance of Venus science, following a dearth of Venus missions in the previous 15 years. Venus Express has made many discoveries in atmospheric science, for which its payload was optimised; however it has also provided tantalising hints about the geological activity of the planet. Mesospheric sulphur dioxide abundances vary by 1000% on decadal timescales, in a pattern which suggests episodic volcanic injections [Marcq et al. Nature Geosci 2013; Esposito, Science 1984]; anomalous emissivity near suggest volcanic hotspots implies geologically recent, as-yet-unweathered lava flows [Smrekar et al., Science 2010]; and recent results, if confirmed, show temporal evolution of thermal emission from some regions of the surface may be direct evidence of volcanic activity during the duration of the VEx mission [Shalygin et al., LPSC 2014]. While there are more results to be obtained yet from the Venus Express dataset, further investigation of these phenomena will require a new Venus mission. We therefore propose an orbiter mission focussed on characterising the geological activity of Venus. The key instrument would be a Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). Why a radar mission following NASA’s Magellan mission? Radar capabilities are vastly improved in the last 30 years and a modern radar would be capable of spatial resolution approaching two orders of magnitude better than that from Magellan; this enables a wide range of investigations, from detailed study of tectonic, volcanic and Aeolian features, to stratigraphy for better reconstruction of geological epochs. Interferometric SAR could also be used to study the centimetre-scale surface deformations due to current volcanic or tectonic activity. Constraints on interior structure can be obtained not only from improved gravity mapping (from spacecraft tracking) but also by studying the spin state of Venus from high-resolution radar measurements. The radar measurements will be complemented by a further suite of instruments which may include a dedicated surface emission mapper using near-infrared spectral windows; a spectrometer suite to map sulphur dioxide and other possibly volcanic gases; and possibly a subsurface sounding radar to reveal the structure of lava flows and other surface structures. This mission, following on from the 2007 EVE [Chassefière et al., Exp. Astron 2009] and 2010 Envision [Ghail et al., Exp. Astron 2012] proposals, is being developed for proposal to ESA as a “Medium-class” mission in late 2014.

  1. Your Mission: Investigate the geographical features on Venus and map the locations of space missions to Venus using a computer mapping program called Jules Verne Voyager

    E-print Network

    Smith-Konter, Bridget

    1 Your Mission: Investigate the geographical features on Venus and map the locations of space missions to Venus using a computer mapping program called Jules Verne Voyager Venus. Your Task: 1. Using the internet, navigate to the following webpage: http://jules.unavco.org/Voyager/Venus

  2. ESA's Venus Express to reach final destination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-04-01

    First step: catching Venus To begin to explore our Earth’s hot and hazy sister planet, Venus Express must complete a critical first step, the most challenging one following launch. This involves a set of complex operations and manoeuvres that will inject the spacecraft into orbit. The Venus Orbit Insertion (VOI) manoeuvre allows the spacecraft to reduce its speed relative to Venus, so that it can be captured by the planet’s gravitation. The manoeuvre is a critical one which must proceed at precisely the right place and time. The VOI phase officially started on 4 April and will not be completed until 13 April. It is split into three main sub-phases. The first consists in preparing or initialising the spacecraft for the actual capture manoeuvre so as to avoid the risk of the spacecraft going into safe mode, should parameters unrelated to VOI go off-range. The capture manoeuvre itself consists of a main-engine burn lasting about 50 minutes on the morning of 11 April starting at 09:17 (Central European Summer Time). This is the second main VOI sub-phase. The final sub-phase will be restoring all spacecraft functions, notably resuming communications with Earth and uplinking the commands to be executed during the preliminary ‘capture’ orbit. Orbital capture is controlled by an automatic sequence of predefined commands, uploaded to the spacecraft four days prior to VOI. This sequence is the minimum set needed to perform the main-engine burn. All spacecraft operations are controlled and commanded by the ground control team located at ESA’s European Spacecraft Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany. Timeeline of major VOI events (some times subject to change) 4 Aprilacecraft transmitter connected to low gain antenna is switched on. During its interplanetary cruise and during the scientific part of the mission to come, Venus Express communicates with Earth by means of its two high gain antennas. However, during the orbit capture phase (11 April), these two antennas become unusable because of the spacecraft’s required orientation at that time. The low gain antenna, carrying a feeble but instantly recognisable signal, will be transmitting throughout all VOI manoeuvres. This will allow ground controllers to monitor the velocity change during the burn, using NASA’s Deep Space Network’s 70-metre antenna near Madrid, Spain. No other means of communication with the Earth is possible during the capture burn. 5 and 9 April, targeting control manoeuvres. Two time slots are available to adjust course if needed. Given the high accuracy of the course correction performed end of March, Venus Express is currently on the right trajectory for a successful capture into orbit and it is therefore unlikely that either of these two extra slots will be required. 10 to 11 April, final preparations for VOI manoeuvre. 24 to 12 hours before VOI, spacecraft controllers will command Venus Express into its final configuration for the burn. Over the final 12 hours, they will monitor its status, ready to deal with any contingencies requiring last-minute trajectory correction or any revising of the main-engine burn duration. 11 April, 08:03 (CEST), ‘slew’ manoeuvre. This manoeuvre lasts about half an hour and rotates Venus Express so that the main engine faces the direction of motion. Thanks to this, the burn will slow down (rather than accelerate) the spacecraft. 11 April, 09:17 (CEST), main-engine burn starts. A few minutes after firing of the spacecraft thrusters to make sure the propellant settles in the feed lines to the main engine, the latter will begin its 50-minute long burn, ending at 10:07. This thrust will reduce the initial velocity of 29 000 kilometres per hour (in relation to Venus) by 15 percent, allowing capture. Venus Express will settle into its preliminary, elongated nine-day orbit. On capture, it will be at about 120 million kilometres from the Earth and, at its nearest point, within 400 km of the surface of Venus. During the burn, at 09:45 (CEST), Venus Express will disappear behind the planet and will not be visi

  3. Characterizing the low-altitude magnetic belt at Venus: Complementary observations from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter and Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villarreal, M. N.; Russell, C. T.; Wei, H. Y.; Ma, Y. J.; Luhmann, J. G.; Strangeway, R. J.; Zhang, T. L.

    2015-03-01

    Using Venus Express, Zhang et al. (2012b) identified strong magnetic field enhancements at low altitudes over the north polar region of Venus as giant flux ropes. Strong fields at low altitudes were also observed during the Pioneer Venus Orbiter mission, but at low latitudes near the subsolar and midnight regions. We examine the possibility that the Venus Express observations are not giant flux ropes, but part of a low-altitude magnetic belt that builds up in the subsolar region, passes over the terminator, and extends to the nightside. Our analysis indicates the magnetic belt is dominantly horizontal over the dayside and gains a radial component nightward. The peak magnetic field strength of the belt and the altitude at which it peaks also varies around the planet, with the lowest altitude and strongest field strength in the subsolar region, consistent with the idea of the belt forming on the dayside. Zhang et al. (2012b) also noted the fields in the polar region had a bias in the +By direction in Venus Solar Orbital coordinates. The multifluid magnetohydrodynamic simulation we present shows an asymmetry in the plasma flow from the subsolar region to the poles due to the oxygen ion and proton mass ratio. This causes the magnetic field to preferentially accumulate in the north for a +By interplanetary magnetic field direction, providing an explanation for this bias.

  4. Enabling Venus In Situ Missions Using Mechanically Deployed Aerodynamic Decelerator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saikia, S. J.; Saranathan, H.; Grant, M. J.; Longuski, J. M.

    2014-06-01

    Trade study and optimal solutions for guided entry and aerocapture for Venus in situ missions using Mechanically Deployed Aerodynamic Decelerator to reduce peak deceleration loads, as well as peak heat fluxes.

  5. PLANET-C: Venus Climate Orbiter Mission of Japan

    Microsoft Academic Search

    M. Ueno; M. Nakamura; T. Imamura; N. Iwagami; T. Satoh; S. Watanabe; M. Taguchi; Y. Takahashi; M. Suzuki; M. Yamada; G. Hashimoto; Y. Kasaba; T. Fukuhara; K. Uemizu; T. Abe; N. Ishii; K. Oyama

    2006-01-01

    Venus is one of the most attractive targets in the solar system when we seek to understand the formation of the terrestrial environment. Venus is our nearest neighbor, and has a size very similar to the Earth's; however, previous spacecraft missions discovered an extremely dense (~90 bar) and dry CO[2] atmosphere with H[2]SO[4]-H[2]O clouds floating at high altitudes, and exotic

  6. Venus Express Magnetometer Contribution to Space Plasma Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Tielong

    Venus Express (VEX), the first European satellite to Venus, is primarily a planetary mission itself and the main scientific objective is a comprehensive investigation of Venus atmosphere and plasma environment. But the plasma payload is very limited with only a plasma instrument and a magnetometer. Since Venus Express reused the spacecraft bus of Mars Express, which did not carry a magnetometer, no magnetic cleanliness program was implemented to minimize the spacecraft field and no boom was provided. It is fair to say that no essential VEX contribution to fundamental plasma physics was expected after fleets of ISEE and Cluster spacecraft. However during relatively short time in orbit, we have been successfully recovered nearly 100% of the field data with a good accuracy of the quality comparable to magnetic field measurements made onboard magnetically clean spacecraft. And we have produced substantial contributions to many interesting problems of plasma physics. VEX was th! e first to register a new type of subcritical shock, never discussed and never observed before in space plasma. VEX was the first show that K-H vortices are the main contributor to the plasma escape from Venus. Review of these and other exciting VEX results will be given in this presentation.

  7. Mapping Venus: Modeling the Magellan Mission.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Richardson, Doug

    1997-01-01

    Provides details of an activity designed to help students understand the relationship between astronomy and geology. Applies concepts of space research and map-making technology to the construction of a topographic map of a simulated section of Venus. (DDR)

  8. Improved calibration of SOIR/Venus Express spectra.

    PubMed

    Vandaele, Ann Carine; Mahieux, Arnaud; Robert, Séverine; Berkenbosch, Sophie; Clairquin, Roland; Drummond, Rachel; Letocart, Vincent; Neefs, Eddy; Ristic, Bojan; Wilquet, Valérie; Colomer, Frédéric; Belyaev, Denis; Bertaux, Jean-Loup

    2013-09-01

    The SOIR instrument on board the ESA Venus Express mission has been operational since the insertion of the satellite around Venus in April 2006. Since then, it has delivered high quality IR solar occultation spectra of the atmosphere of Venus. The different steps from raw spectra to archived data are described and explained in detail here. These consist of corrections for the dark current and for the non-linearity of the detector; removing bad pixels, as well as deriving noise. The spectral calibration procedure is described, along with all ancillary data necessary for the understanding and interpretation of the SOIR data. These include the full characterization of the AOTF filter, one of the major elements of the instrument. All these data can be found in the ESA PSA archive. PMID:24103989

  9. VENUS EXPRESS STUDIES PERTAINING TO THE LOSS OF THE VENUS ATMOSPHERE BY ITS INTERACTION WITH THE SOLAR WIND

    E-print Network

    California at Berkeley, University of

    VENUS EXPRESS STUDIES PERTAINING TO THE LOSS OF THE VENUS ATMOSPHERE BY ITS INTERACTION planets such as Venus and Mars. We use Venus Express measurements to show that a magnetic barrier the Venus Express magnetometer. Comparisons with models show that the location of the bow shock

  10. A conceptual venus rover mission using advanced radioisotope power system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Evans, Michael; Shirley, James H.; Abelson, Robert Dean

    2006-01-01

    The primary goal of this study is to examine the feasibility of using the novel Advanced RPS-driven Stirling thermoacoustic system to enable extended science operations in the extremely hostile surface environment of Venus. The mission concept entails landing a rover onto the Venus surface, conducting science measurements in different areas on the surface, and returning the science data to Earth. The study focused on developing a rover design to satisfy the science goals with the capability to operate for 60 days. This mission life influences several design parameters, including Earth elevation angle and the maximum communications range to Earth.

  11. Venus Express set for launch to the cryptic planet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-10-01

    On Wednesday, 26 October 2005, the sky over the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, will be illuminated by the blast from a Soyuz-Fregat rocket carrying this precious spacecraft aloft. The celestial motion of the planets in our Solar System has given Venus Express the window to travel to Venus on the best route. In fact, every nineteen months Venus reaches the point where a voyage from Earth is the most fuel-efficient. To take advantage of this opportunity, ESA has opted to launch Venus Express within the next ‘launch window’, opening on 26 October this year and closing about one month later, on 24 November. Again, due to the relative motion of Earth and Venus, plus Earth’s daily rotation, there is only one short period per day when it is possible to launch, lasting only a few seconds. The first launch opportunity is on 26 October at 06:43 Central European Summer Time (CEST) (10:43 in Baikonur). Venus Express will take only 163 days, a little more than five months, to reach Venus. Then, in April 2006, the adventure of exploration will begin with Venus finally welcoming a spacecraft, a fully European one, more than ten years after humankind paid the last visit. The journey starts at launch One of the most reliable launchers in the world, the Soyuz-Fregat rocket, will set Venus Express on course for its target. Soyuz, procured by the European/Russian Starsem company, consists of three main stages with an additional upper stage, Fregat, atop. Venus Express is attached to this upper stage. The injection of Venus Express into the interplanetary trajectory which will bring it to Venus consists of three phases. In the first nine minutes after launch, Soyuz will perform the first phase, that is an almost vertical ascent trajectory, in which it is boosted to about 190 kilometres altitude by its three stages, separating in sequence. In the second phase, the Fregat-Venus Express ‘block’, now free from the Soyuz, is injected into a circular parking orbit around Earth heading east. This injection is done by the first burn of the Fregat engine, due to take place at 06:52 CEST (04:52 GMT). At 08:03 CEST, about one hour and twenty minutes after lift-off and after an almost full circle around Earth, the third phase starts. While flying over Africa, Fregat will ignite for a second time to escape Earth orbit and head into the hyperbolic trajectory that will bring the spacecraft to Venus. After this burn, Fregat will gently release Venus Express, by firing a separation mechanism. With this last step, the launcher will have concluded its task. Plenty of ground activities for a successful trip Once separated from Fregat at 08:21 CEST, Venus Express will be awoken from its dormant status by a series of automatic on-board commands, such as the activation of its propulsion and thermal control systems, the deployment of solar arrays and manoeuvres to ‘orient’ itself in space. From this moment the spacecraft comes under the control of ESA’s European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) for the full duration of the mission. The flight control team co-ordinate and manage a network of ESA ground stations and antennas around the globe, to regularly communicate with the spacecraft. The New Norcia station in Australia and the Kourou station in French Guiana will in turn communicate with Venus Express in the initial phase of the mission. The first opportunity to receive a signal and confirm that the spacecraft is in good health will be the privilege of the New Norcia station about two hours after launch. In this early phase of the mission, once ESOC has taken full control of the satellite, the spacecraft will be fully activated. Operations will also include two burns of the Venus Express thrusters, to correct any possible error in the trajectory after separation from Fregat. On 28 October, the newly inaugurated Cebreros station in Spain, with its 35-metre antenna, will start to take an active part in ground network operations to relay information between ESOC and the spacecraft. During the cruise phase and once the spacecraft has arrived at Venus,

  12. Atmospheric Electricity Measurements on the Proposed European Venus Explorer Mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    K. L. Aplin; E. Chassefiere; C. Ferencz; J. J. Lopez-Moreno; A. Skalsky; S. Svertilov; C. Wilson

    2007-01-01

    The European Venus Explorer (EVE) mission has been proposed to the European Space Agency as part of their Cosmic Vision programme. It comprises an orbiter, balloon and descent probe to provide detailed measurements of the atmosphere's physical and chemical properties. The proposed combination of in situ measurements, with an orbiter for remote sensing, will constrain cloud microphysics and contribute to

  13. A Conceptual Venus Rover Mission Using Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Michael Evans; James H. Shirley; Robert Dean Abelson

    2006-01-01

    This concept study demonstrates that a long lived Venus rover mission could be enabled by a novel application of advanced RPS technology. General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) modules would be employed to drive an advanced thermoacoustic Stirling engine, pulse tube cooler and linear alternator that provides electric power and cooling for the rover. The Thermoacoustic Stirling Heat Engine (TASHE) is

  14. Venus Cloud Properties from Venus Express VIRTIS Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barstow, Joanna; Taylor, F. W.; Tsang, C. C. C.; Wilson, C. F.; Irwin, P. G. J.; Drossart, P.; Piccioni, G.

    2010-10-01

    Near-infrared spectra from the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) on Venus Express have been used to investigate the vertical structure and global distribution of cloud properties on Venus. The spectral range covered by VIRTIS is sensitive on the nightside to absorption by the lower and middle cloud layers, which are back-lit by radiation from the lower atmosphere and surface. The cloud model used to interpret the spectra is based on previous work by Pollack (1993) and others, and assumes a composition for the cloud particles of sulfuric acid and water, with acid concentration as a free parameter to be determined. Other retrieved parameters are the average size of the particles and the altitude of the cloud base in the model. The sensitivity to these variables across the measured spectral range (1.5 to 2.6 µm) is investigated, and radiances at suitable pairs of wavelengths are used in model branch plots to recover each variable independently. Spatial variation of sulfuric acid concentration in the cloud particles has been estimated for the first time. This is then used in the determination of other cloud properties and gaseous abundances. Key findings include increased acid concentration and decreased cloud base altitude in regions of optically thick cloud, a peak in cloud base altitude at -50°, and an increased average particle size near the pole. These results are being used to develop better models of the structure and variability of the clouds, which are needed to understand the chemistry, meteorology and radiative energy balance on Venus. This research is supported by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (UK) the Centre Nationale d'Etudes Spatiales (France), the Agenzia Spaziale Italiana and ESA.

  15. ESA to present the latest Venus Express results to the media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-11-01

    The launch of Venus Express back in November 2005 represented a major milestone in the exploration of Venus — a planet unvisited by any dedicated spacecraft since the early 1990s. One of the fundamental questions being addressed by the Venus Express mission is why a world so similar to Earth in mass and size has evolved so differently, to become the noxious and inhospitable planet it is today. Since it started its scientific observations in July 2006, Venus Express has been making the most detailed study of the planet’s thick and complex atmosphere to date. The latest findings not only highlight the features that make Venus unique in the solar system but also provide fresh clues as to how the planet is — despite everything — a more Earth-like planetary neighbour than one could have imagined. The results will appear in a special section of the 29 November issue of the journal Nature containing nine individual papers devoted to Venus Express science activities. Media organisations interested in attending the press conference are invited to register via the form attached below. Media that cannot attend will have the opportunity to follow the press conference via the following phone line: +33 1 58 99 57 42 (listening-mode only).The results presented at the press conference are embargoed until 28 November 19:00 CET. For more information ESA Media Relations Office Tel: +33 1 5369 7299 Fax: +33 1 5369 7690 Media event programme ‘Venus: a more Earth-like planetary neighbour’ Latest results from Venus Express 28 November 2007, 15:00, room 137 ESA Headquarters, 8-10 rue Mario-Nikis, Paris 15:00 Introduction, by Håkan Svedhem, ESA Venus Express Project Scientist 15:07 Venus: What we knew before, by Fred Taylor, Venus Express Interdisciplinary Scientist 15:15 Temperatures in the atmosphere of Venus, by Jean-Loup Bertaux, SPICAV Principal Investigator 15:25 The dynamic atmosphere of Venus, by Giuseppe Piccioni, VIRTIS Principal Investigator 15:40 Venus’s atmosphere and the solar wind, by Stas Barabash, ASPERA Principal Investigator 15:50 Climate and evolution, by David Grinspoon, Venus Express Interdisciplinary Scientist 16:00 Conclusion, by Dmitri Titov, Venus Express Science Coordinator and VMC scientist 16:05 Questions and Answers 16:25 Individual interviews 17:30 End of event

  16. A Conceptual Venus Rover Mission Using Advanced Radioisotope Power Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Michael; Shirley, James H.; Abelson, Robert Dean

    2006-01-01

    This concept study demonstrates that a long lived Venus rover mission could be enabled by a novel application of advanced RPS technology. General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) modules would be employed to drive an advanced thermoacoustic Stirling engine, pulse tube cooler and linear alternator that provides electric power and cooling for the rover. The Thermoacoustic Stirling Heat Engine (TASHE) is a system for converting high-temperature heat into acoustic power which then drives linear alternators and a pulse tube cooler to provide both electric power and coolin6g for the rover. A small design team examined this mission concept focusing on the feasibility of using the TASHE system in this hostile environment. A rover design is described that would provide a mobile platform for science measurements on the Venus surface for 60 days, with the potential of operating well beyond that. A suite of science instruments is described that collects data on atmospheric and surface composition, surface stratigraphy, and subsurface structure. An Earth-Venus-Venus trajectory would be used to deliver the rover to a low entry angle allowing an inflated ballute to provide a low deceleration and low heat descent to the surface. All rover systems would be housed in a pressure vessel in vacuum with the internal temperature maintained by the TASHE at under 50 °C.

  17. European Venus Explorer: An in-situ mission to Venus using a balloon platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chassefière, E.; Korablev, O.; Imamura, T.; Baines, K. H.; Wilson, C. F.; Titov, D. V.; Aplin, K. L.; Balint, T.; Blamont, J. E.; Cochrane, C. G.; Ferencz, Cs.; Ferri, F.; Gerasimov, M.; Leitner, J. J.; Lopez-Moreno, J.; Marty, B.; Martynov, M.; Pogrebenko, S. V.; Rodin, A.; Whiteway, J. A.; Zasova, L. V.; the EVE Team

    2009-07-01

    Planetary balloons have a long history already. A small super-pressure balloon was flown in the atmosphere of Venus in the eighties by the Russian-French VEGA mission. For this mission, CNES developed and fully tested a 9 m diameter super-pressure balloon, but finally replaced it by a smaller one due to mass constraints (when it was decided to send Vega to Halley's Comet). Furthermore, several kinds of balloons have been proposed for planetary exploration [Blamont, J., in: Maran, S.P. (Ed.), The Astronomy and Astrophysics Encyclopedia. Cambridge University Press, p. 494, 1991]. A Mars balloon has been studied for the Mars-94 Russian-French mission, which was finally cancelled. Mars and Venus balloons have also been studied and ground tested at JPL, and a low atmosphere Venus balloon is presently under development at JAXA (the Japanese Space Agency). Balloons have been identified as a key element in an ongoing Flagship class mission study at NASA, with an assumed launch date between 2020 and 2025. Recently, it was proposed by a group of scientists, under European leadership, to use a balloon to characterize - by in-situ measurements - the evolution, composition and dynamics of the Venus atmosphere. This balloon is part of a mission called EVE (European Venus Explorer), which has been proposed in response to the ESA AO for the first slice of the Cosmic Vision program by a wide international consortium including Europe, Russia, Japan and USA. The EVE architecture consists of one balloon platform floating at an altitude of 50-60 km, one short lived probe provided by Russia, and an orbiter with a polar orbit to relay data from the balloon and probe, and to perform remote sensing science observations. The balloon type preferred for scientific goals is one, which would oscillate in altitude through the cloud deck. To achieve this flight profile, the balloon envelope would contain a phase change fluid. While this proposal was not selected for the first slice of Cosmic Vision missions, it was ranked first among the remaining concepts within the field of solar system science.

  18. First results of an Investigation of Sulfur Dioxide in the Ultraviolet from Pioneer Venus through Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGouldrick, Kevin; Molaverdikhani, K.; Esposito, L. W.; Pankratz, C. K.

    2010-10-01

    The Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics is carrying on a project to restore and preserve data products from several past missions for archival and use by the scientific community. This project includes the restoration of data from Mariner 6/7, Pioneer Venus, Voyager 1/2, and Galileo. Here, we present initial results of this project that involve Pioneer Venus Orbiter Ultraviolet Spectrometer (PVO UVS) data. Using the Discrete Ordinate Method for Radiative Transfer (DISORT), we generate a suite of models for the three free parameters in the upper atmosphere of Venus in which we are interested: sulfur dioxide abundance at 40mb, scale height of sulfur dioxide, and the typical radius of the upper haze particles (assumed to be composed of 84.5% sulfuric acid). We calculate best fits to our radiative transfer model results for multi-spectral images taken with PVO UVS, as well as the 'visible' channel (includes wavelengths from 290nm to about 1000nm) of the mapping mode of the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS-M-Vis) on the Venus Express spacecraft, currently orbiting Venus. This work is funded though the NASA Planetary Mission Data Analysis Program, NNH08ZDA001N.

  19. Venus sample return missions—a range of science, a range of costs

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Ted Sweetser; Craig Peterson; Erik Nilsen; Bob Gershman

    2003-01-01

    Venus sample return missions have been studied occasionally for the last 40 years, but only recently has technology advanced to the point where this kind of mission has been realistic. At the same time, however, cost constraints have become more important. NASA recently has been studying a set of Venus sample return missions which span a range of scientific goals

  20. Astrod I: Mission Concept and Venus Flybies

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Guangyu Li; Wei-Tou Ni; Jun Yan; Da-Zhi Yao; Zhen-Guo Ma; Sachie Siomi; Chien-Jen Tang; Tianyi Huang; Chongming Xu; Xue-Jun Wu

    2003-01-01

    ASTROD-I is the first step of ASTROD (Astrodynamical Space Test of Relativity using Optical Devices). This mission concept has one spacecraft carrying a payload of a telescope five lasers and a clock together with ground stations (ODSN: Optical Deep Space Network) to test the optical scheme and yet give important scientific results. These scientific results include a better measurement of

  1. ASTROD I: Mission concept and Venus flybys

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Wei-Tou Ni; Yun Bao; Hansjörg Dittus; Tianyi Huang; Claus Lämmerzahl; Guangyu Li; Jun Luo; Zhen-Guo Ma; Jean François Mangin; Yu-Xin Nie; Achim Peters; Albrecht Rüdiger; Étienne Samain; Stephan Schiller; Sachie Shiomi; Timothy Sumner; Chien-Jen Tang; Jinhe Tao; Pierre Touboul; Haitao Wang; Andreas Wicht; Xue-Jun Wu; Yaoheng Xiong; Chongming Xu; Jun Yan; Da-Zhi Yao; Hsien-Chi Yeh; Shu-Lian Zhang; Yuan-Zhong Zhang; Ze-Bing Zhou

    2006-01-01

    ASTROD I is the first step of ASTROD (Astrodynamical Space Test of Relativity using Optical Devices). This mission concept has one spacecraft carrying a payload of a telescope, five lasers, and a clock together with ground stations (ODSN: Optical Deep Space Network) to test the optical scheme of interferometric and pulse ranging and yet give important scientific results. These scientific

  2. Venera-D: Russian mission for complex investigation of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korablev, O.; Zasova, L.; Perminov, V.; Ekonomov, A.; Basilevsky, A.; Gerasimov, M.; Linkin, V.; Rodin, A.; Skalsky, A.

    Russian Federal Space program for 2006-2015 includes a mission "Venera-D" for complex investigation of Venus. It is planned to be launched around 2016, by rocket Soyuz-2. According to preliminary investigation in Babakin Center mass of 1900 kg may be delivered to Venus. This mass may include orbiter, balloon(s), lander(s) with long living station on the surface of Venus. Scientific goals: investigation of structure, composition and dynamics of the atmosphere, structure and chemical composition of the clouds and nature of the hazes, investigation of the composition and properties of the surface, search for the volcanic activity, interaction between atmosphere and the surface, search for the electric and acoustic activity in the atmosphere, search for seismic activity, investigations of ionosphere and magnetosphere. A conception of the mission is under development now: new elements, like balloons, flying at different levels in the atmosphere may be down to 10 km altitude with landing and working on the surface, and descend module with long living station on the surface are considered. With existing electronics working at around 300C and corresponding insulation the life of station on the surface may be provided for a month We acknowledge IKI RAS for financial support, grant "Perspectiva"

  3. An Atmospheric Variability Model for Venus Aerobraking Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tolson, Robert T.; Prince, Jill L. H.; Konopliv, Alexander A.

    2013-01-01

    Aerobraking has proven to be an enabling technology for planetary missions to Mars and has been proposed to enable low cost missions to Venus. Aerobraking saves a significant amount of propulsion fuel mass by exploiting atmospheric drag to reduce the eccentricity of the initial orbit. The solar arrays have been used as the primary drag surface and only minor modifications have been made in the vehicle design to accommodate the relatively modest aerothermal loads. However, if atmospheric density is highly variable from orbit to orbit, the mission must either accept higher aerothermal risk, a slower pace for aerobraking, or a tighter corridor likely with increased propulsive cost. Hence, knowledge of atmospheric variability is of great interest for the design of aerobraking missions. The first planetary aerobraking was at Venus during the Magellan mission. After the primary Magellan science mission was completed, aerobraking was used to provide a more circular orbit to enhance gravity field recovery. Magellan aerobraking took place between local solar times of 1100 and 1800 hrs, and it was found that the Venusian atmospheric density during the aerobraking phase had less than 10% 1 sigma orbit to orbit variability. On the other hand, at some latitudes and seasons, Martian variability can be as high as 40% 1 sigmaFrom both the MGN and PVO mission it was known that the atmosphere, above aerobraking altitudes, showed greater variability at night, but this variability was never quantified in a systematic manner. This paper proposes a model for atmospheric variability that can be used for aerobraking mission design until more complete data sets become available.

  4. IN-SITU AERIAL EXPLORATION OF VENUS BY BALLOON -SCIENCE OBJECTIVES AND MISSION ARCHITECTURE. K.H. Baines1

    E-print Network

    Treiman, Allan H.

    IN-SITU AERIAL EXPLORATION OF VENUS BY BALLOON - SCIENCE OBJECTIVES AND MISSION ARCHITECTURE. K the trailblazing flights of the 1985 twin Soviet VEGA balloons, missions to fly in the skies of Venus have been of the recently-completed Venus Flagship Mission study. Such missions will answer fundamental science issues

  5. Monday, March 23, 2009 SPECIAL SESSION: VENUS ATMOSPHERE

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    Monday, March 23, 2009 SPECIAL SESSION: VENUS ATMOSPHERE: VENUS EXPRESS AND FUTURE MISSIONS 2:30 p Y. J. Daniels J. T. M. Barabash S. Zhang T. L. Venus Express: Atmospheric Loss and Electrodynamics [#1408] The solar wind interaction with Venus is eroding the Venus atmosphere in several different ways

  6. Venus O2 nightglow observations with VIRTIS/Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliorini, A.; Piccioni, G.; Gérard, J. C.; Slanger, T.; Politi, R.; Snels, M.; Nuccilli, F.; Drossart, P.

    2012-09-01

    The oxygen nightglow emissions in the visible spectral range are known since the early observations with the Venera spacecrafts. Recent observations with the VIRTIS instrument on board Venus-Express allowed to re-detect the Herzberg II system of O2. In particular, the (0-7), (0-8), (0-9), (0-10), and (0-11) bands of the Herzberg II system have been observed in the limb data. These bands peak at about 95 km, with a mean total integrated intensity of about 200 kR. Moreover, 3 bands of the Chamberlain system, centred at 0.56 ?m, 0.605 ?m, and 0.657 ?m were also detected. For the first time, the O2 nightglow emissions were investigated simultaneously in the visible and in the IR spectral range, reporting a good agreement of the peak altitude values for the Herzberg II and the O2(a1?g-X3?- g) band. Finally a 1-D atmospheric model was applied in order to interpret our results. The model, starting from realistic O and CO2 vertical distribution, allows to well reproduce the observed profiles for the O2 systems both in the visible and IR spectral ranges.

  7. MESSENGER and Venus Express Observations of the Solar Wind Interaction with Venus: A Dual Spacecraft Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slavin, James A.; Acuna, M. H.; Anderson, B. J.; Barabash, S.; Benna, M.; Boardsen, S. A.; Fraenz, M.; Gloeckler, G.; Gold, R. E.; Ho, G. C.; Korth, H.; Krimigis, S. M.; McNutt, R. L., Jr.; Raines, J. M.; Sarantos, M.; Solomon, S. C.; Zhang, T.; Zurbuchen, T. H.

    2007-01-01

    At 23:08 UT on 5 June 2007 the MESSENGER spacecraft reached its closest approach altitude (338 krn) during its second flyby of Venus en route to its 201 1 orbit insertion at Mercury. Whereas no measurements were collected during MESSENGER'S first Venus flyby in October 2006, the Magnetometer (MAG) and the Energetic Particle and Plasma Spectrometer (EPPS) operated successfully throughout this second encounter. Venus provides the solar system's best example to date of a solar wind - ionosphere planetary interaction. Pioneer Venus Orbiter measurements have shown that this interaction affects the upper atmosphere and ionosphere down to altitudes of - 150 km. Here we present an initial overview of the MESSENGER observations during the - 4 hrs that the spacecraft spent within 10 planet radii of Venus and, together with Venus Express measurements, examine the influence of solar wind plasma and interplanetary magnetic field conditions on the solar wind interaction at solar minimum.

  8. Dynamics of Venus' southern polar vortex from over two years of VIRTIS/Venus Express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luz, D.; Berry, D. L.; Peralta, J.; Piccioni, G.

    2011-10-01

    polar region of Venus, using measurements from the VIRTIS instrument from the Venus Express Mission, revealed it to be in constant dynamic change, with the southern polar vortex displaced from the rotational geometry of the planet [1]. Here, we place these results in the context of measurements taken over a two year period. We examine the dynamics of the southern polar region based on measurements of winds at the 45 and 65 km levels, detected from cloud motion monitoring by the VIRTIS instrument. The wind velocity components were determined by an automatic cloud-tracking technique based on evaluating the similarity between pairs of images of cloud structures at a specific atmospheric altitude, separated by a short time interval. The images were obtained at infrared wavelengths of 1.74 and 2.3 ?m, for the night side, and 3.9 and 5.0 ?m, for both the day and night sides. These wavelengths are sensitive to radiation originating from levels close to the base and to the top of the cloud deck, respectively. The technique assumes that the clouds are passive tracers of the atmospheric mass flow, and that the cloud structure does not change substantially between the two images. Our objectives have been 1) to provide horizontal maps of direct wind measurements at cloud tops and in the lower cloud level with a high spatial resolution; 2) to characterize the southern polar vortex as to its motion, rotation rate and dynamical stability; 3) to constrain the contribution of the circumpolar circulation to the angular momentum budget; and 4) to provide valuable information for Venus climate modelling, for the planning of future probe or balloon missions, and to examine the Venus polar vortex in the context of other planetary vortices. The circulation in the southern polar region is dominated by the zonal flow, which is much stronger than the meridional circulation. The latitudinal profiles show a relatively smooth variation and the vertical shear between the 45-km and 65-km levels is on the order of 5-10 ms-1. The horizontal structure of the zonal and meridional wind components indicate that wavenumber-2 thermal tides are likely to be present.

  9. MESSENGER and Venus Express Observations of the Solar Wind Interaction with Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slavin, James A.; Acuna, Mario H.; Anderson, Brian J.; Barabash, Stas; Benna, Mehdi; Boardsen, Scott A.; Fraenz, Markus; Gloeckler, George; Gold, Robert E.; Ho,George C.; Korth, Haje; Krimigis, Stamatios M.; McNutt, Ralph L., Jr.; Raines, Jim M.; Sarantos, Menelaos; Solomon, Sean C.; Zhang, Tielong; Zurbuchen, Thomas H.

    2009-01-01

    At 23:08 UTC on 5 June 2007 the MESSENGER spacecraft reached its closest approach altitude of 338 kin during its final flyby of Venus en route to its 2011 orbit insertion at Mercury. The availability of the simultaneous Venus Express solar wind and interplanetary magnetic field measurements provides a rare opportunity to examine the influence of upstream conditions on this planet's solar wind interaction. We present MESSENGER observations of new features of the Venus - solar wind interaction including hot flow anomalies upstream of the bow shock, a flux rope in the near-tail and a two-point determination of the timescale for magnetic flux transport through this induced magnetosphere. Citation: Stavin, J. A., et al. (2009), MESSENGER and Venus Express observations of the solar wind interaction with Venus,

  10. Temporal variations of UV reflectivity of Venus observed by the Venus Monitoring Camera onboard Venus Express.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Yeon Joo; Imamura, Takeshi; Schroder, Stefan

    The UV channel of the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) onboard Venus Express (VEX) detects dark and bright features at the cloud top level all over the globe. This UV contrast is affected by the abundance of an unknown UV absorber, which is located within the upper cloud layer, and the upper haze above the cloud tops (Pollack et al.,1979; Esposito, 1980). The unknown UV absorber is a major sink of solar energy in the Venus middle atmosphere (Crisp, 1986). The upper haze and clouds take part in sulfur photochemical processes in the Venus mesosphere (Mills et al., 2007). At the cloud top altitude the zonal wind speed is highest, resulting in changes in cloud morphology in a few days. Therefore, the features shown in the UV images are diagnostic for atmospheric dynamics and chemistry. By analyzing VMC UV images, we found there is a clear decreasing trend of the global mean albedo by 20-30% over 2000 orbits (=2000 Earth days) of VEX operation. This decrease is driven by changes at high latitudes. This implies that the typical latitudinal albedo distribution, bright polar hood and dark equatorial region, varies over time. The latitudinal difference in albedo changes from a clear brightness gradient from pole to equator to an almost identical brightness in both regions. Interestingly, this temporal variation is similar to that of the SO2 abundance above the cloud tops, observed in the same period (Marcq et al., 2013). This suggests a reduction of SO2 over the equator decreases the amount of upper haze at high latitudes, as less sulfur is supplied by the meridional circulation. We investigate the phase angle dependence of the latitudinal albedo difference, which reveals that the vertical distribution of the UV absorbers and the upper haze varies in time as well. Our results show large scale variations in Venusian atmospheric dynamics near the cloud tops, represented by temporal changes in the amount of upper haze at high latitudes and/or in the vertical distribution of the unknown UV absorber.

  11. Venus Express en route to probe the planet's hidden mysteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-11-01

    Venus Express will eventually manoeuvre itself into orbit around Venus in order to perform a detailed study of the structure, chemistry and dynamics of the planet's atmosphere, which is characterised by extremely high temperatures, very high atmospheric pressure, a huge greenhouse effect and as-yet inexplicable "super-rotation" which means that it speeds around the planet in just four days. The European spacecraft will also be the first orbiter to probe the planet's surface while exploiting the "visibility windows" recently discovered in the infrared waveband. The 1240 kg mass spacecraft was developed for ESA by a European industrial team led by EADS Astrium with 25 main contractors spread across 14 countries. It lifted off onboard a Soyuz-Fregat rocket, the launch service being provided by Starsem. The lift-off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakstan this morning took place at 09:33 hours local time (04:33 Central European Time). Initial Fregat upper-stage ignition took place 9 minutes into the flight, manoeuvring the spacecraft into a low-earth parking orbit. A second firing, 1 hour 22 minutes later, boosted the spacecraft to pursue its interplanetary trajectory. Contact with Venus Express was established by ESA's European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) at Darmstadt, Germany approximately two hours after lift-off. The spacecraft has correctly oriented itself in relation to the sun and has deployed its solar arrays. All onboard systems are operating perfectly and the orbiter is communicating with the Earth via its low-gain antenna. In three days' time, it will establish communications using its high-gain antenna. Full speed ahead for Venus Venus Express is currently distancing itself from the Earth full speed, heading on its five-month 350 million kilometre journey inside our solar system. After check-outs to ensure that its onboard equipment and instrument payload are in proper working order, the spacecraft will be mothballed, with contact with the Earth being reduced to once daily. If needed, trajectory correction manoeuvres can go ahead at the half-way stage in January. When making its closest approach, Venus Express will face far tougher conditions than those encountered by Mars Express on nearing the Red Planet. For while Venus's size is indeed similar to that of the Earth, its mass is 7.6 times that of Mars, with gravitational attraction to match. To resist this greater gravitational pull, the spacecraft will have to ignite its main engine for 53 minutes in order to achieve 1.3 km/second deceleration and place itself into a highly elliptical orbit around the planet. Most of its 570 kg of propellant will be used for this manoeuvre. A second engine firing will be necessary in order to reach final operational orbit: a polar elliptical orbit with 12-hour crossings. This will enable the probe to make approaches to within 250 km of the planet's surface and withdraw to distances of up to 66 000 km, so as to carry out close-up observations and also get an overall perspective. Exploring other planets to better understand planet Earth "The launch of Venus Express is a further illustration of Europe's determination to study the various bodies in our solar system", stressed Professor David Southwood, the Director of ESA's science programmes. "We started in 2003 with the launch of Mars Express to the Red Planet and Smart-1 to the Moon and both these missions have amply exceeded our expectations. Venus Express marks a further step forward, with a view to eventually rounding off our initial overview of our immediate planetary neighbours with the BepiColombo mission to Mercury to be launched in 2013." "With Venus Express, we fully intend to demonstrate yet again that studying the planets is of vital importance for life here on Earth", said Jean Jacques Dordain, ESA Director General. "To understand climate change on Earth and all the contributing factors, we cannot make do with solely observing our own planet. We need to decipher the mechanics of the planetary atmosphere in

  12. Aerocapture Performance Analysis of A Venus Exploration Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Starr, Brett R.; Westhelle, Carlos H.

    2005-01-01

    A performance analysis of a Discovery Class Venus Exploration Mission in which aerocapture is used to capture a spacecraft into a 300km polar orbit for a two year science mission has been conducted to quantify its performance. A preliminary performance assessment determined that a high heritage 70 sphere-cone rigid aeroshell with a 0.25 lift to drag ratio has adequate control authority to provide an entry flight path angle corridor large enough for the mission s aerocapture maneuver. A 114 kilograms per square meter ballistic coefficient reference vehicle was developed from the science requirements and the preliminary assessment s heating indicators and deceleration loads. Performance analyses were conducted for the reference vehicle and for sensitivity studies on vehicle ballistic coefficient and maximum bank rate. The performance analyses used a high fidelity flight simulation within a Monte Carlo executive to define the aerocapture heating environment and deceleration loads and to determine mission success statistics. The simulation utilized the Program to Optimize Simulated Trajectories (POST) that was modified to include Venus specific atmospheric and planet models, aerodynamic characteristics, and interplanetary trajectory models. In addition to Venus specific models, an autonomous guidance system, HYPAS, and a pseudo flight controller were incorporated in the simulation. The Monte Carlo analyses incorporated a reference set of approach trajectory delivery errors, aerodynamic uncertainties, and atmospheric density variations. The reference performance analysis determined the reference vehicle achieves 100% successful capture and has a 99.87% probability of attaining the science orbit with a 90 meters per second delta V budget for post aerocapture orbital adjustments. A ballistic coefficient trade study conducted with reference uncertainties determined that the 0.25 L/D vehicle can achieve 100% successful capture with a ballistic coefficient of 228 kilograms per square meter and that the increased ballistic coefficient increases post aerocapture V budget to 134 meters per second for a 99.87% probability of attaining the science orbit. A trade study on vehicle bank rate determined that the 0.25 L/D vehicle can achieve 100% successful capture when the maximum bank rate is decreased from 30 deg/s to 20 deg/s. The decreased bank rate increases post aerocapture delta V budget to 102 meters per second for a 99.87% probability of attaining the science orbit.

  13. Mariner Venus-Mercury 1973 project. Volume 2: Extended mission-Mercury 2 and 3 encounters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1975-01-01

    The Mariner Venus/Mercury 1973 mission operations Extended Mission is described. The activities are summarized from shortly after Mercury I through the end of mission. The operational activities are reported by Mission Operations Systems functions providing a brief summary from each discipline. Based on these experiences recommendations for future projects are made.

  14. MESSENGER and Venus Express observations of the solar wind interaction with Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slavin, James A.; Acuña, Mario H.; Anderson, Brian J.; Barabash, Stas; Benna, Mehdi; Boardsen, Scott A.; Fraenz, Markus; Gloeckler, George; Gold, Robert E.; Ho, George C.; Korth, Haje; Krimigis, Stamatios M.; McNutt, Ralph L.; Raines, Jim M.; Sarantos, Menelaos; Solomon, Sean C.; Zhang, Tielong; Zurbuchen, Thomas H.

    2009-05-01

    At 23:08 UTC on 5 June 2007 the MESSENGER spacecraft reached its closest approach altitude of 338 km during its final flyby of Venus en route to its 2011 orbit insertion at Mercury. The availability of the simultaneous Venus Express solar wind and interplanetary magnetic field measurements provides a rare opportunity to examine the influence of upstream conditions on this planet's solar wind interaction. We present MESSENGER observations of new features of the Venus - solar wind interaction including hot flow anomalies upstream of the bow shock, a flux rope in the near-tail and a two-point determination of the timescale for magnetic flux transport through this induced magnetosphere.

  15. Interplanetary mission design handbook. Volume 1, part 1: Earth to Venus ballistic mission opportunities, 1991-2005

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sergeyevsky, A. B.; Yin, N. H.

    1983-01-01

    Graphical data necessary for the preliminary design of ballistic missions to Venus is presented. Contours of launch energy requirements, as well as many other launch and arrival parameters, are presented in launch data/arrival date space for all launch opportunities from 1991 through 2005. An extensive text is included which explains mission design methods, from launch window development to Venus probe and orbiter arrival design, utilizing the graphical data in this volume as well as numerous equations relating various parameters.

  16. The Scientific Exploration of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Fredric W.

    2014-12-01

    Part I. Views of Venus, from the Beginning to the Present Day: 1. The dawn of Venus exploration; 2. Mariner and Venera; 3. Pioneer Venus and Vega: orbiters, balloons and multi-probes; 4. Images of the surface; 5. The forgotten world; 6. Earth-based astronomy delivers a breakthrough; 7. Can't stop now; 8. Europe and Japan join in: Venus Express and Akatsuki; Part II. The Motivation to Continue the Quest: 9. Origin and evolution: the solid planet; 10. Atmosphere and ocean; 11. A volcanic world; 12. The mysterious clouds; 13. Superwinds and polar vortices; 14. The climate on Venus, past, present and future; 15. Could there be life on Venus?; Part III. Plans and Visions for the Future: 16. Solar system exploration; 17. Coming soon to a planet near you: planned Venus missions; 18. Towards the horizon: advanced technology; 19. Beyond the horizon: human expeditions; Epilogue; Appendix A. Chronology of space missions to Venus; Appendix B. Data about Venus.

  17. Results of the Venus Express Aerobraking Campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, Hakan; Müller-Wodarg, Ingo

    2014-11-01

    After a very successful mission orbiting Venus for more than 8 years, slowly the fuel is running out and the spacecraft will inevitably one day end up in the hot and acid atmosphere of the planet. Being near the end of the mission and in a position to accept some risk to the spacecraft we decided to take the opportunity to dip down deep into the atmosphere, to around 130 km, in a controlled manner, in order to make detailed in situ investigations of this for remote sensing instruments difficult to access region. The on board accelerometers gave direct measurements of the deceleration which in turn is directly proportional to the local atmospheric density. This provided an excellent way to study both the total density profile throughout the orbital arc in the atmosphere and small scale density variations in the region of the pericentre. The spacecraft behaved perfectly well throughout the whole campaign and provided a wealth of data both on the atmosphere and on the response of the spacecraft to the harsh environment with strong heat loads and some dynamic stress. At the time of the campaign the pericentre was located near the terminator at about 75 degrees Northern latitude. Aerobraking is a very efficient method of reducing the pericentre velocity and thereby reducing the apocentre altitude and the orbital period.The so called "walk-in" phase started at an altitude of 190 km on 17 May and the campaign ended on 11 July, after having reached a lowest altitude of 129.2 km. Subsequently, a series of orbit control manoeuvres lifted up the pericentre to 460 km altitude and the science activities were resumed after a thorough check-out of the spacecraft. We have detected a highly variable atmosphere, both on a day to day basis and within the individual pericentre passes. The duration of each pass was approximately 100 s and the maximum dynamic pressure achieved was more than 0.75 N/m2, probably a record for a spacecraft that continued its operation afterwards. The orbital period was reduced over the duration of the campaign changing from 24 hours to 22 hours 20 minutes.

  18. Climate change on Venus and future spacecraft mission priorities

    Microsoft Academic Search

    M. Bullock; D. Grinspoon

    2002-01-01

    Weathering of surface minerals in the sulfur-rich lower atmosphere of Venus may well have played a significant role in the recent evolution of the planet's climate. SO 2 in the atmosphere is interesting because it is the primary precursor of Venus' bright H 2SO 4 \\/H 2O clouds, it is a greenhouse gas, it is most likely outgassed by volcanoes

  19. Long-term variations of the UV contrast on Venus observed by the Venus Monitoring Camera on board Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Y. J.; Imamura, T.; Schröder, S. E.; Marcq, E.

    2015-06-01

    We analyze the Venus ultraviolet (UV) reflectivity as observed by the Venus Monitoring Camera on board Venus Express over 2000 orbits in the years 2006-2011. We compare several laws for the photometric correction of global images of Venus, and find that the combined law of Lambert and Lommel-Seeliger is most suitable for our study. Our analysis of the corrected images reveals strong fluctuations in the reflectivity contrast between low and high latitude regions of up to 40%, that follow variations of the SO2 abundance above the cloud top. Additionally, the phase angle dependence of the contrast gradually change from weak to strong, which may be related with the vertical distribution of the unknown UV absorber and the overlaying upper haze layer. We suggest that these variations result from a combination of two processes. One is the meridional transport of SO2, which forms sulfuric acid aerosol particles at high latitudes. The other is the presence of vertical winds near the cloud top level, which control the vertical mixing of the unknown UV absorber and the upper haze.

  20. Ballistic mode Mercury orbiter mission opportunity handbook extension. [interplanetary trajectories for Venus swingbys to Mercury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hollenbeck, G. R.; Lewis, P. S.; Rockenbach, P. C.

    1974-01-01

    Interplanetary trajectory characteristics are presented, for Venus swingbys to Mercury, where multiple revolutions about the Sun are permitted. Additional consideration is given to the use of multiple Venus swingbys and/or to midcourse, near perilhelion, propulsive maneuvers to improve the performance of the mission as measured in terms of payload in Mercury orbit. Missions in 1980, 1983, 1985 and 1988 were analyzed with navigation results also developed. An exploratory investigation established the availability of low energy mission opportunities in 1991, 1994, 1996 and 1999.

  1. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The session "Venus" included the following reports:Preliminary Study of Laser-induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) for a Venus Mission; Venus Surface Investigation Using VIRTIS Onboard the ESA/Venus Express Mission; Use of Magellan Images for Venus Landing Safety Assessment; Volatile Element Geochemistry in the Lower Atmosphere of Venus; Resurfacing Styles and Rates on Venus: Assessment of 18 Venusian Quadrangles; Stereo Imaging of Impact Craters in the Beta-Atla-Themis (BAT) Region, Venus; Depths of Extended Crater-related Deposits on Venus ; Potential Pyroclastic Deposit in the Nemesis Tessera (V14) Quadrangle of Venus; Relationship Between Coronae, Regional Plains and Rift Zones on Venus, Preliminary Results; Coronae of Parga Chasma, Venus; The Evolution of Four Volcano/Corona Hybrids on Venus; Calderas on Venus and Earth: Comparison and Models of Formation; Venus Festoon Deposits: Analysis of Characteristics and Modes of Emplacement; Topographic and Structural Analysis of Devana Chasma, Venus: A Propagating Rift System; Anomalous Radial Structures at Irnini Mons, Venus: A Parametric Study of Stresses on a Pressurized Hole; Analysis of Gravity and Topography Signals in Atalanta-Vinmara and Lavinia Planitiae Canali are Lava, Not River, Channels; and Formation of Venusian Channels in a Shield Paint Substrate.

  2. Venus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Paula; Stofan, Ellen

    2004-01-01

    On 8 June 2004 Venus will pass in front of the Sun as seen from the Earth. Many people will watch the small dark dot cross the solar disk, but will they stop to think about Venus as a real place? In this article we discuss what we know about Venus, what it looks like from orbit, what you might see if you were on the surface and future plans for…

  3. Retrieval of Venus' clouds parameters with polarization using SPICAV-IR onboard Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, Loïc; Marcq, Emmanuel; Montmessin, Franck; Fedorova, Anna; Stam, Daphne; Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Korablev, Oleg

    2015-04-01

    Understanding the structure and dynamics of Venus' clouds is essential as they have a strong impact on the radiative balance and atmospheric chemistry of the planet. Polarimetry has greatly contributed to our knwoledge about the properties of the cloud layers located between 48 and ~ 70 km. Hansen and Hovenier (1974), using ground-based observations, found the cloud particles to be ~ 1?m spherical droplets, with a refractive index corresponding to a concentrated sulfuric acid-water solution. Later, Kawabata et al. (1980), using polarimetric data from OCPP onboard Pioneer Venus retrieved the properties of the haze: effective radius of ~ 0.25?m, refractive indices consistent with a sulfuric acid-water solution, variance of the particle size distribution. We introduce here new measurements obtained with the SPICAV-IR spectrometer onboard ESA's Venus Express. Observing Venus in the visible and IR from 650 nm to 1625 nm with a good spatial and temporal converage, SPICAV's sensitivity to the degree of linear polarization gives us an opportunity to put better constraints on haze and cloud particles at Venus cloud top, as well as their spatial and temporal variability. These observations reveal a particular feature called glory, observed by SPICAV-IR and VMC (Markiewicz et al. 2014). Using a radiative transfer code taking into account polarization (de Haan et al. 1987, de Rooij et al. 1984, Stam et al. 1999), we model the cloud layers and the glory allowing us to retrieve the real part of the refractive index, the effective radius and variance of the particle size distribution from the main cloud layer. Our results confirm that the particles are spherical, with a narrow size distribution and with refractive indices that are compatible with H2SO4-H2O solutions (Rossi et al. 2014). Using the large latitudinal coverage of the data, we can also retrieve the variation of the overlying haze layer optical thickness. We find that ?h is increasing with increasing latitude, in agreement with previous measurements from Braak et al. (2002) and Knibbe et al. (1997). References Hansen, J. E. and Hovenier, J. W., 1974, Interpretation of the polarization of Venus., Journal of Atmospheric Sciences, 31. Kawabata et al., 1980, Cloud and haze properties from Pioneer Venus Polarimetry, J. Geophys. Res., 85. Markiewicz, W.J. et al., 2014, Glory on venus cloud tops and the unknown UV absorber, Icarus, 234. de Haan, J. F. et al, 1987, The adding method for multiple scattering calculations of polarized light, Astron. Astrophys., 183. de Rooij, W. A. and van der Stap, C. C. A. H., 1984, Expansion of Mie scattering matrices in generalized spherical functions, Astron. Astrophys., 131 Stam, D. M. et al., 1999, Degree of linear polarization of light emerging from the cloudless atmosphere in the oxygen A band, J. Geophys. Res., 104. Rossi, L. et al., 2014, Preliminary study of Venus cloud layers with polarimetric data from SPICAV/VEx, Planet. Space Sci., In Press. Braak, C. J. et al., 2002, Spatial and temporal variations of Venus haze properties obtained from Pioneer Venus Orbiter polarimetry, J. Geophys. Res. (Planets), 107. Knibbe, W. J. J. et al., 1997,A biwavelength analysis of Pioneer Venus polarization observations, J. Geophys. Res., 102.

  4. An orbital radar mapper of venus in the 1980's: Mission design and analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Asnin, S. K.

    1973-01-01

    The examination of Venus topography, obscured for photographic imaging, is reported in the application of airborne radar mapping systems to an orbiter mission about the planet. Extrapolating the improving capabilities of earth-based radar study of Venus into the 1980's is reported which suggests that only a non-uniform, poorly resolved surface profile will be possible relative to the potential for 100% coverage at 100 meter resolution with an orbital radar. The intent of this paper is: to define mission opportunities favorable for a Venus orbital mapper during the 1980's, to examine orbit design problems associated with mapping radar systems, to establish with flexibility exists for an adaptive mapping strategy, to contribute to the sizing of particular spacecraft systems, and to suggest a reference mission design and demonstrate feasibility.

  5. Navigation Support at JPL for the JAXA Akatsuki (PLANET-C) Venus Orbiter Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ryne, Mark S.; Mottinger, Neil A.; Broschart, Stephen B.; You, Tung-Han; Higa, Earl; Helfrich, Cliff; Berry, David

    2011-01-01

    This paper details the orbit determination activities undertaken at JPL in support of the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency's (JAXA) Akatsuki (a.k.a. Plan-et-C and/or Venus Climate Orbiter) mission. The JPL navigation team's role was to provide independent navigation support as a point of comparison with the JAXA generated orbit determination solutions. Topics covered include a mis-sion and spacecraft overview, dynamic forces modeling, cruise and approach or-bit determination results, and the international teaming arrangement. Significant discussion is dedicated to the events surrounding recovery from the unsuccessful Venus orbit insertion maneuver.

  6. Modeling the response of the induced magnetosphere of Venus to changing IMF direction using MESSENGER and Venus Express observations

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Mehdi Benna; Mario H. Acuña; Brian J. Anderson; Stanislav Barabash; Scott A. Boardsen; George Gloeckler; Robert E. Gold; George C. Ho; Haje Korth; Stamatios M. Krimigis; Ralph L. McNutt; Jim M. Raines; Menelaos Sarantos; James A. Slavin; Sean C. Solomon; Tielong L. Zhang; Thomas H. Zurbuchen

    2009-01-01

    The second MESSENGER flyby of Venus on 5 June 2007 provided a new opportunity to study the response of the induced magnetosphere of the planet to changes in the direction of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF). At the time of the MESSENGER flyby, the European Space Agency's Venus Express spacecraft was located outside the magnetosphere and provided a monitor of

  7. Venus Express Publications Supported by NASA Last update: 05-20-2014

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    1 Venus Express Publications Supported by NASA Last update: 05-20-2014 Compiled by Kevin H. Baines Venus Express funding 2006 Baines, K. H. Atreya, S., Carlson, R. W., Crisp, D., Drossart, P., Formisano, V., Limaye, S. S., Markiewicz, W. J., and Piccioni, G. (2006). To the depths of Venus: Exploring

  8. Global Mapping of Venus' Atmosphere Using Accumulated Projections of Virtis Venus Express Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardesín Moinelo, A.; Piccioni, G.; Migliorini, A.; Drossart, P.

    2008-12-01

    The VIRTIS instrument onboard Venus Express has been using its Mapping channel successfully since the Venus orbit insertion on 11th April 2005. The hyper-spectral images obtained in the near-Infrared and Visible cover a wide spectral range (5um-250nm) with good sampling capabilities, which make them highly useful for the study of morphology, dynamics and composition of the atmosphere and the surface. Single observations performed by VIRTIS typically cover only a fraction of the Venus' disk and thus they provide instantaneous information of local features. We are now investigating a new approach to study the global morphology of Venus' atmosphere by linking the current 3-dimensional VIRTIS measurements (2 spatial + 1 spectral) with their evolution in time, thanks to the good coverage of the instrument, mapping same regions at different times and with different conditions (season, local solar time, etc). We present high quality global distribution maps of radiance over the whole planet, with results showing the different morphology of various layers of the atmosphere, e.g. Oxygen Nightglow emission at 1.27um in the upper mesosphere and deep atmosphere clouds observed at 1.74um. In addition, we can compare different emissions probing the same layer, as in the case of the radiance at 1.74um/2.3um and the Thermal Brightnesses at 3.8um/5um. All these global distribution maps show interesting dependences with latitude and local time (or longitude) giving useful information for the study of the global morphology of Venus' atmosphere. Other products derived by the new system such as time series, coverage maps, radiance variation plots and radiance stability maps can also lead to a more detailed analysis and a better understanding of the global dynamics and morphology of the atmosphere.

  9. Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    This lithograph shows a mosaic of Venus that was composed from Magellan images taken during radar investigations from 1990-1994. This is a false-color image that depicts topography. Images of the Venusian cloud tops and some surface features are also included. The images are accompanied by a brief description and history, some statistical facts, and a list of important dates in the exploration of Venus.

  10. The polar atmosphere of Venus: Radio occultation measurements with Venus Express and Magellan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hinson, D. P.; Tellmann, S.; Paetzold, M.; Haeusler, B.; Bird, M. K.; Tyler, G. L.

    2012-12-01

    The ESA Venus Express (VEx) spacecraft has been conducting radio occultation experiments since 2006. The results reported to date are based on data recorded by 35-m antennas of the ESA Tracking Station Network (e.g., Tellmann et al., J. Geophys. Res., 114, E00B36, 2009). We have recently begun to derive complementary new results through analysis of high-quality "open-loop" data recorded by a 70-m antenna of the NASA Deep Space Network. This experiment sounded the polar atmosphere in both hemispheres at latitudes greater than 75 degrees. As in previous occultation measurements in this region, there is a deep convective layer at altitudes below about 60 km. The convective layer is capped by an abrupt transition to stable stratification, and the overlying free air is modulated by vertically propagating gravity waves. These new results will be compared with Magellan radio occultation measurements acquired at comparable latitudes in the early 1990s and with the VEx results reported by Tellmann et al. (2009). Our analysis also illustrates some of the challenges that can arise in radio occultation measurements at Venus. For example, the sharp temperature minimum at the tropopause creates a thin layer that eludes radio occultation sounding owing to its peculiar refractive properties. This research is funded in part by NASA Grant NNX10AE22G of the Venus Express Participating Scientist Program.

  11. Assessment of Guided Aerocapture and Entry for Venus In Situ Missions Using Mechanically Deployed Aerodynamic Decelerator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saikia, S. J.; Saranathan, H.; Longuski, J. M.; Grant, M. J.

    2014-05-01

    The option of a a guided mechanically deployed aerodynamic decelerator (ADEPT) for in situ missions to Venus is evaluated to reduce both the peak deceleration loads to under 10g and and peak heat fluxes to less than 120 W/cm2.

  12. A Wind-powered Rover for a Low-Cost Venus Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benigno, Gina; Hoza, Kathleen; Motiwala, Samira; Landis, Geoffrey A.; Colozza, Anthony J.

    2013-01-01

    Venus, with a surface temperature of 450 C and an atmospheric pressure 90 times higher than that of the Earth, is a difficult target for exploration. However, high-temperature electronics and power systems now being developed make it possible that future missions may be able to operate in the Venus environment. Powering such a rover within the scope of a Discovery class mission will be difficult, but harnessing Venus' surface winds provides a possible way to keep a powered rover small and light. This project scopes out the feasibility of a wind-powered rover for Venus surface missions. Two rover concepts, a land-sailing rover and a wind-turbine-powered rover, were considered. The turbine-powered rover design is selected as being a low-risk and low-cost strategy. Turbine detailed analysis and design shows that the turbine can meet mission requirements across the desired range of wind speeds by utilizing three constant voltage generators at fixed gear ratios.

  13. The electrical performance of Ag Zn batteries for the Venus multi-probe mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    C. Palandati

    1975-01-01

    An evaluation of 5 Ah and 21 Ah Silver-Zinc batteries was made to determine their suitability to meet the energy storage requirements of the bus vehicle, 3 small probes and large probe for the Venus multi-probe mission. The evaluation included a 4 Ah battery for the small probe, a 21 Ah battery for the large probe, one battery of each

  14. Magellan - Early results from the Venus mapping mission

    SciTech Connect

    Saunders, R.S.

    1991-01-01

    Some results obtained with the Magellan Venus Radar Mapper are presented. Mapping was initiated on October 26, 1990 and has completed over 714 orbits of image data, covering 40 percent of the surface of Venus. Mapping began at 330 deg east longitude, mapping from the north pole to about 78 deg south latitude. Included are the regions of Ishtar Terra, Sedna, Guinevere and Lavinia Planitiae, and Lada Terra. Features discernable from the mapping include high and lowland plains, evidence of volcanic activity, and impact craters from 6 km to over 50 km across. Some Magellan scientific discoveries are listed, including evidence of a predominant role of ballistic volcanism, extensive and intensive tectonics, a moderate rate of volcanic and tectonic resurfacing, and a low rate of weathering and wind erosion. Other discoveries concerning techntonics, volcanism, impact cratering, and exogenous resurfacing are also listed. Magellan image coverage is discussed, and a chronology of the development of VOIR and Magellan is provided.

  15. Venus Express observations of atmospheric oxygen escape during the passage of several coronal mass ejections

    E-print Network

    California at Berkeley, University of

    Venus Express observations of atmospheric oxygen escape during the passage of several coronal mass of Venus atmospheric constituents, especially oxygen, by direct antisunward acceleration of planetary ions may have played a key role in Venus' atmosphere evolution, but the significance of their effects

  16. In-Situ Exploration of Venus: Major Science Objectives, Investigations, and Mission Platform Options

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baines, K. H.; Limaye, S. S.; Hall, J. L.; Atreya, S. K.; Bullock, M. A.; Crisp, D.; Grinspoon, D. H.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Russell, C. T.; Webster, C. R.; Zahnle, K. J.

    2013-12-01

    In-situ missions to Venus have been recommended by both the 2011 and 2003 Decadal Studies of the NRC and have been proposed numerous times to NASA's Discovery and New Frontiers programs as well as to ESA's Cosmic Vision program. Such missions would revolutionize our understanding of Venus, as they address key questions of Venus's origin, evolution, and current state via high precision measurements of (1) noble gases and their isotopes, and (2) reactive trace gases and aerosol associated with Venus's active photo- and thermo-chemistry and sulfur cycle, including components potentially responsible for the poorly-understood uv-absorbing haze layer. Fundamental questions, as promoted in recent VEXAG documents, include: (1) Did Venus, Mars, and Earth have a common origin? (2) What roles did comets from the outer Solar System play in delivering volatiles to Venus? (3) Did Venus once have and lose a global ocean? (4) How much has Venus outgassed, and what is the current rate of outgassing, particularly of sulfur, the major driver of Venus clouds? and (5) Through the deposition of energy within them, what role do these clouds play in (a) driving the cloud-level thermal structure and (b) generating and maintaining the super-rotating zonal windfield that covers the globe? Fundamental answers could be uniquely provided through in-situ sampling via mass spectrometry of the noble gases and their isotopes - in particular of the 8 stable Xe isotopes, the bulk abundances of Kr, and the 3 isotopes of Ne. Measurements of the relative abundances of the light isotopes of N, O, H, S and O, by, for example, tunable laser spectrometry, would provide additional insights into Venus's origin, surface outgassing and planetary escape. Such measurements could be performed by probes, landers, or balloons. On descent through the uv-absorbing layer and the surrounding H2SO4 cloud, each of these platforms could explore both the absorber and sulfur-cycle-associated reactive species and aerosols, thus addressing VEXAG desires for enhanced understanding of Venus' chemical cycles, aerosol properties, and radiative transfer. On descent to the surface, probes and landers can provide vertical profiles of temperatures and species abundances, as well as provide near-surface measurements of sulfur isotopes and trace sulfuric gases indicative of outgassing. Additional major in-situ goals dealing with Venus's global circulation and local dynamics can be addressed by a balloon platform floating within the convective middle cloud near ~55-km altitude. Drifting over a wide range of latitudes and all times-of-day and longitudes, such a floating platform could accurately measure (1) motions in all three dimensions - zonal, meridional, and vertical, including motions associated with convection and gravity waves, (2) simultaneous measurements of cloud particle size, their parent molecules, the local temperature, and vertical velocity, to study cloud formation/dissipation processes, and (3) the power and frequency of local lightning. Altogether, such in-situ measurements would potentially revolutionize our understanding of (1) Venus's circulation, including the role of waves and solar cloud heating in powering the planet's poorly-understood super-rotation, (2) Venus's sulfur cycle, key to Venus's current climate, and (3) how Earth's neighbor formed and evolved over the aeons.

  17. Magnetic fields in the Venus ionosphere: Dependence on the IMF direction—Venus express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Zhang, T. L.; Woch, J.; Wei, Y.

    2014-09-01

    The structure of the magnetized ionosphere of Venus is investigated using the magnetometer and plasma (Analyzer of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms 4) data from the Venus Express spacecraft. Observations surveying the low-altitude (h ? 250 km) ionosphere were made at solar zenith angles ? 75°. The magnetic field permeating the Venus ionosphere at solar minimum conditions increases at low altitudes and reaches a maximum at an altitude of ˜200 km. The orientation of the magnetic field in the peak is almost insensible to the magnetic field direction in the solar wind. For both sector polarities of the IMF, the magnetic field vector has a dominant dawn-dusk component. The topology of the magnetic field also occurs different for different signs of the cross-flow component of the IMF revealing either a sudden straightening with liberation of the magnetic field stresses or a closing into a loop. We discuss different mechanisms of the peak formation including local magnetization, a weak intrinsic planetary field, a dipole field induced by eddy currents, a remnant origin, or giant flux ropes. All of them fail to explain most of the observed features. We suggest that a decoupling of ion and electron motion at low altitudes due to ion-neutral collisions results in currents which produce different field configurations depending on the IMF orientation.

  18. Venus Exploration opportunities within NASA's Solar System Exploration roadmap

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Balint, Tibor; Thompson, Thomas; Cutts, James; Robinson, James

    2006-01-01

    Science goals to understand the origin, history and environment of Venus have been driving international space exploration missions for over 40 years. Past missions include the Magellan and Pioneer-Venus missions by the US; the Venera program by the USSR; and the Vega missions through international cooperation. Furthermore, the US National Research Council (NRC), in the 2003 Solar System Exploration (SSE) Decadal Survey, identified Venus as a high priority target, thus demonstrating a continuing interest in Earth's sister planet. In response to the NRC recommendation, the 2005 NASA SSE Roadmap included a number of potential Venus missions arching through all mission classes from small Discovery, to medium New Frontiers and to large Flagship class missions. While missions in all of these classes could be designed as orbiters with remote sensing capabilities, the desire for scientific advancements beyond our current knowledge - including what we expect to learn from the ongoing ESA Venus Express mission - point to in-situ exploration of Venus.

  19. Venus, Mars, and the ices on Mercury and the moon: astrobiological implications and proposed mission designs.

    PubMed

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Dohm, James M; Fairén, Alberto G; Baker, Victor R; Fink, Wolfgang; Strom, Robert G

    2005-12-01

    Venus and Mars likely had liquid water bodies on their surface early in the Solar System history. The surfaces of Venus and Mars are presently not a suitable habitat for life, but reservoirs of liquid water remain in the atmosphere of Venus and the subsurface of Mars, and with it also the possibility of microbial life. Microbial organisms may have adapted to live in these ecological niches by the evolutionary force of directional selection. Missions to our neighboring planets should therefore be planned to explore these potentially life-containing refuges and return samples for analysis. Sample return missions should also include ice samples from Mercury and the Moon, which may contain information about the biogenic material that catalyzed the early evolution of life on Earth (or elsewhere). To obtain such information, science-driven exploration is necessary through varying degrees of mission operation autonomy. A hierarchical mission design is envisioned that includes spaceborne (orbital), atmosphere (airborne), surface (mobile such as rover and stationary such as lander or sensor), and subsurface (e.g., ground-penetrating radar, drilling, etc.) agents working in concert to allow for sufficient mission safety and redundancy, to perform extensive and challenging reconnaissance, and to lead to a thorough search for evidence of life and habitability. PMID:16379531

  20. Preliminary study of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) for a Venus mission

    SciTech Connect

    Arp, Z. A. (Zane A.); Cremers, D. A. (David A.); Wiens, R. C. (Roger C.)

    2004-01-01

    Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) has been proposed as a candidate analysis system for missions to Mars, asteroids, and recently Venus. This technique has several distinct advantages over other techniques which have been used on past missions (X-Ray fluorescence on Viking 1 and 2, 1976; APXS on Pathfiider, 1997; MER, 2004). Two of the more important advantages LIBS has over other techniques for a mission to Venus is rapid elemental analysis of both high and low Z value elements and stand-off analysis at distances of many meters. Rapid elemental analysis and stand-off analysis are very important to missions to Venus due to the harsh environment at the planet surface. From the Venera missions it is known that on the Venusian surface the pressures are approximately 9.1 MPa (90 atm) and the temperature is near 735 K. For these reasons, the Soviet Venera surface probes had operational lifetimes of less than 2 hours. Currently Venus is the target of one of four missions specifically mentioned for consideration for NASA's New Frontier Program with a launch date of 2010 or earlier. In light of this, it is beneficial to evaluate different analysis methods such as LIBS, which offer to greatly increase the scientific return from such a mission. Currently we have begun to evaluate LIBS detection in an environment with pressures and compositions which are similar to those found on Venus. Although the temperature of Venus ({approx} 735 K) has not been taken into account in these experiments, due to the high temperature of the plasma ({approx}8000 K) signifcant perturbations of excitation characteristics sufficient to affect LIBS analytical capability would not be expected. Previous work, however, has shown that the pressure of the surrounding atmosphere can have a strong effect on the detection of elements in soil. These studies have mainly concentrated on pressures at or below earth ambient pressure, but one study has shown successful results at elevated pressures (3.0 MPa). Here we show results from a LIBS study at 9.1 MPa (90 atm) which demonstrates the feasibility of using this technique for elemental analysis at high pressure.

  1. Mitigating Extreme Environments for In-Situ Jupiter and Venus Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Balint, Tibor S.; Kolawa, Elizabeth A.; Cutts, James A.

    2006-01-01

    In response to the recommendations by the National Research Council (NRC), NASA's Solar System Exploration (SSE) Roadmap identified the in situ exploration of Venus and Jupiter as high priority science objectives. For Jupiter, deep entry probes are recommended, which would descend to approx.250 km - measured from the 1 bar pressure depth. At this level the pressure would correspond to approx.100 bar and the temperature would reach approx.500(deg)C. Similarly, at the surface of Venus the temperature and pressure conditions are approx.460(deg)C and approx.90 bar. Lifetime of the Jupiter probes during descent can be measured in hours, while in{situ operations at and near the surface of Venus are envisioned over weeks or months. In this paper we discuss technologies, which share commonalities in mitigating these extreme conditions over proposed mission lifetimes, specially focusing on pressure and temperature environments.

  2. Venus In Situ Explorer Mission design using a mechanically deployed aerodynamic decelerator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, B.; Venkatapathy, E.; Wercinski, P.; Yount, B.; Prabhu, D.; Gage, P.; Glaze, L.; Baker, C.

    The Venus In Situ Explorer (VISE) Mission addresses the highest priority science questions within the Venus community outlined in the National Research Council's Decadal Survey. The heritage Venus atmospheric entry system architecture, a 45° sphere-cone rigid aeroshell with a carbon phenolic thermal protection system, may no longer be the preferred entry system architecture compared to other viable alternatives being explored at NASA. A mechanically-deployed aerodynamic decelerator, known as the Adaptive Deployable Entry and Placement Technology (ADEPT), is an entry system alternative that can provide key operational benefits and risk reduction compared to a rigid aeroshell. This paper describes a mission feasibility study performed with the objectives of identifying potential adverse interactions with other mission elements and establishing requirements on decelerator performance. Feasibility is assessed through a launch-to-landing mission design study where the Venus Intrepid Tessera Lander (VITaL), a VISE science payload designed to inform the Decadal Survey results, is repackaged from a rigid aeroshell into the ADEPT decelerator. It is shown that ADEPT reduces the deceleration load on VITaL by an order of magnitude relative to a rigid aeroshell. The more benign entry environment opens up the VISE mission design environment for increased science return, reduced risk, and reduced cost. The ADEPT-VITAL mission concept of operations is presented and details of the entry vehicle structures and mechanisms are given. Finally, entry aerothermal analysis is presented that defines the operational requirements for a revolutionary structural-TPS material employed by ADEPT: three-dimensionally woven carbon cloth. Ongoing work to mitigate key risks identified in this feasibility study is presented.

  3. Integration of Radioisotope Heat Source with Stirling Engine and Cooler for Venus Internal-Structure Mission

    SciTech Connect

    Schock, Alfred

    1993-10-01

    The primary mission goal is to perform long-term seismic measurements on Venus, to study its largely unknown internal structure. The principal problem is that most payload components cannot long survive Venus's harsh environment, 90 bars at 500 degrees C. To meet the mission life goal, such components must be protected by a refrigerated payload bay. JPL Investigators have proposed a mission concept employing a lander with a spherical payload bay cooled to 25 degrees C by a Stirling cooler powered by a radioisotope-heated Sitrling engine. To support JPL's mission study, NASA/Lewis and MTI have proposed a conceptual design for a hydraulically coupled Stirling engine and cooler, and Fairchild Space - with support of the Department of Energy - has proposed a design and integration scheme for a suitable radioisotope heat source. The key integration problem is to devise a simple, light-weight, and reliable scheme for forcing the radioisotope decay heat to flow through the Stirling engine during operation on Venus, but to reject that heat to the external environment when the Stirling engine and cooler are not operating (e.g., during the cruise phase, when the landers are surrounded by heat shields needed for protection during subsequent entry into the Venusian atmosphere.) A design and integration scheme for achieving these goals, together with results of detailed thermal analyses, are described in this paper. There are 7 copies in the file.

  4. Variability of CO concentrations in the Venus troposphere from Venus Express/VIRTIS using a Band Ratio Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsang, C. C. C.; Taylor, F. W.; Wilson, C. F.; Liddell, S. J.; Irwin, P. G. J.; Piccioni, G.; Drossart, P.; Calcutt, S. B.

    2009-06-01

    A fast method is presented for deriving the tropospheric CO concentrations in the Venus atmosphere from near-infrared spectra using the night side 2.3 ?m window. This is validated using the spectral fitting techniques of Tsang et al. [Tsang, C.C.C., Irwin, P.G.J., Taylor, F.W., Wilson, C.F., Drossart, P., Piccioni, G., de Kok, R., Lee, C., Calcutt, S.B., and the Venus Express/VIRTIS Team, 2008a. Tropospheric carbon monoxide concentrations and variability on Venus with Venus Express/VIRTIS-M observations. J. Geophys. Res. 113, doi: 10.1029/2008JE003089. E00B08] to show that monitoring CO in the deep atmosphere can be done quickly using large numbers of observations, with minimal effect from cloud and temperature variations. The new method is applied to produce some 1450 zonal mean CO profiles using data from the first eighteen months of operation from the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer infrared mapping subsystem (VIRTIS-M-IR) on Venus Express. These results show many significant long- and short-term variations from the mean equator-to-pole increasing trend previously found from earlier Earth- and space-based observations, including a possible North-South dichotomy, with interesting implications for the dynamics and chemistry of the lower atmosphere of Venus.

  5. A study of an orbital radar mapping mission to Venus. Volume 2: Configuration comparisons and systems evaluation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    Configuration comparisons and systems evaluation for the orbital radar mapping mission of the planet Venus are discussed. Designs are recommended which best satisfy the science objectives of the Venus radar mapping concept. Attention is given to the interaction and integration of those specific mission-systems recommendations with one another, and the final proposed designs are presented. The feasibility, cost, and scheduling of these configurations are evaluated against assumptions of reasonable state-of-the-art growth and space funding expectations.

  6. Mars exploration, Venus swingby and conjunction class mission modes, time period 2000 to 2045

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Young, A. C.; Mulqueen, J. A.; Skinner, J. E.

    1984-01-01

    Trajectory and mission requirement data are presented for Earth-Mars opposition class and conjunction class round trip stopover mission opportunities available during the time period year 2000 to year 2045. The opposition class mission employs the gravitational field of Venus to accelerate the space vehicle on either the outbound or inbound leg. The gravitational field of Venus was used to reduce the propulsion requirement associated with the opposition class mission. Representative space vehicle systems are sized to compare the initial mass required in low Earth orbit of one mission opportunity with another mission opportunity. The interplanetary space vehicle is made up of the spacecraft and the space vehicle acceleration system. The space vehicle acceleration system consists of three propulsion stages. The first propulsion stage performs the Earth escape maneuver; the second stage brakes the spacecraft and Earth braking stage into the Mars elliptical orbit and effects the escape maneuver from the Mars elliptical orbit. The third propulsion stage brakes the mission module into an elliptical orbit at Earth return. The interplanetary space vehicle was assumed to be assembled in and depart from the space station circular orbit.

  7. The use of unbalanced precessions as a trajectory control technique for the Pioneer Venus missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frauenholz, R. B.

    1979-01-01

    The development and application of a technique using a single turn thruster to reorient a spinning spacecraft is described. The velocity resulting from using the single turn thruster is effectively used in the design of two trajectory correction maneuver strategies. The use of these strategies, together with achieved attitude measurements during the Pioneer Venus missions, yielded meaningful thruster calibration data which resulted in improved maneuver execution and overall navigation system accuracy that would have otherwise not been possible.

  8. VERITAS: A Mission Concept for the High Resolution Topographic Mapping and Imaging of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hensley, S.; Smrekar, S. E.; Pollard, B.

    2012-12-01

    Magellan, a NASA mission to Venus in the early 1990's, mapped nearly the entire surface of Venus with an S-band (12 cm) synthetic aperture radar and microwave radiometer and made radar altimeter measurements of the topography. These measurements revolutionized our understanding of the geomorphology, geology and geophysical processes that have shaped the evolution of the surface of Venus. The Magellan spacecraft had an elliptical orbit with an apoapsis of approximately 8000 km and a periapsis of 257 km and an orbital inclination of 86°. In this way the radar was able to collect long strips of data approximately 10000 km in length running north to south with altitudes varying from 3000 km to 257 km. During the remainder of the orbit the collected data was down linked to earth. The SAR mode operated in burst mode fashion whereby it transmitted a small string of pulses up to a couple of hundred pulses in length followed by a quiescent period when the radar ceased transmission and allowed interleaved operation of the altimeter and radiometer modes. This mode of operation allowed for a significant reduction in downlinked SAR imaging data at the expense of azimuth (i.e. along-track) resolution. However, the lack of finer resolution imagery and topography of the surface than that obtained by the Magellan mission has hampered the definitive answer to key questions concerning the processes and evolution of the surface of Venus. The Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR Topography And Spectroscopy (VERITAS) Mission is a proposed mission to Venus designed to obtain high resolution imagery and topography of the surface using an X-band radar configured as a single pass radar interferometer coupled with a multispectral NIR emissivity mapping capability. VERITAS would map surface topography with a spatial resolution of 250 m and 5 m vertical accuracy and generate radar imagery with 30 m spatial resolution. These capabilities represent an order of magnitude or better improvement of the Magellan system and are expected to reveal definitive information on processes not possible with the Magellan data. The combination of surface topography and image data provide unprecedented knowledge of Venus' tectonic and impact history, the timing and mechanisms of volcanic resurfacing, and the mantle processes responsible for them. The combination of instruments on VERITAS, and in particular the InSAR instrument, is designed to address a series of focused hypothesis driven questions left unresolved by the Magellan mission for example: 1) Is there evidence for a past tectonic or cratered surface beneath the plains? and 2) How and when did Venus resurface? This talk will present an overview of the proposed VERITAS mission, the radar instrument design and trade options and the projected performance as well as a brief overview of some of the major science objectives. This research was conducted at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

  9. Detecting atmospheric perturbations produced by Venus quakes Raphael Garcia

    E-print Network

    Garcia, Raphaël

    Detecting atmospheric perturbations produced by Venus quakes Rapha¨el Garcia Philippe Lognonn The possibility to detect seismic activity on Venus by using the mechanical coupling of the solid are analyzed in the framework of the VIR- TIS instrument on board the ESA Venus Express mission. 1

  10. Europe Scores New Planetary Success: Venus Express Enters Orbit around the Hothouse Planet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-04-01

    During the next four weeks, the Venus Express probe will perform a series of manoeuvres to reach the scheduled operational orbit for its scientific mission. It will move from its current highly elongated 9-day orbit to a 24-hour polar orbit, culminating at 66,000 km. From this vantage point, the orbiter will conduct an in-depth observation of the structure, chemistry and dynamics of the atmosphere of Venus for at least two Venusian days (486 Earth days). Enigmatic atmosphere From previous missions to Venus as well as observations directly from Earth, we already know that our neighbouring planet is shrouded in a thick atmosphere where extremes of temperature and pressure conditions are common. This atmosphere creates a greenhouse effect of tremendous proportions as it spins around the planet in four days in an unexplained “super-rotation” phenomenon. The mission of Venus Express will be to carry out a detailed characterisation of this atmosphere, using state-of-the-art sensors in order to answer the questions and solve the mysteries left behind by the first wave of explorers. It will also be the first Venus orbiter to conduct optical observations of the surface through “visibility windows” discovered in the infrared spectrum.V The commissioning of the onboard scientific instruments will begin shortly and the first raw data are expected within days. The overall science payload is planned to be fully operational within two months. Europe explores the Solar System With this latest success, ESA is adding another celestial body to its range of solar system studies. ESA also operates Mars Express around Mars, SMART-1 around the Moon and is NASA’s partner on the Cassini orbiter around Saturn. In addition, ESA is also operating the Rosetta probe en route to comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. It should reach its target and become the first spacecraft ever to enter orbit around a comet nucleus by 2014. Meanwhile, ESA also plans to complete the survey of our celestial neighbours with the launch of the BepiColombo mission to Mercury in 2013. “With the arrival of Venus Express, ESA is the only space agency to have science operations under way around four planets: Venus, the Moon, Mars and Saturn” underlines Professor David Southwood, the Director of ESA’s science programmes. “We are really proud to deliver such a capability to the international science community.” “To better understand our own planet, we need to explore other worlds in particular those with an atmosphere,” said Jean-Jacques Dordain, ESA Director General. “We’ve been on Titan and we already are around Mars. By observing Venus and its complex atmospheric system, we will be able to better understand the mechanisms that steers the evolution of a large planetary atmosphere and the change of climates. In the end, it will help us to get better models of what is actually going on in our own atmosphere, for the benefit of all Earth citizens.” State-of-the-art science package Venus Express was developed for ESA by a European industrial team led by EADS Astrium incorporating 25 main contractors from 14 European countries. Its design is derived from that of its highly successful predecessor, Mars Express, and its payload accommodates seven instruments including upgraded versions of three instruments developed for Mars Express and two for Rosetta. The PFS spectrometer will determine the temperature and composition profile of the atmosphere at very high resolution. It will also monitor the surface temperature and search for hot spots from possible volcanic activity. The UV/infrared SpicaV/SOIR spectrometer and the VeRa radioscience experiment will probe the atmosphere by observing the occultation of distant starts or the fading of radio signals on the planetary limb. SpicaV/SOIR will be particularly looking for traces of water molecules, molecular oxygen and sulphur compounds, which are suspected to exist in the atmosphere of Venus. The Virtis spectrometer will map the different layers of the atmosphere and provide imagery of the cloud systems at multipl

  11. Astrod-I: mission concept and Venus flybys

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Wei-Tou Ni; Yun Bao; Hansjörg Dittus; Tianyi Huang; Claus Lämmerzahl; Guangyu Li; Jun Luo; Zhen-Guo Ma; Jean François Mangin; Yu-Xin Nie; Achim Peters; Albrecht Rüdiger; Etienne Samain; Stephan Schiller; Sachie Shiomi; Timothy Sumner; Chien-Jen Tang; Jinhe Tao; Pierre Touboul; Haitao Wang; Andreas Wicht; Xue-Jun Wu; Yaoheng Xiong; Chongming Xu; Jun Yan; Da-Zhi Yao; Hsien-Chi Yeh; Shu-Lian Zhang; Yuan-Zhong Zhang; Ze-Bing Zhou

    2003-01-01

    ASTROD I is the first step of ASTROD (Astrodynamical Space Test of Relativity using Optical Devices). This mission concept has one spacecraft carrying a payload of a telescope, five lasers, and a clock together with ground stations (ODSN: Optical Deep Space Network) to test the optical scheme of interferometric and pulse ranging and yet give important scientific results. These scientific

  12. Reassessing the possibility of life on venus: proposal for an astrobiology mission.

    PubMed

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Irwin, Louis N

    2002-01-01

    With their similar size, chemical composition, and distance from the Sun, Venus and Earth may have shared a similar early history. Though surface conditions on Venus are now too extreme for life as we know it, it likely had abundant water and favorable conditions for life when the Sun was fainter early in the Solar System. Given the persistence of life under stabilizing selection in static environments, it is possible that life could exist in restricted environmental niches, where it may have retreated after conditions on the surface became untenable. High-pressure subsurface habitats with water in the supercritical liquid state could be a potential refugium, as could be the zone of dense cloud cover where thermoacidophilic life might have retreated. Technology based on the Stardust Mission to collect comet particles could readily be adapted for a pass through the appropriate cloud layer for sample collection and return to Earth. PMID:12469368

  13. Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    This NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) planet profile provides data and images of the planet Venus. These data include planet size, orbit facts, distance from the Sun, rotation and revolution times, temperature, atmospheric composition, density, surface materials and albedo. Images with descriptions of the planet include many surface features such as halos, craters, ridges, troughs, ticks and other volcano types, lava flows and other tectonic features. Some of the main region images show areas such as Selu Corona, Bright Plains, Gula Mons, Sif Mons, the Ovda Region, Danu Mountains, Akna Mountains, Crater Mead, Golubkina, Lavinia Region, the Eastern Lakshmi Region, Corona Derceto, and Sacajawea Patera. All of these images are from the Magellan Spacecraft.

  14. Analysis of Trajectory Parameters for Probe and Round-Trip Missions to Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dugan, James F., Jr.; Simsic, Carl R.

    1960-01-01

    For one-way transfers between Earth and Venus, charts are obtained that show velocity, time, and angle parameters as functions of the eccentricity and semilatus rectum of the Sun-focused vehicle conic. From these curves, others are obtained that are useful in planning one-way and round-trip missions to Venus. The analysis is characterized by circular coplanar planetary orbits, successive two-body approximations, impulsive velocity changes, and circular parking orbits at 1.1 planet radii. For round trips the mission time considered ranges from 65 to 788 days, while wait time spent in the parking orbit at Venus ranges from 0 to 467 days. Individual velocity increments, one-way travel times, and departure dates are presented for round trips requiring the minimum total velocity increment. For both single-pass and orbiting Venusian probes, the time span available for launch becomes appreciable with only a small increase in velocity-increment capability above the minimum requirement. Velocity-increment increases are much more effective in reducing travel time for single-pass probes than they are for orbiting probes. Round trips composed of a direct route along an ellipse tangent to Earth's orbit and an aphelion route result in the minimum total velocity increment for wait times less than 100 days and mission times ranging from 145 to 612 days. Minimum-total-velocity-increment trips may be taken along perihelion-perihelion routes for wait times ranging from 300 to 467 days. These wait times occur during missions lasting from 640 to 759 days.

  15. Thermal zonal winds in the Venus mesosphere from the Venus Express temperature soundings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccialli, Arianna; Titov, Dmitri; Tellmann, Silvia; Migliorini, Alessandra; Read, Peter; Grassi, Davide; Paetzold, Martin; Haeusler, Bernd; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Drossart, Pierre

    The Venus mesosphere (60-100 km altitude) is a transition region characterized by extremely complex dynamics: strong retrograde zonal winds dominate in the troposphere and lower meso-sphere while a solar-antisolar circulation can be observed in the upper mesosphere. The super-rotation extends from the surface up to the cloud top (˜65 km altitude) with wind speeds of only a few meters per second near the surface and reaching a maximum value of ˜100 m s-1 at cloud top, corresponding to a rotation period of ˜4 Earth days (˜60 times faster than Venus itself). The solar-antisolar circulation is driven by the day-night contrast in solar heating, and occurs above 110 km altitude with speeds of 120 m s-1 . The processes responsible for maintain-ing the zonal super-rotation in the lower atmosphere and its transition to the solar-antisolar circulation in the upper atmosphere are still poorly understood (Schubert et al.,2007). Different techniques have been used to obtain direct observations of wind at various altitudes: tracking of clouds in ultraviolet (UV) and near infrared (NIR) images give information on wind speeds at the cloud top (Moissl et al., 2009; Sanchez-Lavega et al., 2008) and within the clouds (˜47 km, ˜61 km) (Sanchez-Lavega et al., 2008) while ground-based measurements of Doppler shifts in the CO2 band at 10 µm (Sornig et al., 2008) and in several CO millimiter lines (Rengel et al., 2008) provide wind speeds above the clouds up to ˜110 km altitude. The deep atmosphere from the surface up to the cloud top has been investigated through the Doppler tracking of descent probes and balloons (Counselman et al., 1980; Kerzhanovich and Limaye, 1985). In the mesosphere, between 45-85 km of altitude, where direct observations of wind are not possible, the zonal wind field can be derived from the vertical temperature structure using a special approximation of the thermal wind equation: based on cyclostrophic balance. Previous studies (Leovy, 1973; Newman et al., 1984) showed that on a slowly rotating planet, like Venus, strong zonal winds at the cloud top can be described by a cyclostrophic balance in which the equatorward component of centrifugal force is balanced by the meridional pressure gradient. This equation gives a possibility to reconstruct the zonal wind if the temperature field is known, together with a suitable boundary condition on u. Two experiments onboard Venus Express are sounding the temperature structure of the Venus mesosphere: VIRTIS sounds the Venus Southern hemisphere in the altitude range 65-90 km with a very good spatial and temporal coverage (Grassi et al., 2008) and the Northern hemi-sphere but with more limited coverage; VeRa observes both northern and southern hemispheres between 40-90 km altitude with a vertical resolution of ˜500 m (Tellmann et al., 2008). Here we present zonal thermal winds derived applying cyclostrophic balance from VIRTIS and VeRa temperature retrievals. The main features of the retrieved winds are: (1) a midlatitude jet with a maximum speed up to 140 ± 15 m s-1 which occurs around 50° S latitude at 70 km altitude; (2) the fast decrease of the wind speed from 60° S toward the pole; (3) the decrease of the wind speed with increasing height above the jet (Piccialli et al., 2008). Cyclostrophic winds show satisfactory agreement with the cloud-tracked winds derived from the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC/VEx) UV images, although a disagreement is observed at the equator and near the pole due to the breakdown of the cyclostrophic approximation. From zonal thermal winds the Richardson number has been evaluated. In good agreement with previous studies (Allison et al., 1994), we have found that the atmosphere is dominated by convection from ˜45 km altitude up to the cloud top. A high value of Richardson number has been determined, cor-responding to the midlatitude jet and indicating a highly stable atmosphere. Verification of the necessary condition for barotropic instability implies that barotropic instability may occur on the poleward side of the midlatitude jet where pl

  16. Exploring Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2008-01-01

    With a temperature higher than the inside of your oven and atmospheric pressure equal to that a kilometer under the ocean, the surface of Venus is one of the most hostile environments in the solar system, and Venus exploration presents a challenge to technology. This lecture presents mission trade-offs and discusses a proposed mission concept for rover and aircraft based exploration of the surface and atmosphere of Venus. Several approaches to the technology, electronics, mechanical parts, and power systems, are discussed.

  17. PC-402 Pioneer Venus orbiter spacecraft mission operational characteristics document

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barker, F. C.; Butterworth, L. W.; Daniel, R. E.; Drean, R. J.; Filetti, K. A.; Fisher, J. N.; Nowak, L. A.; Porzucki, J.; Salvatore, J. O.; Tadler, G. A.

    1978-01-01

    The operational characteristics of the Orbiter spacecraft and its subsystems are described. In extensive detail. Description of the nominal phases, system interfaces, and the capabilities and limitations of system level performance are included along with functional and operational descriptions at the subsystem and unit level the subtleties of nominal operation as well as detailed capabilities and limitations beyond nominal performance are discussed. A command and telemetry logic flow diagram for each subsystem is included. Each diagram encountered along each command signal path into, and each telemetry signal path out of the subsystem. Normal operating modes that correspond to the performance of specific functions at the time of specific events in the mission are also discussed. Principal backup means of performing the normal Orbiter operating modes are included.

  18. First observation of 628 CO 2 isotopologue band at 3.3 ?m in the atmosphere of Venus by solar occultation from Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Vandaele, Ann Carine; Wilquet, Valérie; Montmessin, F.; Dahoo, R.; Villard, E.; Korablev, O.; Fedorova, A.

    2008-05-01

    The new ESA Venus Express orbiter is the first mission applying the probing technique of solar and stellar occultation to the atmosphere of Venus, with the SPICAV/SOIR instrument. SOIR is a new type of spectrometer used for solar occultations in the range 2.2-4.3 ?m. Thanks to a high spectral resolving power R˜15,000-20,000 (unprecedented in planetary space exploration), a new gaseous absorption band was soon detected in the atmospheric transmission spectra around 2982 cm -1, showing a structure resembling an unresolved Q branch and a number of isolated lines with a regular wave number pattern. This absorption could not be matched to any species contained in HITRAN or GEISA databases, but was found very similar to an absorption pattern observed by a US team in the spectrum of solar light reflected by the ground of Mars [Villanueva, G.L., Mumma, M.J., Novak, R.E., Hewagama, T., 2008. Icarus 195 (1), 34-44]. This team then suggested to us that the absorption was due to an uncatalogued transition of the 16O 12C 18O molecule. The possible existence of this band was soon confirmed from theoretical considerations by Perevalov and Tashkun. Some SOIR observations of the atmospheric transmission are presented around 2982 cm -1, and rough calculations of line strengths of the Q branch are produced, based on the isotopic ratio measured earlier in the lower atmosphere of Venus. This discovery emphasizes the role of isotopologues of CO 2 (as well as H 2O and HDO) as important greenhouse gases in the atmosphere of Venus.

  19. Advanced Stirling Duplex Materials Assessment for Potential Venus Mission Heater Head Application

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ritzert, Frank; Nathal, Michael V.; Salem, Jonathan; Jacobson, Nathan; Nesbitt, James

    2011-01-01

    This report will address materials selection for components in a proposed Venus lander system. The lander would use active refrigeration to allow Space Science instrumentation to survive the extreme environment that exists on the surface of Venus. The refrigeration system would be powered by a Stirling engine-based system and is termed the Advanced Stirling Duplex (ASD) concept. Stirling engine power conversion in its simplest definition converts heat from radioactive decay into electricity. Detailed design decisions will require iterations between component geometries, materials selection, system output, and tolerable risk. This study reviews potential component requirements against known materials performance. A lower risk, evolutionary advance in heater head materials could be offered by nickel-base superalloy single crystals, with expected capability of approximately 1100C. However, the high temperature requirements of the Venus mission may force the selection of ceramics or refractory metals, which are more developmental in nature and may not have a well-developed database or a mature supporting technology base such as fabrication and joining methods.

  20. Venus cloud bobber mission: A long term survey of the Venusian surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wai, James; Derengowski, Cheryl; Lautzenhiser, Russ; Emerson, Matt; Choi, Yongho

    1994-01-01

    We have examined the Venus Balloon concept in order to further develop the ideas and concepts behind it, and to creatively apply them to the design of the major Venus Balloon components. This report presents our models of the vertical path taken by the Venus Balloon and the entry into Venusian atmosphere. It also details our designs of the balloon, gondola, heat exchanger, power generator, and entry module. A vehicle is designed for a ballistic entry into the Venusian atmosphere, and an atmospheric model is created. The model is then used to set conditions. The shape and material of the vehicle are optimized, and the dimensions of the vehicle are then determined. Equipment is chosen and detailed that will be needed to collect and transmit information and control the mission. A gondola is designed that will enable this sensitive electronic equipment to survive in an atmosphere of very high temperature and pressure. This shape and the material of the shell are optimized, and the size is minimized. Insulation and supporting structures are designed to protect the payload equipment and to minimize mass. A method of cooling the gondola at upper altitudes was established. Power needs of the gondola equipment are determined. Power generation options are discussed and two separate thermoelectric generation models are outlined.

  1. The variable upper atmosphere of Venus, as determined by data from drag and torque measurements by Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, Håkan; Müller-Wodarg, Ingo; Rosenblatt, Pascal

    2013-04-01

    Until recently the only information on the structure of the polar upper atmosphere of Venus available has been based on the reference atmosphere models such as the VTS3 or VIRA models. These models extrapolate the values from low latitudes to high latitudes by using equivalent solar zenith angles. New measurements by Venus Express show that such extrapolations not always give correct results and that there is a permanent overestimate of the density at high latitudes. These new results have been reached by using two different but related techniques, both using an atmospheric drag effect on the spacecraft. By reducing the pericentre altitude the total mass density in the altitude range 150-200km can be measured in situ by monitoring the orbital decay caused by the drag on the spacecraft by the atmosphere via direct tracking of the Doppler signal on the telecommunication link. Such measurements have been performed with Venus Express several times during the last years as part of the Venus Express Atmospheric Drag Experiment (VExADE). The results indicate a large variability within only a few days and have led to questions if these variations are real or within the uncertainty of the measurements. A completely different and independent measurement is given by monitoring the torque asserted by the atmosphere on the spacecraft. This is done by monitoring the momentum accumulated in the reaction wheels during the pericenter pass and at the same time considering all other perturbing forces. This requires the spacecraft to fly in an asymmetric attitude with respect to the center of gravity, center of drag and the velocity vector. This technique has proven very sensitive, in particular if the geometric asymmetry is large, and offers an additional method of measuring atmospheric densities in-situ that previously had not been explored with the Venus Express spacecraft. Similar measurements have been done in the past by Magellan at Venus and by Cassini at Titan. Between 2009 and 2012 several campaigns, with altitudes going as low as 165 km, were held. The highest density measured was 7.7 10-12kg/m3 which is significantly less than earlier models predict. The results largely confirm the density measurements by the VExADE drag measurements and add to the confidence in the results from these measurements. By using these drag and torque results and assuming a hydrostatic diffusive equilibrium atmosphere a new model has been constructed. The model is fitted to the Venus Express remote sensing measurements in the upper mesosphere (VeRa radio occultation data) and lower thermosphere (SpicaV/SOIR data) to give a continuous transition across the different regions.

  2. A search for optical evidence for lightning on Venus with VIRTIS on Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abildgaard, Sofie; Cardesin, Alejandro; Garcia Múnoz, Antonio; Piccioni, Giuseppe

    2015-04-01

    Lightning is known to occur on the atmospheres of Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, but although the occurrence of lightning in the Venusian atmosphere has been published several times in the past years, always on the basis of detected electromagnetic pulses, the subject is still controversial. It is generally agreed that an optical observation of the phenomenon would settle the issue. In this work we analyse the data collection of hyper-spectral images produced by the Visible and InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) on Venus Express, that has been observing the Venusian atmosphere continuously since 2006. A dedicated search algorithm for transient events was developed and a detailed analysis of the archive was performed in all wavelengths. The first preliminary analysis have been performed and we have proven that transient events can easily be identified in the data. Work is ongoing for optimizing search parameters and performing a statistical analysis. In this contribution, we will present a summary of the data analysis process and some of the preliminary conclusion in the lightning detection/nondetection.

  3. Retrieval of the cyclostrophic wind in the Venus mesosphere from the VIRTIS/Venus Express temperature sounding.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccialli, Arianna; Titov, Dmitri; Grassi, Davide; Khatuntsev, Igor; Drossart, Pierre; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Migliorini, Alessandra

    Venus mesosphere is characterized by an extremely complex dynamics: a retrograde super rotation flow near the cloud top completes a full rotation of the planets in only four earth days and in the upper thermosphere a solar - antisolar circulation reaches speeds of 100 m/s. Earlier studies have shown that the strong zonal winds at cloud top are the result of local balance of pressure gradient and centripetal force which is called cyclostrophic balance. The thermal wind equation that describes this balance relates the vertical wind gradient to the latitudinal temperature gradient on isobaric levels. The temperature structure of Venus mesosphere has been observed with a good spatial and temporal coverage in the last two years from VIRTIS (Visual and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer) on board the Venus Express spacecraft. Here we present preliminary retrievals of the cyclostrophic wind derived from VIRTIS temperature sounding. The main features of the wind are 1) the midlatitude jet with a maximum speed of 80 - 90 ± 10 m/s which occurs around 50° S latitude at 70 km altitude; 2) the fast decrease of the wind speed from 60° S toward the pole; 3) the decrease of the wind speed with increasing height above the jet. The dependence of zonal wind on local time has been analysed, our preliminary results show that parameters of the mid-latitude jet only weekly depend on local solar time. Comparison with cloud - tracked wind derived from the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) show a general good agreement.

  4. Venus Express bistatic radar: High-elevation anomalous reflectivity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Richard A. Simpson; G. Leonard Tyler; Bernd Häusler; Riccardo Mattei; Martin Pätzold

    2009-01-01

    Magellan (MGN) bistatic radar observations in 1994 confirmed earlier Pioneer Venus reports of unusual Venus surface reflectivity and emissivity at elevations above 6054 km radius. They also revealed that the anomalous values of surface dielectric constant $\\\\varepsilon$ near Cleopatra Patera included a large imaginary component ($\\\\varepsilon$ ? ?i 100) at 13 cm wavelength, consistent with a semiconducting surface material. The

  5. Sulfuric acid vapor in the atmosphere of Venus as observed by the Venus Express Radio Science experiment VeRa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oschlisniok, Janusz; Pätzold, Martin; Häusler, Bernd; Tellmann, Silvia; Bird, Mike; Andert, Thomas; Remus, Stefan

    2015-04-01

    The cloud deck within Venus' atmosphere, which covers the entire planet between approx. 50 and 70 km altitude, consists mostly of liquid and gaseous sulfuric acid. The gaseous part increases strongly just below the main clouds and builds an approx. 15 km thick haze layer of H2SO4. This region is responsible for a strong absorption of radio waves as seen in VeRa radio science observations. The absorption of the radio signals during occultations is used to derive the abundance of gaseous sulfuric acid. VeRa probes the atmosphere of Venus since 2006 with radio signals at 13 cm (s-band) and 3.6 cm (x-band) wavelengths. The collection of nine years of radio science data provides a picture of the global distribution of the sulfuric acid vapor distribution within Venus' atmosphere. We present H2SO4 profiles retrieved with VeRa and compare those with H2SO4 profiles observed by previous missions.

  6. The electrical performance of Ag Zn batteries for the Venus multi-probe mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palandati, C.

    1975-01-01

    An evaluation of 5 Ah and 21 Ah Silver-Zinc batteries was made to determine their suitability to meet the energy storage requirements of the bus vehicle, 3 small probes and large probe for the Venus multi-probe mission. The evaluation included a 4 Ah battery for the small probe, a 21 Ah battery for the large probe, one battery of each size for the bus vehicle power, a periodic cycling test on each size battery and a wet stand test of charged and discharged cells of both cell designs. The study on the probe batteries and bus vehicle batteries included both electrical and thermal simulation for the entire mission. The effects on silver migration and zinc penetration of the cellophane separators caused by the various test parameters were determined by visual and X-ray fluorescence analysis. The 5 Ah batteries supported the power requirements for the bus vehicle and small probe. The 21 Ah large probe battery supplied the required mission power. Both probe batteries delivered in excess of 132 percent of rated capacity at the completion of the mission simulation.

  7. Mission Sizing and Trade Studies for Low Ballistic Coefficient Entry Systems to Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dutta, Soumyo; Smith, Brandon; Prabhu, Dinesh; Venkatapathy, Ethiraj

    2012-01-01

    The U.S and the U.S.S.R. have sent seventeen successful atmospheric entry missions to Venus. Past missions to Venus have utilized rigid aeroshell systems for entry. This rigid aeroshell paradigm sets performance limitations since the size of the entry vehicle is constrained by the fairing diameter of the launch vehicle. This has limited ballistic coefficients (beta) to well above 100 kg/m2 for the entry vehicles. In order to maximize the science payload and minimize the Thermal Protection System (TPS) mass, these missions have entered at very steep entry flight path angles (gamma). Due to Venus thick atmosphere and the steep-gamma, high- conditions, these entry vehicles have been exposed to very high heat flux, very high pressures and extreme decelerations (upwards of 100 g's). Deployable aeroshells avoid the launch vehicle fairing diameter constraint by expanding to a larger diameter after the launch. Due to the potentially larger wetted area, deployable aeroshells achieve lower ballistic coefficients (well below 100 kg/m2), and if they are flown at shallower flight path angles, the entry vehicle can access trajectories with far lower decelerations (50-60 g's), peak heat fluxes (400 W/cm2) and peak pressures. The structural and TPS mass of the shallow-gamma, low-beta deployables are lower than their steep-gamma, high-beta rigid aeroshell counterparts at larger diameters, contributing to lower areal densities and potentially higher payload mass fractions. For example, at large diameters, deployables may attain aeroshell areal densities of 10 kg/m2 as opposed to 50 kg/m2 for rigid aeroshells. However, the low-beta, shallow-gamma paradigm also raises issues, such as the possibility of skip-out during entry. The shallow-gamma could also increase the landing footprint of the vehicle. Furthermore, the deployable entry systems may be flexible, so there could be fluid-structure interaction, especially in the high altitude, low-density regimes. The need for precision in guidance, navigation and control during entry also has to be better understood. This paper investigates some of the challenges facing the design of a shallow-gamma, low-beta entry system.

  8. Atmospheric Entry Studies for Venus Missions: 45 Sphere-Cone Rigid Aeroshells and Ballistic Entries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prabhu, Dinesh K.; Spilker, Thomas R.; Allen, Gary A., Jr.; Hwang, Helen H.; Cappuccio, Gelsomina; Moses, Robert W.

    2013-01-01

    The present study considers direct ballistic entries into the atmosphere of Venus using a 45deg sphere-cone rigid aeroshell, a legacy shape that has been used successfully in the past in the Pioneer Venus Multiprobe Mission. For a number of entry mass and heatshield diameter combinations (i.e., various ballistic coefficients) and entry velocities, the trajectory space in terms of entry flight path angles between skip out and -30deg is explored with a 3DoF trajectory code, TRAJ. From these trajectories, the viable entry flight path angle space is determined through the use of mechanical and thermal performance limits on the thermal protection material and science payload; the thermal protection material of choice is entry-grade carbon phenolic, for which a material thermal response model is available. For mechanical performance, a 200 g limit is placed on the peak deceleration load experienced by the science instruments, and 10 bar is assumed as the pressure limit for entry-grade carbon-phenolic material. For thermal performance, inflection points in the total heat load distribution are used as cut off criteria. Analysis of the results shows the existence of a range of critical ballistic coefficients beyond which the steepest possible entries are determined by the pressure limit of the material rather than the deceleration load limit.

  9. Planetary and Space Science 56 (2008) 13201334 Venus Doppler winds at cloud tops observed

    E-print Network

    Widemann, Thomas

    2008-01-01

    Planetary and Space Science 56 (2008) 1320­1334 Venus Doppler winds at cloud tops observed online 23 July 2008 Abstract We present new wind measurements in Venus' lower mesosphere from visible spectroscopy during the 2007 worldwide coordinated ground campaign in support of ESA's Venus Express mission

  10. Experiencing Venus: Clues to the Origin, Evolution, and Chemistry of Terrestrial Planets

    E-print Network

    Atreya, Sushil

    171 Experiencing Venus: Clues to the Origin, Evolution, and Chemistry of Terrestrial Planets via In develop, launch, and execute missions to Earth's sister planet. On April 11, 2006, the Venus Express of knowledge of (1) the origin and evolution of Venus and (2) the photochemical and thermochemical processes

  11. Radio science investigations by VeRa onboard the Venus Express spacecraft

    Microsoft Academic Search

    B. Häusler; M. Pätzold; G. L. Tyler; R. A. Simpson; M. K. Bird; V. Dehant; J.-P. Barriot; W. Eidel; R. Mattei; S. Remus; J. Selle; S. Tellmann; T. Imamura

    2006-01-01

    The Venus Express Radio Science Experiment (VeRa) uses radio signals at wavelengths of 3.6 and 13cm (“X”- and “S”-band, respectively) to investigate the Venus surface, neutral atmosphere, ionosphere, and gravity field, as well as the interplanetary medium. An ultrastable oscillator (USO) provides a high quality onboard reference frequency source; instrumentation on Earth is used to record amplitude, phase, propagation time,

  12. A dynamic upper atmosphere of Venus as revealed by VIRTIS on Venus Express

    Microsoft Academic Search

    P. Drossart; G. Piccioni; J. C. Gérard; M. A. Lopez-Valverde; A. Sanchez-Lavega; L. Zasova; R. Hueso; F. W. Taylor; B. Bézard; A. Adriani; F. Angrilli; G. Arnold; K. H. Baines; G. Bellucci; J. Benkhoff; J. P. Bibring; A. Blanco; M. I. Blecka; R. W. Carlson; A. Coradini; A. di Lellis; T. Encrenaz; S. Erard; S. Fonti; V. Formisano; T. Fouchet; R. Garcia; R. Haus; J. Helbert; N. I. Ignatiev; P. Irwin; Y. Langevin; S. Lebonnois; D. Luz; L. Marinangeli; V. Orofino; A. V. Rodin; M. C. Roos-Serote; B. Saggin; D. M. Stam; D. Titov; G. Visconti; M. Zambelli; C. Tsang; Eleonora Ammannito; Alessandra Barbis; Rainer Berlin; Carlo Bettanini; Angelo Boccaccini; Guillaume Bonnello; Marc Bouyé; Fabrizio Capaccioni; Alejandro Cardesin; Francesco Carraro; Giovanni Cherubini; Massimo Cosi; Michele Dami; Maurizio de Nino; Davide Del Vento; Marco di Giampietro; Alessandro Donati; Olivier Dupuis; Sylvie Espinasse; Anna Fabbri; Agnès Fave; Iacopo Ficai Veltroni; Gianrico Filacchione; Katia Garceran; Yamina Ghomchi; Maurizio Giustizi; Brigitte Gondet; Yann Hello; Florence Henry; Stefan Hofer; Gerard Huntzinger; Juergen Kachlicki; René Knoll; Driss Kouach; Alessandro Mazzoni; Riccardo Melchiorri; Giuseppe Mondello; Francesco Monti; Christian Neumann; Fabrizio Nuccilli; Jérôme Parisot; Claudio Pasqui; Stefano Perferi; Gisbert Peter; Alain Piacentino; Carlo Pompei; Jean-Michel Réess; Jean-Pierre Rivet; Antonio Romano; Natalie Russ; Massimo Santoni; Adelmo Scarpelli; Alain Soufflot; Douchane Stefanovitch; Enrico Suetta; Fabio Tarchi; Nazzareno Tonetti; Federico Tosi; Bernd Ulmer

    2007-01-01

    The upper atmosphere of a planet is a transition region in which energy is transferred between the deeper atmosphere and outer space. Molecular emissions from the upper atmosphere (90-120km altitude) of Venus can be used to investigate the energetics and to trace the circulation of this hitherto little-studied region. Previous spacecraft and ground-based observations of infrared emission from CO2, O2

  13. The electrical performance of Ag\\/Zn batteries for the Venus multi-probe mission. [5- and 21Ah batteries

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Palandati

    1975-01-01

    An evaluation of 5-Ah and 21-Ah silver--zinc batteries was made to determine their suitability to meet the energy storage requirements of the bus vehicle, 3 small probes, and large probe for the Venus multi-probe mission. The evaluation included a 4-Ah battery for the small probe, a 21-Ah battery for the large probe, one battery of each size for the bus

  14. A dynamic upper atmosphere of Venus as revealed by VIRTIS on Venus Express.

    PubMed

    Drossart, P; Piccioni, G; Gérard, J C; Lopez-Valverde, M A; Sanchez-Lavega, A; Zasova, L; Hueso, R; Taylor, F W; Bézard, B; Adriani, A; Angrilli, F; Arnold, G; Baines, K H; Bellucci, G; Benkhoff, J; Bibring, J P; Blanco, A; Blecka, M I; Carlson, R W; Coradini, A; Di Lellis, A; Encrenaz, T; Erard, S; Fonti, S; Formisano, V; Fouchet, T; Garcia, R; Haus, R; Helbert, J; Ignatiev, N I; Irwin, P; Langevin, Y; Lebonnois, S; Luz, D; Marinangeli, L; Orofino, V; Rodin, A V; Roos-Serote, M C; Saggin, B; Stam, D M; Titov, D; Visconti, G; Zambelli, M; Tsang, C; Ammannito, Eleonora; Barbis, Alessandra; Berlin, Rainer; Bettanini, Carlo; Boccaccini, Angelo; Bonnello, Guillaume; Bouyé, Marc; Capaccioni, Fabrizio; Cardesin, Alejandro; Carraro, Francesco; Cherubini, Giovanni; Cosi, Massimo; Dami, Michele; De Nino, Maurizio; Del Vento, Davide; Di Giampietro, Marco; Donati, Alessandro; Dupuis, Olivier; Espinasse, Sylvie; Fabbri, Anna; Fave, Agnès; Veltroni, Iacopo Ficai; Filacchione, Gianrico; Garceran, Katia; Ghomchi, Yamina; Giustizi, Maurizio; Gondet, Brigitte; Hello, Yann; Henry, Florence; Hofer, Stefan; Huntzinger, Gerard; Kachlicki, Juergen; Knoll, René; Kouach, Driss; Mazzoni, Alessandro; Melchiorri, Riccardo; Mondello, Giuseppe; Monti, Francesco; Neumann, Christian; Nuccilli, Fabrizio; Parisot, Jérôme; Pasqui, Claudio; Perferi, Stefano; Peter, Gisbert; Piacentino, Alain; Pompei, Carlo; Réess, Jean-Michel; Rivet, Jean-Pierre; Romano, Antonio; Russ, Natalie; Santoni, Massimo; Scarpelli, Adelmo; Sémery, Alain; Soufflot, Alain; Stefanovitch, Douchane; Suetta, Enrico; Tarchi, Fabio; Tonetti, Nazzareno; Tosi, Federico; Ulmer, Bernd

    2007-11-29

    The upper atmosphere of a planet is a transition region in which energy is transferred between the deeper atmosphere and outer space. Molecular emissions from the upper atmosphere (90-120 km altitude) of Venus can be used to investigate the energetics and to trace the circulation of this hitherto little-studied region. Previous spacecraft and ground-based observations of infrared emission from CO2, O2 and NO have established that photochemical and dynamic activity controls the structure of the upper atmosphere of Venus. These data, however, have left unresolved the precise altitude of the emission owing to a lack of data and of an adequate observing geometry. Here we report measurements of day-side CO2 non-local thermodynamic equilibrium emission at 4.3 microm, extending from 90 to 120 km altitude, and of night-side O2 emission extending from 95 to 100 km. The CO2 emission peak occurs at approximately 115 km and varies with solar zenith angle over a range of approximately 10 km. This confirms previous modelling, and permits the beginning of a systematic study of the variability of the emission. The O2 peak emission happens at 96 km +/- 1 km, which is consistent with three-body recombination of oxygen atoms transported from the day side by a global thermospheric sub-solar to anti-solar circulation, as previously predicted. PMID:18046396

  15. Carbon monoxide and temperature in the upper atmosphere of Venus from VIRTIS/Venus Express non-LTE limb measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilli, G.; López-Valverde, M. A.; Peralta, J.; Bougher, S.; Brecht, A.; Drossart, P.; Piccioni, G.

    2015-03-01

    The upper mesosphere and the lower thermosphere of Venus (from 90 to 150 km altitude) seems to play a transition region in photochemistry, dynamics and radiation, but is still very poorly constrained observationally. Since 2006 VIRTIS on board Venus Express has been obtaining limb observations of CO fluorescent infrared emissions in a systematic manner. This study represents the scientific exploitation of this dataset and reports new information on the composition and temperature at those altitudes. This work is focused on the 4.7 ? m emission of CO as observed by VIRTIS, which contains two emission bands, the fundamental and the first hot of the main CO isotope. A specific scheme for a simultaneous retrieval of CO and temperature is proposed, based on results of a comprehensive non-LTE model of these molecular emissions. A forward model containing such non-LTE model is used at the core of an inversion scheme that consists of two steps: (i) a minimization procedure of model-data differences and (ii) a linear inversion around the solution of the first step. A thorough error analysis is presented, which shows that the retrievals of CO and temperature are very noisy but can be improved by suitable averaging of data. These averages need to be consistent with the non-LTE nature of the emissions. Unfortunately, the data binning process reduced the geographical coverage of the results. The obtained retrieval results indicate a global distribution of the CO in the Venus dayside with a maximum around the sub-solar point, and a decrease of a factor 2 towards high latitudes. Also a gradient from noon to the morning and evening sides is evident in the equator, this being smaller at high latitudes. No morning-afternoon differences in the CO concentration are observed, or are comparable to our retrieval errors. All this argues for a CO distribution controlled by dynamics in the lower thermosphere, with a dominant sub-solar to anti-solar gradient. Similar variations are found with the Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (VTGCM), but the VIRTIS CO is systematically larger than in the model. The thermal structure obtained by VIRTIS presents a hint of local maximum around 115 km near the terminator at equatorial latitudes, but not at noon, in clear contrast to VTGCM predictions and to an upper mesosphere in pure radiative balance. A few tentative ideas to explain these model-data discrepancies are discussed.

  16. Correlations between Venus nightside near infrared emissions measured by VIRTIS/Venus Express and Magellan radar data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller, N.; Helbert, J.; Hashimoto, G. L.; Tsang, C. C. C.; Erard, S.; Piccioni, G.; Drossart, P.

    2008-09-01

    Background The Venus Express Spacecraft images the nightside thermal emissions using the VIRTIS imaging spectrometer. At 1.02 micron thermal emission from the surface is penetrates the atmosphere but the signal is attenuated by scattering and absorption [1, 2]. Although the measured flux at top of the atmosphere is nonlinearly related to the original emission of the surface, it is still positively correlated with the product of surface temperature and surface emissivity [3]. The surface temperature of Venus is relatively well constrained as a monotonous function of altitude. Emissivity at 1 micron depends strongly on surface composition, in particular abundance of mafic minerals [3]. Mapping the thermal emission of the surface of Venus therefore supplements radar data as it allows to infer relative variation of surface composition. Data Processing This study examines the correlation of VIRTIS images showing a signal of the surface with all known parameters that govern radiance and applies semi empirical relations to remove the respective influences. 1. Stray sunlight is removed by subtraction of a spectrum template scaled to fit radiance at 1.4 ¹m [2] 2. Limb darkening is accounted for using a linear phase function consistent with results of radiative transfer modeling [4]. 3. Cloud opacity is determined from 1.31 ¹m and applied to 1.02 ¹m while accounting for multiple reflections between lower atmosphere and clouds [3]. Result is brightness temperature of thermal emission below the cloud deck but above the lowest 20 km of the atmosphere. 4. Influence of surface temperature and lower atmosphere absorption is determined by correlation of VIRTIS declouded brightness temperature and Magellan Topography data [5]. To further reduce the influence of cloud contrast and increase the signal of the surface, all suitable VIRTIS observations are map projected and stacked to create a map of the southern hemisphere of Venus. Observations and Interpretation As expected from the small diurnal, latitudinal and seasonal variations of temperature in the atmosphere of Venus, the map created from all retrieved brightness temperatures is highly correlated with Magellan altimetry (fig. 1). Local deviation from the globally averaged brightness to topography relation can be either ascribed to surface emissivity or unexpected temperature variations. Temperature variations e.g. due to active volcanism are unlikely to be persistent over the time of observations. The stacked data is here interpreted in terms of surface emissivity variation by removal of the influence of topography (fig. 2). The emissivity variation found is correlated with geomorphological features established from Magellan radar images. It is generally lower at tessera terrain. This might indicate felsic surface composition of tessera highlands, e.g. anorthosite or granite [6, 7]. Creation of felsic crust is unlikely under current conditions. Some, but not all volcanic edifices show increased emissivity. Large lava flows in the Lada terra - Lavinia planitia region also show an increased thermal emission. In particular Cavilaca and Juturna fluctus, emanating from Boala corona (70S 0E) inside Quetzalpetlatl corona, are characterized by an increased IR flux. This might be consistent with the large scale extrusive volcanism of ultramafic composition considered by [8] in the context of chemical differentiation in the upper mantle. Discussion These observations are however highly sensitive to errors in the altimetry applied. A known systematic error in the Magellan dataset stemming from spacecraft orbit determination uncertainty is qualitatively confirmed by comparison with VIRTIS data (see longitude -120 in fig. 1 and 2. Tessera terrain is known to strongly scatter radar waves which might influences accuracy of altimetry. An quantitative analysis and search for small scale systematic errors is in progress during the submission of this abstract. References [1] Lecacheux, J., P. Drossart, P. Laques, F. Deladerriere, and F. Colas (1993), Detection of the surface of Venus at 1.0 micromet

  17. Pluto Express: Mission to Pluto

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Giuliano, J. A.

    1996-01-01

    Pluto is the smallest, outermost and last-discovered planet in the Solar System and the only one that has never been visited by a spacecraft from Earth. Pluto and its relatively large satellite Charon are the destinations of a proposed spacecraft mission for the next decade, being developed for NASA by scientists and engineers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

  18. Radial Evolution of a Magnetic Cloud: MESSENGER, STEREO, and Venus Express Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Good, S. W.; Forsyth, R. J.; Raines, J. M.; Gershman, D. J.; Slavin, J. A.; Zurbuchen, T. H.

    2015-07-01

    The Solar Orbiter and Solar Probe Plus missions will provide observations of magnetic clouds closer to the Sun than ever before, and it will be good preparation for these missions to make full use of the most recent in situ data sets from the inner heliosphere—namely, those provided by MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) and Venus Express—for magnetic cloud studies. We present observations of the same magnetic cloud made by MESSENGER at Mercury and later by Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory-B (STEREO-B), while the spacecraft were radially aligned in 2011 November. Few such radial observations of magnetic clouds have been previously reported. Estimates of the solar wind speed at MESSENGER are also presented, calculated through the application of a previously established technique. The cloud?s flux rope has been analyzed using force-free fitting; the rope diameter increased from 0.18 to 0.41 AU (corresponding to an {r}{{H}}0.94 dependence on heliocentric distance, rH), and the axial magnetic field strength dropped from 46.0 to 8.7 nT (an {r}{{H}}-1.84 dependence) between the spacecraft, clear indications of an expanding structure. The axial magnetic flux was ?0.50 nT AU2 at both spacecraft, suggesting that the rope underwent no significant erosion through magnetic reconnection between MESSENGER and STEREO-B. Further, we estimate the change in the cloud?s angular width by assuming helicity conservation. It has also been found that the rope axis rotated by 30° between the spacecraft to lie close to the solar equatorial plane at STEREO-B. Such a rotation, if it is a common feature of coronal mass ejection propagation, would have important implications for space weather forecasting.

  19. Photochemical Control of the Distribution of Venusian Water and Comparison to Venus Express SOIR Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parkinson, Chris; Yung, Yuk; Esposito, Larry; Gao, Peter; Bougher, Steve

    2014-11-01

    We use the JPL/Caltech 1-D KINETICS photochemical model to solve the continuity diffusion equation for the atmospheric constituent abundances and total number density as a function of radial distance from the planet Venus. The photochemistry of the Venus atmosphere from 58 to 112 km is modeled using an updated and expanded chemical scheme (Zhang et al., 2010; 2012), guided by the results of recent observations. We mainly follow Zhang et al. (2010; 2012) to guide our choice of boundary conditions for 40 species. We fit the SOIR Venus Express results of 1 ppm at 70-90 km (Bertaux et al (2007) by modeling water from between 10 - 35 ppm at our 58 km lower boundary and using an SO2 mixing ratio of 25 ppm as our nominal reference value. We then vary the SO2 mixing ratio at the lower boundary between 5 and 75 ppm and find that it can control the water distribution at higher altitudes.

  20. The Lavoisier mission : A system of descent probe and balloon flotilla for geochemical investigation of the deep atmosphere and surface of Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    E. Chassefière; J. J. Berthelier; J.-L. Bertaux; E. Quèmerais; J.-P. Pommereau; P. Rannou; F. Raulin; P. Coll; D. Coscia; A. Jambon; P. Sarda; J. C. Sabroux; G. Vitter; A. Le Pichon; B. Landeau; P. Lognonné; Y. Cohen; S. Vergniole; G. Hulot; M. Mandéa; J.-F. Pineau; B. Bézard; H. U. Keller; D. Titov; D. Breuer; K. Szego; Cs. Ferencz; M. Roos-Serote; O. Korablev; V. Linkin; R. Rodrigo; F. W. Taylor; A.-M. Harri

    2002-01-01

    Lavoisier mission is a joint effort of eight European countries and a technological challenge aimed at investigating the lower atmosphere and the surface of Venus. The mission consists of a descent probe and three balloons to be deployed below the cloud deck. Its main scientific objectives may be summarized as following : (i) composition of the deep atmosphere : noble

  1. Venus: Not evil, jus t a bit unfortunate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Fw

    2010-02-01

    The Venus Express mission, currently orbiting Earth's nearest planetary neighbour, has just had its mission extended until the end of 2012 by the European Space Agency (ESA). In December 2010 it will be joined by the Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter, which has similar goals of understanding the atmosphere and climate. In this article Fred Taylor looks at what has been learned so far and what remains mysterious about our nearby twin, with its torrid weather and its global warming issues.

  2. MESSENGER and Venus Express Observations of the Near-tail of Venus: Magnetic Flux Transport, Current Sheet Structure, and Flux Rope Formation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slavin, James A.; Boardsen, S. A.; Sarantos, M.; Acuna, M. H.; Anderson, B. J.; Barabash, S.; Benna, M.; Fraenz, M.; Gloeckler, G.; Gold, R. E.; Ho, G. C.; Korth, H.; Krimigis, S. M.; McNutt, R. L., Jr.; Raines, J. M.; Solomon, S. C.; Zhang, T.-L.; Zurbuchen, T. H.

    2008-01-01

    At 23:08 UT on 5 June 2007 the MESSENGER spacecraft reached its closest approach altitude (338 km) during its second flyby of Venus en route to its 2011 orbit insertion at Mercury. Whereas no measurements were collected during MESSENGER'S first Venus flyby in October 2006, the Magnetometer (MAG) and the Energetic Particle and Plasma Spectrometer (EPPS) operated successfully throughout this second encounter. Venus provides the solar system's best example to date of a solar wind - ionosphere planetary interaction. We present MESSENGER observations of the near-tail of Venus with emphasis on determining the time scales for magnetic flux transport, the structure of the cross-tail current sheet at very low altitudes (approx. 300 to 1000 km), and the nature and origin of a magnetic flux rope observed in the current sheet. The availability of the simultaneous Venus Express upstream measurements provides a unique opportunity to examine the influence of solar wind plasma and interplanetary magnetic field conditions on this planet's solar wind interaction at solar minimum.

  3. A suggested trajectory for a Venus-sun, earth-sun Lagrange points mission, Vela

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bender, D. F.

    1979-01-01

    The possibility is suggested of investigating the existence of small, as-yet undiscovered, asteroids orbiting in the solar system near the earth-sun or Venus-sun stable Lagrange points by means of a spacecraft which traverses these regions. The type of trajectory suggested lies in the ecliptic plane and has a period of 5/6 years and a perihelion at the Venus orbital distance. The regions in which stable orbits associated with the earth and with Venus may lie are estimated to be a thin and tadpole-shaped area extending from 35 deg to 100 deg from the planet. Crossings of the regions by the trajectory are described, and the requirements for detecting the presence of 1 km sized asteroids are presented and shown to be attainable.

  4. Densities inferred from ESA's Venus Express aerobraking campaign at 130 km altitude

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruinsma, Sean; Marty, Jean-Charles; Svedhem, Håkan; Williams, Adam; Mueller-Wodarg, Ingo

    2015-04-01

    In June-July 2014, ESA performed a planned aerobraking campaign with Venus Express to measure neutral densities above 130 km in Venus' atmosphere by means of the engineering accelerometers. To that purpose, the orbit perigee was lowered to approximately 130 km in order to enhance the atmospheric drag effect to the highest tolerable levels for the spacecraft; the accelerometer resolution and precision were not sufficient at higher altitudes. This campaign was requested as part of the Venus Express Atmospheric Drag Experiment (VExADE). A total of 18 orbits (i.e. days) were processed using the attitude quaternions to correctly orient the spacecraft bus and solar arrays in inertial space, which is necessary to accurately compute the exposed surface in the ram direction. The accelerometer data provide good measurements approximately from 130-140 km altitude; the length of the profiles is about 85 seconds, and they are on the early morning side (LST=4.5) at high northern latitude (70°N-82°N). The densities are a factor 2-3 larger than Hedin's VTS-3 thermosphere model, which is consistent with earlier results obtained via classical precise orbit determination at higher altitudes. Wavelike structures with amplitudes of 20% and more are detected, with wavelengths of about 100-500 km. We cannot entirely rule out that these waves are caused by the spacecraft or due to some unknown instrumental effect, but we estimate this probability to be very low.

  5. [Construction of venus vector carrying IGFBP7 gene and its expression in K562 cells].

    PubMed

    Wu, Shui-Yan; Hu, Shao-Yan; Cen, Jian-Nong; Chen, Zi-Xing

    2012-02-01

    The aim of this study was to construct venus vector carrying the gene encoding insulin-like growth factor binding protein 7 (IGFBP7), which provides an effective platform for exploring the function of this gene in leukemia. After digestion by restriction endonuclease, the IGFBP7 gene was recombined with the transfer plasmid. The venus particles were packaged using 293T cells to transfect K562 cells, and identification was performed by means of flow cytometry, RT-PCR and Western blot. The results showed that the sequence of cloned IGFBP7 gene was the same as that in GenBank. The size of product restricted by BamHI was same as the predicted one. GFP expression was observed in 293T and K562 cells with the fluorescent microscopy and flow cytometry. The expression level of mRNA and protein of IGFBP7 was confirmed by RT-PCR and Western blotting in K562 cells. It is concluded that venus vector carrying IGFBP7 gene has been successfully constructed and provides basis for exploring function of IGFBP7 in K562 cells. PMID:22391189

  6. Re-analysis of Sulfur Dioxide Variability in the Venus Atmosphere Using Restored Pioneer Venus Orbiter UVS Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGouldrick, Kevin; Esposito, L. W.; Simmons, K. E.; Dorey, M.; Pankratz, C. K.

    2012-10-01

    Initial analysis of Pioneer Venus Orbiter Ultraviolet Spectrometer (PVOUVS) data at wavelengths of 207nm and 240nm by Esposito et al. (1988) suggested a significant decline in SO2 concentration at 40mb between 1979 and 1988. More recent observations of Venus by ultraviolet spectrometers on ESA's Venus Express and ground based microwave spectroscopy suggest that SO2 at 40mb is closer to that seen near the start of the Pioneer Venus mission, and/or suggest the existence of a previously undetected reservoir of SO2 at altitudes above about 1mb. We present results of a re-analysis of the PVOUVS data to re-assess the SO2 concentration and distribution in the upper atmosphere of Venus, taking into account the newer knowledge derived in the last twenty years from Venus Express, in orbit since 2006, and groundbased observations. The wavelength range of PVOUVS overlaps with the SPICAV and VIRTIS-M-Vis instruments on Venus Express. The longer wavelength data of PVOUVS, analyzed in detail for the first time by this project, will allow for a direct (though obviously not simultaneous) comparison with the current Venus Express observations. The Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics is carrying out a project to restore and preserve data products from several past missions for archiving and for use by the scientific community. This project includes the restoration of data from the ultraviolet spectrometers on Mariner 6/7, Mariner 9, Pioneer Venus, and Galileo. Restored and PDS-compliant data sets from these missions will soon be made available by the team. Pertinent to this presentation, the PVOUVS data have been restored, including spacecraft pointing and orbit attitude information and preliminary radiometric calibrations. These data cover the range of wavelengths from about 110nm to about 360nm, using a variety of observing modes. This work is funded though the NASA Planetary Mission Data Analysis Program, project number NNH08ZDA001N.

  7. Mesospheric temperature at terminator using SDO/HMI aureole photometry and comparison with Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widemann, Thomas; Tanga, Paolo; Carine Vandaele, Ann; Wilquet, Valerie; Mahieux, Arnaud

    2013-04-01

    We report on SDO/HMI photometric observations during the June 5-6 transit of Venus. Close to ingress and egress phases, the fraction of Venus disk projected outside the solar photosphere is outlined by an irregular thin arc of light called the "aureole". We have shown that the the aureole photometry reflects the local density scale height and the altitude of the refracting layer (Tanga et al. 2012). Since the aureole brightness is the only quantity that can be measured during the transit, an appropriate model allows us to determine both parameters and constrain the local mesospheric temperature along the terminator. Our measurements are in excellent agreement with the VEx/SOIR temperatures obtained during orbit 2238 at evening terminator during solar ingress (46.75N - LST = 6.075PM) and solar egress (31.30N - LST = 6.047PM) as seen from the orbiter. The polar aureole, significantly brighter than the mid-latitude aureole due to the larger scale height of the polar mesosphere, appears consistently offset toward morning terminator by about 15 deg. latitude near 75N. This result reflects local latitudinal structure in the polar mesosphere, both in temperature and aerosol altitude distribution. Relation with ESA / Venus Express / SOIR mean profiles (Mahieux et al., 2012) and temperature modeling at terminator will be discussed at the meeting. Mahieux et al., J. Geophys. Res. , VOL. 117, E07001, doi:10.1029/2012JE004058 (2012) Tanga et al., Icarus 218, 207-219 (2012)

  8. International Collaboration for Venus Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cutts, James; Limaye, Sanjay; Zasova, Ludmila; Wilson, Colin; Ocampo, Adriana; Glaze, Lori; Svedhem, H.; Nakamura, Masato; Widemann, Thomas

    The Venus Exploration Analysis Group (VEXAG) was established by NASA in July 2005 to identify scientific priorities and strategy for exploration of Venus. From the outset, VEXAG has been open to the international community participation and has followed the progress of the ESA Venus Express Mission and the JAXA Akasuki mission as well exploring potential broad international partnerships for Venus exploration through coordinated science and missions. This paper discussed three mechanisms through which these collaborations are being explored in which VEXAG members participate One pathway for international collaboration has been through COSPAR. The International Venus Exploration Working Group (IVEWG) was formed during the 2012 COSPAR general assembly in Mysore, India. Another potentially significant outcome has been the IVEWG’s efforts to foster a formal dialog between IKI and NASA/PSD on the proposed Venera D mission resulting in a meeting in June 2013 to be followed by a discussion at the 4MS3 conference in October 2013. This has now resulted in an agreement between NASA/PSD and IKI to form a joint Science Definition Team for Venera D. A second pathway has been through an international focus on comparative climatology. Scientists from the established space faring nations participated in a first international conference on Comparative Climatology for Terrestrial Planet (CCTP) in Boulder Colorado in June 2012 sponsored by several international scientific organizations. A second conference is planned for 2015. The Planetary Robotics Exploration Coordinating Group (PRECG) of International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) the IAA has been focusing on exploring affordable contributions to the robotic exploration by non-space-faring nations wishing to get involved in planetary exploration. PRECG has sponsored a two year study of Comparative Climatology for which Venus is the focal point and focused on engaging nations without deep space exploration capabilities. A third area of interchange has been the International Planetary Probe Workshop (IPPW) , now in its eleventh year, which brings together scientists, technologists and mission designers interested in the exploration of planets with atmospheres and particularly in the challenges of entry, descent and landing and sustained flight on other planets. IPPW has been an opportunity for developing the collaborations at a grass roots level. With both NASA and ESA favoring competitive rather than strategic approaches for selecting planetary missions (except for Moon and Mars), future collaboration on Venus exploration will involve flexible partnerships. However, international standards for proximity communication frequencies and protocols will be vital to international collaboration.

  9. Venus volcanism

    SciTech Connect

    Head, J.W.

    1985-01-01

    Eruption styles and processes on the planets are known to be strongly influenced by such factors as gravity, temperature, and atmospheric characteristics. The ascent and eruption of magma on Venus in the current Venus environment must take into account the influence of the extreme surface temperatures (650-750 K) and pressures (40-100 bars) on these processes. Conditions on Venus will reduce the subsurface exsolution of volatiles and lead to a reduction of the possible range of explosive interactions with the atmosphere. Pyroclastic eruptions will be severely inhibited and continuous magma disruption by gas bubble growth may not occur at all unless the exsolved magma volatile content exceeds several weight percent. Recent US and USSR spacecraft missions and Earth-based radar observations are beginning to provide a view of the range of Venus volcanic features, including domes, cones, calderas, shields, and flows. The nature of many lava flows suggests that numerous eruptions have effusion rates exceeding common terrestrial rates and lying more in the range inferred for lunar basaltic flood eruptions (10/sup 4/-10/sup 5/m/sup 3//s). Shield volcanoes are often wide but are low (<2 km elevation) relative to those on Mars and the Earth. Volcano height depends in part on the depth of origin of the magma and the density contrast between the lava and the rocks between the source and the surface, both of which may be different on Venus. Correlations between volcanic style and tectonic structure are emerging.

  10. Return to Venus of AKATSUKI, the Japanese Venus Orbiter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, M.; Iwagami, N.; Satoh, T.; Taguchi, M.; Watanabe, S.; Takahashi, Y.; Imamura, T.; Suzuki, M.; Ueno, M.; Yamazaki, A.; Fukuhara, T.; Yamada, M.; Ishii, N.; Ogohara, K.

    2011-12-01

    Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter 'AKATSUKI' (PLANET-C) was proposed in 2001 with strong support by international Venus science community and approved as an ISAS mission soon after the proposal. AKATSUKI and ESA's Venus Express complement each other in Venus climate study. Various coordinated observations using the two spacecraft have been planned. Also participating scientists from US have been selected. Its science target is to understand the climate of Venus. The mission life we expected was more than 2 Earth years in Venus orbit. AKATSUKI was successfully launched at 06:58:22JST on May 21, by H-IIA F17. After the separation from H-IIA, the telemetry from AKATSUKI was normally detected by DSN Goldstone station (10:00JST) and the solar cell paddles' expansion was confirmed. AKATSUKI was put into the 3-axis stabilized mode in the initial operation from Uchinoura station and the critical operation was finished at 20:00JST on the same day. The malfunction, which happened during the Venus Orbit Insertion (VOI) on7 Dec, 2010 is as follows. We set all commands on Dec. 5. Attitude control for Venus orbit insertion (VOI) was automatically done on Dec. 6. Orbital maneuver engine (OME) was fired 08:49 JST on Dec. 7. 1min. after firing the spacecraft went into the occultation region and we had no telemetry, but we expected to continuous firing for 12min. Recording on the spacecraft told us later that, unfortunately the firing continued just 152sec. and stopped. The reason of the malfunction of the OME was the blocking of check valve of the gas pressure line to push the fuel to the engine. We failed to make the spacecraft the Venus orbiter, and it is rotating the sun with the orbital period of 203 days. As the Venus orbit the sun with the period of 225 days, AKATSUKI has a chance to meet Venus again in 5 or 6 years depending on the orbit correction plan. Let us summarize the present situation of AKATSUKI. Most of the fuel still remains. But the condition of the propulsion system is unclear. ISAS is examining various scenarios of second Venus orbit insertion depending on the conditions of the check valve and the OME. Thermal condition during the extended cruise phase is severe. The solar flux (W/m2) to which the spacecraft is exposed from May 21, 2010 (Launch date) to the end of 2016. We expected about 2600W/m2 in the Venus orbit, but it is exposed to more than 3600W/m2 at perihelion (0.6AU from the sun). The temperatures of the instruments exposed to space gradually increased as the spacecraft approaching the perihelion. We tried to minimize the number of instruments whose temperatures exceed the allowed upper limits by letting a certain side of the spacecraft face to the sun. After passing the perihelion every instruments have been working normally. The degradation of the reflectivity of the outer film (MLI) during the extended cruise may influence the temperature tendency. Laboratory tests to evaluate the degradation are ongoing. We operate the test maneuver of the OME in September and hopefully the orbit maneuver in November, which leads the spacecraft close to Venus in 2015. We will report the result in the presentation.

  11. Ionospheric photoelectrons at Venus: Initial observations by ASPERA-4 ELS

    Microsoft Academic Search

    A. J. Coates; R. A. Frahm; D. R. Linder; D. O. Kataria; Y. Soobiah; G. Collinson; J. R. Sharber; J. D. Winningham; S. J. Jeffers; S. Barabash; J.-A. Sauvaud; R. Lundin; M. Holmström; Y. Futaana; M. Yamauchi; A. Grigoriev; H. Andersson; H. Gunell; A. Fedorov; J.-J. Thocaven; T. L. Zhang; W. Baumjohann; E. Kallio; H. Koskinen; J. U. Kozyra; M. W. Liemohn; Y. Ma; A. Galli; P. Wurz; P. Bochsler; D. Brain; E. C. Roelof; P. Brandt; N. Krupp; J. Woch; M. Fraenz; E. Dubinin; S. McKenna-Lawlor; S. Orsini; R. Cerulli-Irelli; A. Mura; A. Milillo; M. Maggi; C. C. Curtis; B. R. Sandel; K. C. Hsieh; K. Szego; A. Asamura; M. Grande

    2008-01-01

    We report the detection of electrons due to photo-ionization of atomic oxygen and carbon dioxide in the Venus atmosphere by solar helium 30.4nm photons. The detection was by the Analyzer of Space Plasma and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) Electron Spectrometer (ELS) on the Venus Express (VEx) European Space Agency (ESA) mission. Characteristic peaks in energy for such photoelectrons have been predicted

  12. Large scale atmospheric waves in the Venus mesosphere as seen by the VeRa Radio Science instrument on Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tellmann, Silvia; Häusler, Bernd; Hinson, David P.; Tyler, G. Leonard; Andert, Thomas P.; Bird, Michael K.; Imamura, Takeshi; Pätzold, Martin; Remus, Stefan

    2015-04-01

    Atmospheric waves on all spatial scales play a crucial role in the redistribution of energy, momentum, and atmospheric constituent in planetary atmosphere and are thought to be involved in the development and maintenance of the atmospheric superrotation on Venus. The Venus Express Radio-Science Experiment VeRa sounded the Venus neutral atmosphere and ionosphere in Earth occultation geometry using the spacecraft radio subsystem at two coherent frequencies. Radial profiles of neutral number density, covering the altitude range 40-90 km, are then converted to vertical profiles of temperature and pressure, assuming hydrostatic equilibrium. The extensive VeRa data set enables us to study global scale atmospheric wave phenomena like thermal tides in the mesosphere and troposphere. A pronounced local time dependency of the temperature is found in the mesosphere at different altitude levels. Wave-2 structures dominate the low latitude range in the upper mesosphere while the higher latitudes show a strong wave-1 structure at the top of the cloud layer. The investigation of these wave structures provides valuable information about the energy transport in the atmosphere.

  13. Geographic distribution of zonal wind and UV albedo at cloud top level from VMC camera on Venus Express: Influence of Venus topography through stationary gravity waves vertical propagation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Khatunstsev, Igor; Hauchecorne, Alain; Markiewicz, Wojciech; Marcq, Emmanuel; Lebonnois, Sébastien; Patsaeva, Marina; Turin, Alexander

    2015-04-01

    UV images (at 365 nm) of Venus cloud top collected with VMC camera on board Venus Express allowed to derive a large number of wind measurements at altitude 67±2 km from tracking of cloud features in the period 2006-2012. Both manual (45,600) and digital (391,600) individual wind measurements over 127 orbits were analyzed showing various patterns with latitude and local time. A new longitude-latitude geographic map of the zonal wind shows a conspicuous region of strongly decreased zonal wind, a remarkable feature that was unknown up to now. While the average zonal wind near equator (from 5°S to 15°s) is -100.9 m/s in the longitude range 200-330°, it reaches -83.4 m/s in the range 60-100°, a difference of 17.5 m/s. When compared to the altimetry map of Venus, it is found that the zonal wind pattern is well correlated with the underlying relief in the region of Aphrodite Terra, with a downstream shift of about 30° (˜3,200 km). We interpret this pattern as the result of stationary gravity waves produced at ground level by the up lift of air when the horizontal wind encounters a mountain slope. These waves can propagate up to cloud top level, break there and transfer their momentum to the zonal flow. A similar phenomenon is known to operate on Earth with an influence on mesospheric winds. The LMD-GCM for Venus was run with or without topography, with and without a parameterization of gravity waves and does not display such an observed change of velocity near equator. The cloud albedo map at 365 nm varies also in longitude and latitude. We speculate that it might be the result of increased vertical mixing associated to wave breaking, and decreased abundance of the UV absorber which makes the contrast in images. The impact of these new findings on current super rotation theories remains to be assessed. This work was triggered by the presence of a conspicuous peak at 117 days in a time series of wind measurements. This is the length of the solar day as seen at the ground of Venus. Since VMC measurements are done preferably in a local time window centred on the sub-solar point, any parameter having a geographic longitude dependence will show a peak at 117 days.

  14. Revealing the face of Venus: Magellan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    An overview of the Magellan spacecraft and mission is presented. Topics covered include: a description of the Magellan spacecraft; Venus geology; Venus gravity; synthetic aperture radar; and radar sensing.

  15. Technology perspectives in the future exploration of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cutts, James A.; Balint, Tibor S.; Chassefiere, Eric; Kolawa, Elizabeth A.

    Science goals to understand the origin, history and environment of Venus have been driving international space exploration missions for over 40 years. Today, Venus is still identified as a high priority science target in NASA's Solar System Exploration Roadmap, and clearly fits scientific objectives of ESA's Cosmic Vision Program in addition to the ongoing Venus Express mission, while JAXA is planning to launch its own Venus Climate Orbiter. Technology readiness has often been the pivotal factor in mission prioritization. Missions in all classes—small, medium or large—could be designed as orbiters with remote sensing capabilities, however, the desire for scientific advancements beyond our current knowledge point to in-situ exploration of Venus at the surface and lower atmosphere, involving probes, landers, and aerial platforms. High altitude balloons could circumnavigate Venus repeatedly; deep probes could operate for extended periods utilizing thermal protection technologies, pressure vessel designs and advancements in high temperature electronics. In situ missions lasting for over an Earth day could employ a specially designed dynamic Stirling Radioisotope Generator (SRG) power system, that could provide both electric power and active thermal control to the spacecraft. An air mobility platform, possibly employing metallic bellows, could allow for all axis control, long traversing and surface access at multiple desired locations, thus providing an advantage over static lander or rover based architectures. Sample return missions are also featured in all planetary roadmaps. The Venus exploration plans over the next three decades are anticipated to greatly contribute to our understanding of this planet, which subsequently would advance our overall knowledge about Solar System history and habitability.

  16. Vesper - Venus Chemistry and Dynamics Orbiter - A NASA Discovery Mission Proposal: Submillimeter Investigation of Atmospheric Chemistry and Dynamics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chin, Gordon

    2011-01-01

    Vesper conducts a focused investigation of the chemistry and dynamics of the middle atmosphere of our sister planet- from the base of the global cloud cover to the lower thermosphere. The middle atmosphere controls the stability of the Venus climate system. Vesper determines what processes maintain the atmospheric chemical stability, cause observed variability of chemical composition, control the escape of water, and drive the extreme super-rotation. The Vesper science investigation provides a unique perspective on the Earth environment due to the similarities in the middle atmosphere processes of both Venus and the Earth. Understanding key distinctions and similarities between Venus and Earth will increase our knowledge of how terrestrial planets evolve along different paths from nearly identical initial conditions.

  17. Power system comparison for the Pluto Express mission

    SciTech Connect

    Harty, R.B. [Rockwell Aerospace, Canoga Park, CA (United States). Rocketdyne Div.

    1995-12-31

    This paper presents a comparison of three advanced radioisotope power systems, along with a down sized RTG for the Pluto Express mission. These three advanced radioisotope power systems were the Radioisotope Alkali Metal Thermal--to-Electric Converter (RAMTEC), Radioisotope Stirling, and Radioisotope Thermophotovoltaic (RTPV). For the Pluto Express mission, the power requirement at the end of the 10-y mission is 74 We. It was found that all three advanced power systems could meet the required end of mission power with two General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) modules. The RTG required six modules to meet the power requirement. Only the RAMTEC and RTPV met the mass goal of 9.5 kg. The AMTEC has a radiator area more than a factor of 10 lower than the Stirling and RTPV power systems, which simplifies spacecraft integration.

  18. On Target for Venus Set Oriented Computation of Energy Efficient Low Thrust Trajectories

    E-print Network

    On Target for Venus ­ Set Oriented Computation of Energy Efficient Low Thrust Trajectories Michael for a mission to Venus. Keywords: set oriented numerics, dynamical system, earth venus transfer, three body

  19. Characterizing Volcanic Eruptions on Venus: Some Realistic (?) Scenarios

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stofan, E. R.; Glaze, L. S.; Grinspoon, D. H.

    2011-01-01

    When Pioneer Venus arrived at Venus in 1978, it detected anomalously high concentrations of SO2 at the top of the troposphere, which subsequently declined over the next five years. This decline in SO2 was linked to some sort of dynamic process, possibly a volcanic eruption. Observations of SO2 variability have persisted since Pioneer Venus. More recently, scientists from the Venus Express mission announced that the SPICAV (Spectroscopy for Investigation of Characteristics of the Atmosphere of Venus) instrument had measured varying amounts of SO2 in the upper atmosphere; VIRTIS (Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer) measured no similar variations in the lower atmosphere (ESA, 4 April, 2008). In addition, Fegley and Prinn stated that venusian volcanoes must replenish SO2 to the atmosphere, or it would react with calcite and disappear within 1.9 my. Fegley and Tremain suggested an eruption rate on the order of approx 1 cubic km/year to maintain atmospheric SO2; Bullock and Grinspoon posit that volcanism must have occurred within the last 20-50 my to maintain the sulfuric acid/water clouds on Venus. The abundance of volcanic deposits on Venus and the likely thermal history of the planet suggest that it is still geologically active, although at rates lower than Earth. Current estimates of resurfacing rates range from approx 0.01 cubic km/yr to approx 2 cubic km/yr. Demonstrating definitively that Venus is still volcanically active, and at what rate, would help to constrain models of evolution of the surface and interior, and help to focus future exploration of Venus.

  20. Beagle 2: the astrobiology lander on ESA's Mars Express mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sims, M. R.; Pillinger, C. T.

    Due for launch in 2003 as part of the Mars Express mission, the primary goal of the Beagle 2 lander is the detection of extinct or extant life on Mars. Atmospheric studies, analysis of subsurface material and regime, and the first attempt at in-situ radiometric dating of rocks on another planet make Beagle 2 unique among planetary mission. The lander is named after Darwin's ship, H.M.S Beagle.

  1. Mariner Venus/Mercury 1973 navigation strategy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mckinley, E. L.; Jones, J. B.; Bantell, M. H.

    1973-01-01

    This paper presents the navigational aspects of the Mariner Venus/Mercury 1973 mission. Principal emphasis is on the development of the trajectory correction strategy, propellant costs, and delivery accuracies at Venus and Mercury. Key error sources and mission constraints are discussed. Of particular interest are the statistics of the first, post-Venus, maneuver which must correct for the magnification of errors in the Venus encounter. Finally, although not a primary objective of the mission, the analysis is extended to include a second Mercury encounter.

  2. The characteristics of the O2 Herzberg II and Chamberlain bands observed with VIRTIS/Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliorini, A.; Piccioni, G.; Gérard, J. C.; Soret, L.; Slanger, T. G.; Politi, R.; Snels, M.; Drossart, P.; Nuccilli, F.

    2013-03-01

    The oxygen Venus nightglow emissions in the visible spectral range have been known since the early observations from the Venera spacecraft. Recent observations with the VIRTIS instrument on board Venus Express allowed us to re-examine the Herzberg II system of O2 and to further study its vertical distribution, in particular the (0-?? with ?? = 7-13) bands. The present work describes the vertical profile of the observed bands and relative intensities from limb observation data. The wavelength-integrated intensities of the Herzberg II bands, with ?? = 7-11, are inferred from the recorded spectra. The resulting values lie in the range of 84-116 kR at the altitudes of maximum intensity, which are found to lie in the range of 93-98 km. Three bands of the Chamberlain system, centered at 560 nm, 605 nm, and 657 nm have been identified as well. Their emission peak is located at about 100 km, 4 km higher than the Herzberg II bands. For the first time, the O2 nightglow emissions were investigated simultaneously in the visible and in the IR spectral range, showing a good agreement between the peak position for the Herzberg II and the O2(a?g-X?g-) bands. An airglow model, proposed by Gérard et al. (Gérard, J.C., Soret, L., Migliorini, A., Piccioni, G. [2013]. Icarus.) starting from realistic O and CO2 vertical distributions derived from Venus-Express observations, allows reproduction of the observed profiles for the three O2 systems.

  3. Chemical Weathering Kinetics of Basalt on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fegley, Bruce, Jr.

    1997-01-01

    The purpose of this project was to experimentally measure the kinetics for chemical weathering reactions involving basalt on Venus. The thermochemical reactions being studied are important for the CO2 atmosphere-lithosphere cycle on Venus and for the atmosphere-surface reactions controlling the oxidation state of the surface of Venus. These reactions include the formation of carbonate and scapolite minerals, and the oxidation of Fe-bearing minerals. These experiments and calculations are important for interpreting results from the Pioneer Venus, Magellan, Galileo flyby, Venera, and Vega missions to Venus, for interpreting results from Earth-based telescopic observations, and for the design of new Discovery class (e.g., VESAT) and New Millennium missions to Venus such as geochemical landers making in situ elemental and mineralogical analyses, and orbiters, probes and balloons making spectroscopic observations of the sub-cloud atmosphere of Venus.

  4. Characterization of gravity waves at Venus cloud top from the Venus Monitoring Camera images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccialli, A.; Titov, D.; Svedhem, H.; Markiewicz, W. J.

    2012-04-01

    Since 2006 the European mission Venus Express (VEx) is studying Venus atmosphere with a focus on atmospheric dynamics and circulation. Recently, several experiments on board Venus Express have detected waves in the Venus atmosphere both as oscillations in the temperature and wind fields and as patterns on the cloud layer. Waves could be playing an important role in the maintenance of the atmospheric circulation of Venus since they can transport energy and momentum. High resolution images of Venus Northern hemisphere obtained with the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC/VEx) show distinct wave patterns at the cloud tops (~70 km altitude) interpreted as gravity waves. Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) is a CCD-based camera specifically designed to take images of Venus in four narrow band filters in UV (365 nm), visible (513 nm), and near-IR (965 and 1000 nm). A systematic visual search of waves in VMC images was performed; more than 1700 orbits were analyzed and wave patterns were observed in about 200 images. With the aim to characterize the wave types and their possible origin, we retrieved wave properties such as location (latitude and longitude), local time, solar zenith angle, packet length and width, and orientation. A wavelet analysis was also applied to determine the wavelength and the region of dominance of each wave. Four types of waves were identified in VMC images: long, medium, short and irregular waves. The long type waves are characterized by long and narrow straight features extending more than a few hundreds kilometers and with a wavelength within the range of 7 to 48 km. Medium type waves have irregular wavefronts extending more than 100 km and with wavelengths in the range 8 - 21 km. Short wave packets have a width of several tens of kilometers and extends to few hundreds kilometers and are characterized by small wavelengths (3 - 16 km). Often short waves trains are observed at the edges of long features and seem connected to them. Irregular wave fields extend beyond the field of view of VMC and appear to be the result of wave breaking or wave interference. The waves are often identified in all channels and are mostly found at high latitudes (60-80°N) in the Northern hemisphere and seem to be concentrated above Ishtar Terra, a continental size highland that includes the highest mountain belts of the planet, thus suggesting a possible orographic origin of the waves. However, at the moment it is not possible to rule out a bias in the observations due to the spacecraft orbit that prevents waves to be seen at lower latitudes, because of lower resolution, and on the night side of the planet.

  5. High Temperature Seismometer, Electronics, and Sensor Development for Venus Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunter, G. W.; Ponchak, G. E.; Beheim, G. M.; Neudeck, P. G.; Spry, D. J.; Scardelletti, M. C.; Meredith, R. D.; Taylor, B.; Beard, S.; Kiefer, W. S.

    2015-04-01

    This poster describes work to develop long-lived seismometry, high temperature electronics, and sensor technologies operational in Venus conditions with the potential to enable new Venus surface missions.

  6. Orbital Express mission operations planning and resource management using ASPEN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chouinard, Caroline; Knight, Russell; Jones, Grailing; Tran, Daniel

    2008-04-01

    As satellite equipment and mission operations become more costly, the drive to keep working equipment running with less labor-power rises. Demonstrating the feasibility of autonomous satellite servicing was the main goal behind the Orbital Express (OE) mission. Like a tow-truck delivering gas to a car on the road, the "servicing" satellite of OE had to find the "client" from several kilometers away, connect directly to the client, and transfer fluid (or a battery) autonomously, while on earth-orbit. The mission met 100% of its success criteria, and proved that autonomous satellite servicing is now a reality for space operations. Planning the satellite mission operations for OE required the ability to create a plan which could be executed autonomously over variable conditions. As the constraints for execution could change weekly, daily, and even hourly, the tools used create the mission execution plans needed to be flexible and adaptable to many different kinds of changes. At the same time, the hard constraints of the plans needed to be maintained and satisfied. The Automated Scheduling and Planning Environment (ASPEN) tool, developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, was used to create the schedule of events in each daily plan for the two satellites of the OE mission. This paper presents an introduction to the ASPEN tool, an overview of the constraints of the OE domain, the variable conditions that were presented within the mission, and the solution to operations that ASPEN provided. ASPEN has been used in several other domains, including research rovers, Deep Space Network scheduling research, and in flight operations for the NASA's Earth Observing One mission's EO1 satellite. Related work is discussed, as are the future of ASPEN and the future of autonomous satellite servicing.

  7. Venus within ESA probe reach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-03-01

    Venus Express mission controllers at the ESA Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany are making intensive preparations for orbit insertion. This comprises a series of telecommands, engine burns and manoeuvres designed to slow the spacecraft down from a velocity of 29000 km per hour relative to Venus, just before the first burn, to an entry velocity some 15% slower, allowing the probe to be captured into orbit around the planet. The spacecraft will have to ignite its main engine for 50 minutes in order to achieve deceleration and place itself into a highly elliptical orbit around the planet. Most of its 570 kg of onboard propellant will be used for this manoeuvre. The spacecraft’s solar arrays will be positioned so as to reduce the possibility of excessive mechanical load during engine ignition. Over the subsequent days, a series of additional burns will be done to lower the orbit apocentre and to control the pericentre. The aim is to end up in a 24-hour orbit around Venus early in May. The Venus orbit injection operations can be followed live at ESA establishments, with ESOC acting as focal point of interest (see attached programme). In all establishments, ESA specialists will be on hand for interviews. ESA TV will cover this event live from ESOC in Darmstadt. The live transmission will be carried free-to-air. For broadcasters, complete details of the various satellite feeds are listed at http://television.esa.int. The event will be covered on the web at venus.esa.int. The website will feature regular updates, including video coverage of the press conference and podcast from the control room at ESA’s Operations Centre. Media representatives wishing to follow the event at one of the ESA establishments listed below are requested to fill in the attached registration form and fax it back to the place of their choice. For further information, please contact: ESA Media Relations Division Tel : +33(0)1.53.69.7155 Fax: +33(0)1.53.69.7690 Venus Express Orbit Insertion - Tuesday 11 April 2006 ESA/ESOC, Robert Bosch Strasse, 5 - Darmstadt (Germany) PROGRAMME 07:30 - Doors open 08:45 - Start of local event, welcome addresses 09:10 - ESA TV live from Mission Control Room (MCR) starts 09:17 - Engine burn sequence starts 09:45 - Occultation of spacecraft by Venus starts 09:55 - Occultation ends 10:07 - Main engine burn ends 10:20 - Address by Jean-Jacques Dordain, ESA’s Director General, and other officials Break and buffet Interview opportunities 11:30-12:15 - Press Conference Jean-Jacques Dordain, Director General, ESA Prof. David Southwood, Director of Science, ESA Gaele Winters, Director of Operations and Infrastructure, ESA Manfred Warhaut, Flight Operations Director, ESA Håkan Svedhem, Venus Express Project Scientist, ESA Don McCoy, Venus Express Project Manager, ESA 13:15 - End of event at ESOC ACCREDITATION REQUEST FORM Venus Express Orbit Insertion - ESA/ESOC Darmstadt - 11 April 2006 First name:___________________ Surname:_____________________ Media:______________________________________________________ Address: ___________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________ Tel:_______________________ Fax: ___________________________ Mobile :___________________ E-mail: ________________________ I will be attending the Venus Express Orbit Insertion event at the following site: [ ] Germany Location: ESA/ESOC Address: Robert Bosch Strasse 5, Darmstadt, Germany Opening hours: 07:30 - 13:00 Contact: Jocelyne Landeau-Constantin, Tel: +49.6151.902.696 - Fax: +49.6151.902.961 [ ] France Location: ESA HQ Address: 8/10, rue Mario Nikis - Paris 15, France Opening hours: 08:00 - 13:00 Contact: Anne-Marie Remondin - Tel: +33(0)1.53.69.7155 - fax: +33(0)1.53.69.7690 [ ] The Netherlands Location: Newton Room, ESA/ESTEC Address: Keplerlaan 1, Noordwijk, The Netherlands Opening hours: 08:30 - 12:30 Contact: Michel van Baal, tel. + 31 71 565 3006, fax + 31 71 565 5728 [ ] Italy Location: ESA/ESRIN Address: Via Galileo Galilei, Frascati (Rome), Italy Opening hours: 07:00 - 14:

  8. Orbital Express Mission Operations Planning and Resource Management using ASPEN

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chouinard, Caroline; Knight, Russell; Jones, Grailing; Tran, Daniel

    2008-01-01

    As satellite equipment and mission operations become more costly, the drive to keep working equipment running with less man-power rises.Demonstrating the feasibility of autonomous satellite servicing was the main goal behind the Orbital Express (OE) mission. Planning the satellite mission operations for OE required the ability to create a plan which could be executed autonomously over variable conditions. The Automated-Scheduling and Planning Environment (ASPEN)tool, developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, was used to create the schedule of events in each daily plan for the two satellites of the OE mission. This paper presents an introduction to the ASPEN tool, the constraints of the OE domain, the variable conditions that were presented within the mission, and the solution to operations that ASPEN provided. ASPEN has been used in several other domains, including research rovers, Deep Space Network scheduling research, and in flight operations for the ASE project's EO1 satellite. Related work is discussed, as are the future of ASPEN and the future of autonomous satellite servicing.

  9. Ionospheric inversion of the Venus Express radio occultation data observed by Shanghai 25 m and New Norcia 35 m antennas

    E-print Network

    Zhang, Su-jun; Li, Jin-ling; Ping, Jin-song; Chen, Cong-yan; Zhang, Ke-fei

    2015-01-01

    Electron density profiles of the Venus' ionosphere are inverted from the Venus Express (VEX) one-way open-loop radio occultation experiments carried out by Shanghai 25 m antenna from November 2011 to January 2012 at solar maximum conditions and by New Norcia 35 m antenna from August 2006 to June 2008 at solar intermediate conditions. The electron density profile (from 110 km to 400 km) retrieved from the X-band egress observation at Shanghai station, shows a single peak near 147 km with a peak density of about $2 \\times 10^4 \\rm{cm}^{-3}$ at a solar zenith angle of 94$^{\\circ}$. As a comparison, the VEX radio science (VeRa) observations at New Norcia station were also examined, including S-, X-band and dual-frequency data in the ingress mode. The results show that the electron density profiles retrieved from the S-band data are more analogous to the dual-frequency data in the profile shape, compared with the X-band data. Generally, the S-band results slightly underestimate the magnitude of the peak density, w...

  10. AMTEC radioisotope power system for the Pluto Express mission

    SciTech Connect

    Ivanenok, J.F. III; Sievers, R.K. [Advanced Modular Power Systems, Inc., Ann Arbor, MI (United States)

    1995-12-31

    The Alkali Metal Thermal to Electric Converter (AMTEC) technology has made substantial advances in the last 3 years through design improvements and technical innovations. In 1993 programs began to produce an AMTEC cell specifically for the NASA Pluto Express Mission. A set of efficiency goals was established for this series of cells to be developed. According to this plan, cell {number_sign}8 would be 17% efficient but was actually 18% efficient. Achieving this goal, as well as design advances that allow the cell to be compact, has resulted in pushing the cell from an unexciting 2 W/kg and 2% efficiency to very attractive 40 W/kg and 18% measured efficiency. This paper will describe the design and predict the performance of a radioisotope powered AMTEC system for the Pluto Express mission.

  11. Moon Express: Lander Capabilities and Initial Payload and Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spudis, P.; Richards, R.; Burns, J. O.

    2013-12-01

    Moon Express Inc. is developing a common lander design to support the commercial delivery of a wide variety of possible payloads to the lunar surface. Significant recent progress has been made on lander design and configuration and a straw man mission concept has been designed to return significant new scientific and resource utilization data from the first mission. The Moon Express lander is derived from designs tested at NASA Ames Research Center over the past decade. The MX-1 version is designed to deliver 26 kg of payload to the lunar surface, with no global restrictions on landing site. The MX-2 lander can carry a payload of 400 kg and can deliver an upper stage (designed for missions that require Earth-return, such as sample retrieval) or a robotic rover. The Moon Express lander is powered by a specially designed engine capable of being operated in either monoprop or biprop mode. The concept for the first mission is a visit to a regional pyroclastic deposit on the lunar near side. We have focused on the Rima Bode dark mantle deposits (east of crater Copernicus, around 13 N, 4 W). These deposits are mature, having been exposed to solar wind for at least 3 Ga, and have high Ti content, suggesting high concentrations of implanted hydrogen. Smooth areas near the vent suggest that the ash beds are several tens of meters thick. The projected payload includes an imaging system to document the geological setting of the landing area, an APX instrument to provide major element composition of the regolith and a neutron spectrometer to measure the bulk hydrogen composition of the regolith at the landing site. Additionally, inclusion of a next generation laser retroreflector would markedly improve measurements of lunar librations and thus, constrain the dimensions of both the liquid and solid inner cores of the Moon, as well as provide tests of General Relativity. Conops are simple, with measurements of the surface composition commencing immediately upon landing. APX chemical analysis and neutron measurements would be completed within an hour or so. If any propellant remains after landing and a 'hop' to another site was undertaken, we can repeat these analyses at the second site, adding confidence that we have obtained representative measurements. Thus, the scientific goals of the first Moon Express mission are satisfied early and easily in the mission profile. This mission scenario provides significant scientific accomplishment for very little investment in payload and operations. Although minimally configured, the payload has been chosen to provide the most critical ground truth parameters for mapping hydrogen concentrations across the entire lunar surface. As hydrogen is a key element to the development of the Moon, understanding its occurrences in both non-polar and polar environments is critical. This mission achieves significant new scientific accomplishment as well as taking the first steps towards lunar presence and permanence.

  12. Photochemical Control of the Distribution of Water and Sulphuric Acid Aerosols in the Clouds and Upper Haze of Venus with Comparison to Venus Express SOIR Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parkinson, C. D.; Gao, P.; Yung, Y. L.; Bougher, S. W.; Bardeen, C.

    2014-12-01

    Observations of the middle and lower cloud layers of Venus has established the water vapour mixing ratio there as ~ 30-35 ppm (Ignatiev et al. 1997), while more recent data suggests that the water vapor mixing ratio of the upper haze of Venus is ~ 1 ppm (Bertaux et al. 2007). The transition region between these two regimes, the upper cloud, is an active site of photochemistry and production of sulfuric acid, which occurs through the formation of SO3 from the oxidation of SO2, and subsequent reactions between SO3 and water. These reactions have been shown by Parkinson et al. (2014a, submitted) as capable of causing an order of magnitude decrease of the water vapor mixing ratio in the upper cloud and upper haze if the SO2 mixing ratio at the upper cloud base were increased by only ~20%, as the resulting high SO3 concentrations rapidly react with any available water to form sulfuric acid. The opposite is true when water is in high abundance. This is likely to have profound effects on the sulfuric acid clouds and hazes themselves, as 1) the depletion of either species will decrease the production rate of sulfuric acid and 2) the saturation vapor pressure of the cloud droplets increases with decreasing water fraction, and thus a "drying" of the clouds may result in decreased cloud thickness. In this work we will use the Venus microphysical cloud models of Gao et al. (2014) and Parkinson et al. (2014b, submitted) to simulate the sulfuric acid clouds and hazes of Venus from 40 to 100 km altitude and evaluate how their structure and particle sizes depend on the background water vapor profile and sulfuric acid production rate as determined by Parkinson et al. (2014a, submitted). We also show how they respond to transient episodes of increased/decreased SO2/H2O mixing ratios and discuss the plausibility of possible causes, such as volcanic activity.

  13. Extreme Environments Technologies for Probes to Venus and Jupiter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Balint, Tibor S.; Kolawa, Elizabeth A.; Peterson, Craig E.; Cutts, James A.; Belz, Andrea P.

    2007-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the technologies that are used to mitigate extreme environments for probes at Venus and Jupiter. The contents include: 1) Extreme environments at Venus and Jupiter; 2) In-situ missions to Venus and Jupiter (past/present/future); and 3) Approaches to mitigate conditions of extreme environments for probes with systems architectures and technologies.

  14. Current status of the PLANET-C Venus orbiter design

    Microsoft Academic Search

    N. Ishii; H. Yamakawa; S. Sawai; M. Shida; T. Hashimoto; M. Nakamura; T. Imamura; T. Abe; K. Oyama; I. Nakatani

    2004-01-01

    The ISAS (Institute of Space and Astronautical Science) working group is currently studying the feasibility of a Venus orbiter mission [Proposal Report of feasibility study of Venus Climate Orbiter (in Japanese), ISAS working group, 2001], called PLANET-C project, in which a 3 axis stabilized spacecraft will be launched in early 2008, and it will arrive at Venus in 2009. Primary

  15. Elevating Venus Observations (of the Solid Planet) from Orbit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilmore, M. S.

    2015-04-01

    Future orbital missions require enhanced communication rates, and extensive laboratory work on the spectroscopy of minerals and high temperature and the rates and composition of Venus weathering reactions.

  16. Aeolian processes on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1989-01-01

    This review assesses the potential aeolian regime on Venus as derived from spacecraft observations, laboratory simulations, and theoretical considerations. The two requirements for aeolian processes (a supply of small, loose particles and winds of sufficient strength to move them) appear to be met on Venus. Venera 9, 10, 13, and 14 images show particles considered to be sand and silt size on the surface. In addition, dust spurts (grains 5 to 50 microns in diameter) observed via lander images and inferred from the Pioneer-Venus nephalometer experiments suggest that the particles are loose and subject to movement. Although data on near surface winds are limited, measurements of 0.3 to 1.2 m/sec from the Venera lander and Pioneer-Venus probes appear to be well within the range required for sand and dust entrainment. Aeolian activity involves the interaction of the atmosphere, lithosphere, and loose particles. Thus, there is the potential for various physical and chemical weathering processes that can effect not only rates of erosion, but changes in the composition of all three components. The Venus Simulator is an apparatus used to simulate weathering under venusian conditions at full pressure (to 112 bars) and temperature (to 800 K). In one series of tests, the physical modifications of windblown particles and rock targets were assessed and it was shown that particles become abraded even when moved by gentle winds. However, little abrasion occurs on the target faces. Thus, compositional signatures for target rocks may be more indicative of the windblown particles than of the bedrock. From these and other considerations, aeolian modifications of the venusian surface may be expected to occur as weathering, erosion, transportation, and deposition of surficial materials. Depending upon global and local wind regimes, there may be distinctive sources and sinks of windblown materials. Radar imaging, especially as potentially supplied via the Magellan mission, may enable the identification of such areas on Venus.

  17. Venus Technology Plan Venus Technology Plan

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    Venus Technology Plan May 2014 #12; ii Venus Technology Plan At the Venus Exploration and strategies for Venus exploration. To achieve this goal, three major tasks were defined: (1) update the document prioritizing Goals, Objectives and Investigations for Venus Exploration: (GOI), (2) develop

  18. Venus III: The Atmosphere, Climate, Surface, Interior And Near-space Environment Of An Earth-like Planet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Fredric W.; Russell, C. T.; Satoh, T.; Svedhem, H.; Titov, D. V.

    2010-10-01

    The new knowledge that has been acquired about Venus since the publication of the books Venus I (1982) and Venus II (1997) will form the basis for a new volume, Venus III in 2013/14. Although stimulated by Venus Express, and timed to incorporate results from the Japanese Akatsuki mission, contributions from any source including theory, models, and future mission planning will be included, and authorship is open to all subject only to the usual editorial process and review. Cambridge University Press has expressed a strong interest in publishing the volume and we plan to make a formal proposal in January 2011. An essential part of this will be an outline of the likely chapters, authors, and total number of pages. We invite interested Venus scientists to propose or suggest topics for chapters and to indicate whether they would personally be interested in leading or contributing to them. Chapter proposals and enquiries or comments of any kind can be sent to any of the editors, and/or to fwt@atm.ox.ac.uk if possible before the end of December 2010. All contributions will be reviewed and incorporated into a draft contents list by the editors, with consultation as necessary to resolve any gaps, overlaps, or conflicts, and this will be circulated for approval before submission to the publisher.

  19. Chasing Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Periodically the planet Venus passes directly between Earth and the Sun, appearing as a small black dot on the Sun's disk. Since astronomers first became aware of them in 1631, these "transits of Venus" have fascinated astronomers because of their rarity and their potential to help scientists measure the solar system. The expeditions that set out to observe transits from remote locations paved the way for a new era of scientific exploration - yet never managed to unlock the transits' secrets. "Chasing Venus" tells the story of astronomers' pursuit of this phenomenon, through rare books and articles written on the subject over the last four centuries. The exhibit also marks the sixth observed transit of Venus, in June 2004.

  20. Exploring Venus.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    The Universe in the Classroom, 1985

    1985-01-01

    Presents basic information on the planet Venus answering questions on location, size, temperature, clouds, water, and daylight. A weather forecast for a typical day and revelations from radar experiments are also included. (DH)

  1. Venus Phasing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riddle, Bob

    1997-01-01

    Presents a science activity designed to introduce students to the geocentric and heliocentric models of the universe. Helps students discover why phase changes on Venus knocked Earth out of the center of the universe. (DKM)

  2. Variable Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    This is an activity about the phases of Venus and the planet’s variance in angular size as seen from Earth. Learners will use an online program such as Solar System Live to determine Venus’s distance from Earth for one half of its cycle. This activity requires access to the Solar System Update software and a computer with Internet access. This is Solar System Activity 6 in a larger resource, Space Update.

  3. Orbital Express Mission Operations Planning and Resource Management using ASPEN

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chouinard, Caroline; Knight, Russell; Jones, Grailing; Tran, Danny

    2008-01-01

    The Orbital Express satellite servicing demonstrator program is a DARPA program aimed at developing "a safe and cost-effective approach to autonomously service satellites in orbit". The system consists of: a) the Autonomous Space Transport Robotic Operations (ASTRO) vehicle, under development by Boeing Integrated Defense Systems, and b) a prototype modular next-generation serviceable satellite, NEXTSat, being developed by Ball Aerospace. Flexibility of ASPEN: a) Accommodate changes to procedures; b) Accommodate changes to daily losses and gains; c) Responsive re-planning; and d) Critical to success of mission planning Auto-Generation of activity models: a) Created plans quickly; b) Repetition/Re-use of models each day; and c) Guarantees the AML syntax. One SRP per day vs. Tactical team

  4. Near infrared imaging of the surface of Venus and implications for crustal composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, N.; Helbert, J.

    2009-04-01

    Venus Express is an ESA spacecraft orbiting Venus since April 2006. The instrument VIRTIS acquires multispectral images in the range from 0.2 to 5 m wavelength. An analysis of VIRTIS images at the wavelengths of the atmospheric window at 1.02 m shows evidence for variation of surface emissivity on the southern hemisphere [Mueller et al. 2008]. Inferred surface emissivity is correlated to some extend with morphological units identified from radar images of the NASA/JPL Magellan mission [Tanaka et al. 1997]. Alpha and Phoebe Regios are highlands mostly composed of tessera terrain, which is defined as a region strongly deformed by compressive and extensional tectonism in at least two directions. In comparison to lowland plains and other less tectonized highlands, these regions generally emit less thermal radiation, which implies lower emissivity. A recent analysis of NIR data from the Galileo fly-by in 1990 finds, that highland regions on Venus on average have a lower emissivity than lowlands [Hashimoto et al. 2008]. As a significant part of Venus highlands in the area observed by Galileo is composed of tessera, this observation is consistent with the observation of Mueller et al. [2008]. In situ measurements by the Venera and Vega landers are at most places consistent with basaltic surface composition. The hypsometry of Venus is unimodal. Inferred lava viscosity of most volcanic features is low, consistent with basaltic composition. All these observations hint towards a crust mostly composed of basalt [Basilevsky et al 1997]. However, no landing site was on tessera terrain, tessera are hypsometrically elevated and the morphology is dominated by tectonic deformation. Among other arguments this leads to the hypothesis that tessera highlands crust is more abundant in feldspar and silica, comparable to lunar highlands or continents on Earth [Nikolaeva et al., 1992]. NIR mapping supports this hypothesis, although other interpretations of the NIR data can not be ruled out. Generation of felsic crust is unlikely under the current climatic and tectonic regime on Venus. The lunar highland crust is believed to be a remnant of an magma ocean [Taylor 1974]. Enrichment in silica as in the continental crust of Earth requires recycling of water into the mantle [Campbell and Taylor 1984]. The surface of Venus is extremely dry and Venus and crustal recycling by plate tectonics does not operate at present. Any crust with felsic bulk composition had to be created during the early history of the planet. In a stratigraphic analysis tessera terrain predates all units it is in contact with [Ivanov and Head 1996]. Tessera terrain is defined by an extensive history of tectonic deformation. Assuming that tessera highlands indeed represent less dense crustal blocks created early in the history of Venus, implications arise from their persistence on the surface of Venus regarding resurfacing mechanism, crustal recycling and thermal evolution. If tessera highlands are enriched in silica relative to basalt this implies existence of a primordial ocean on Venus [Hashimoto et al. 2008]. In either case Venus would even more closely resemble the Earth-Moon system than previously assumed, making Venus an excellent subject for general studies of earth-like planets. Basilevsky, A. T.,et al. (1997), The Resurfacing History of Venus, in Venus II, pp. 1047-1084. Hashimoto, et al. (2008), Galileo Near Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (NIMS) Data Suggests Felsic Highland Crust on Venus, JGR, in press. Ivanov, M. A., et al. (1996), Tessera terrain on Venus: A survey of the global distribution, characteristics, and relation to surrounding units from Magellan data, JGR, 101, 14,861-14,908. Mueller, N., et al. (2008), Venus surface thermal emission at one micrometer in VIRTIS imaging observations - evidence for variation of crust and mantle differentiation conditions, JGR , in press. Nikolaeva, O. V., et al. (1992), Evidence on the crustal dichotomy, pp. 129-139, Venus Geology, Geochemistry, and Geophysics - Research results from the USSR. Tanaka, K. L., et al. (1997), Phy

  5. Transient Structures and Stream Interaction Regions in the Solar Wind: Results from EISCAT Interplanetary Scintillation, STEREO HI and Venus Express ASPERA-4 Measurements

    E-print Network

    Dorrian, Gareth; Davies, Jackie; Rouillard, Alexi; Fallows, Richard; Whittaker, Ian; Brown, Daniel; Harrison, Richard; Davis, Chris; Grande, Manuel; 10.1007/s11207-010-9599-z

    2012-01-01

    We discuss the detection and evolution of a complex series of transient and quasi-static solar wind structures in the days following the well-known comet 2P / Encke tail disconnection event in April 2007. The evolution of transient solar wind structures ranging in size from 106 km was characterized using one-minute time resolution observation of Interplanetary Scintillation (IPS) made using the European Incoherent SCA Tter (EISCA T) radar system. Simultaneously, the global structure and evolution of these features was characterized by the Heliospheric Imagers (HI) on the Solar TERrestrial RElations Observatory (STEREO) spacecraft, placing the IPS observations in context. Of particular interest was the observation of one transient in the slow wind apparently being swept up and entrained by a Stream Interaction Region (SIR). The SIR itself was later detected in-situ at Venus by the Analyser of Space Plasma and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) instrument on the Venus Express (VEX) spacecraft. The availability of such...

  6. VISAR: A Next Generation Inteferometric Radar for Venus Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hensley, S.; Smrekar, S.; Shaffer, S.; Paller, M.; Figueroa, H.; Freeman, A.; Hodges, R.; Walkemayer, P.

    2015-04-01

    The VERITAS Mission is a proposed mission to Venus designed to obtain high resolution imagery and topography of the surface using an X-band radar configured as a single pass radar interferometer coupled with a multispectral NIR mapping capability.

  7. Meeting Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterken, Christiaan; Aspaas, Per Pippin

    2013-06-01

    On 2-3 June 2012, the University of Tromsoe hosted a conference about the cultural and scientific history of the transits of Venus. The conference took place in Tromsoe for two very specific reasons. First and foremost, the last transit of Venus of this century lent itself to be observed on the disc of the Midnight Sun in this part of Europe during the night of 5 to 6 June 2012. Second, several Venus transit expeditions in this region were central in the global enterprise of measuring the scale of the solar system in the eighteenth century. The site of the conference was the Nordnorsk Vitensenter (Science Centre of Northern Norway), which is located at the campus of the University of Tromsoe. After the conference, participants were invited to either stay in Tromsoe until the midnight of 5-6 June, or take part in a Venus transit voyage in Finnmark, during which the historical sites Vardoe, Hammerfest, and the North Cape were to be visited. The post-conference program culminated with the participants observing the transit of Venus in or near Tromsoe, Vardoe and even from a plane near Alta. These Proceedings contain a selection of the lectures delivered on 2-3 June 2012, and also a narrative description of the transit viewing from Tromsoe, Vardoe and Alta. The title of the book, Meeting Venus, refers the title of a play by the Hungarian film director, screenwriter and opera director Istvan Szabo (1938-). The autobiographical movie Meeting Venus (1991) directed by him is based on his experience directing Tannhauser at the Paris Opera in 1984. The movie brings the story of an imaginary international opera company that encounters a never ending series of difficulties and pitfalls that symbolise the challenges of any multicultural and international endeavour. As is evident from the many papers presented in this book, Meeting Venus not only contains the epic tales of the transits of the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, it also covers the conference participants' encounter with "Venus on the Sun" in historical archives as well as face-to-face at several locations in the Troms and Finnmark counties.

  8. Venus Exploration Themes Venus Exploration Themes

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    Venus Exploration Themes May 2014 #12;ii Venus Exploration Themes Prepared as an adjunct to the three VEXAG documents: Goals, Objectives and Investigations; Roadmap; as well as Venus Technologies for distribution at the Venus Town Hall Meeting, March 2014 Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. This document

  9. Venus Atmospheric Maneuverable Platform (VAMP)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Griffin, K.; Sokol, D.; Lee, G.; Dailey, D.; Polidan, R.

    2013-12-01

    We have explored a possible new approach to Venus upper atmosphere exploration by applying recent Northrop Grumman (non-NASA) development programs to the challenges associated with Venus upper atmosphere science missions. Our concept is a low ballistic coefficient (<50 Pa), semi-buoyant aircraft that deploys prior to entering the Venus atmosphere, enters the Venus atmosphere without an aeroshell, and provides a long-lived (months to years), maneuverable vehicle capable of carrying science payloads to explore the Venus upper atmosphere. In 2012 we initiated a feasibility study for a semi-buoyant maneuverable vehicle that could operate in the upper atmosphere of Venus. In this presentation we report results from the ongoing study and plans for future analyses and prototyping to advance and refine the concept. We will discuss the overall mission architecture and concept of operations from launch through Venus arrival, orbit, entry, and atmospheric science operations. We will present a strawman concept of VAMP, including ballistic coefficient, planform area, percent buoyancy, inflation gas, wing span, vehicle mass, power supply, propulsion, materials considerations, structural elements, subsystems, and packaging. The interaction between the VAMP vehicle and the supporting orbiter will also be discussed. In this context, we will specifically focus upon four key factors impacting the design and performance of VAMP: 1. Feasibility of and options for the deployment of the vehicle in space 2. Entry into the Venus atmosphere, including descent profile, heat rate, total heat load, stagnation temperature, control, and entry into level flight 3. Characteristics of flight operations and performance in the Venus atmosphere: altitude range, latitude and longitude access, day/night performance, aircraft performance (aerodynamics, power required vs. power available, propulsion, speed, percent buoyancy), performance sensitivity to payload weight 4. Science payload accommodation, constraints, and opportunities We will discuss interdependencies of the above factors and the manner in which the VAMP strawman's characteristics affect the CONOPs and the science objectives. We will show how the these factors provide constraints as well as enable opportunities for novel long duration scientific studies of the Venus upper atmosphere that support VEXAG goals 2 and 3. We will also discuss how the VAMP platform itself can facilitate some of these science measurements.

  10. Venus Transit

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    2012-08-03

    This is an activity about the Venus Transit and how it helped astronomers determine the scale of the solar system. Learners will use measurement, ratios, and graphing to construct a model of the solar system and determine the relationship of each planet to the Sun. They will explore the scales needed to represent the size of the planets and the distances to the Sun. This activity corresponds to the NASA CONNECT video, titled Venus Transit, and has supplemental questions to support the video viewing.

  11. The VEGA Venus Balloon Experiment.

    PubMed

    Sagdeev, R Z; Linkin, V M; Blamont, J E; Preston, R A

    1986-03-21

    In June 1985, two instrumented balloons were placed in the atmosphere of Venus as part of the VEGA mission. Each balloon traveled about 30 percent of the way around the planet at a float altitude near 54 kilometers. In situ sensors measured pressure, temperature, vertical wind velocity, cloud particle backscatter, ambient light level, and frequency of lightning. A ground-based network of 20 radio antennas tracked the balloons by very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) techniques to monitor the Venus winds. The history, organization, and principal characteristics of this international balloon experiment are described. PMID:17748079

  12. Mariner Venus-Mercury 1973 Project. Volume 1: Venus and Mercury 1 Encounters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1976-01-01

    The primary mission report includes the Venus encounter and the first Mercury encounter. Plans and activities undertaken to successfully achieve the mission objectives are described. Operational activities are identified by mission operation system functions, providing a brief summary of each discipline. Spacecraft performance is summarized by subsystems.

  13. Venus, Earth, Xenon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahnle, K. J.

    2013-12-01

    Xenon has been regarded as an important goal of many proposed missions to Venus. This talk is intended to explain why. Despite its being the heaviest gas found in natural planetary atmospheres, there is more evidence that Xe escaped from Earth than for any element apart from helium: (i) Atmospheric Xe is very strongly mass fractionated (at about 4% per amu) from any known solar system source. This suggests fractionating escape that preferentially left the heavy Xe isotopes behind. (ii) Xe is underabundant compared to Kr, a lighter noble gas that is not strongly mass fractionated in air. (iii) Radiogenic Xe is strongly depleted by factors of several to ~100 compared to the quantities expected from radioactive decay of primordial solar system materials. In these respects Xe on Mars is similar to Xe on Earth, but with one key difference: Xe on Mars is readily explained by a simple process like hydrodynamic escape that acts on an initially solar or meteoritic Xe. This is not so for Earth. Earth's Xe cannot be derived by an uncontrived mass fractionating process acting on any known type of Solar System Xe. Earth is a stranger, made from different stuff than any known meteorite or Mars or even the Sun. Who else is in Earth's family? Comets? We know nothing. Father Zeus? Data from Jupiter are good enough to show that jovian Xe is not strongly mass-fractionated but not good enough to determine whether Jupiter resembles the Earth or the Sun. Sister Venus? Noble gas data from Venus are incomplete, with Kr uncertain and Xe unmeasured. Krypton was measured by several instruments on several spacecraft. The reported Kr abundances are discrepant and were once highly controversial. These discrepancies appear to have been not so much resolved as forgotten. Xenon was not detected on Venus. Upper limits were reported for the two most abundant xenon isotopes 129Xe and 132Xe. From the limited data it is not possible to tell whether Venus's affinities lie with the solar wind, or with the chondrites, with Earth, or with none of the above. Modern spacecraft mass spectrometers are at least 100-fold more sensitive to noble gases. Sending such an instrument to Venus may be the last best hope for decrypting what Earth's noble gases have been trying to tell us.

  14. The Venus environment

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1982-08-01

    Attention is given to noble gases in planetary atmospheres, the photochemistry of the stratosphere of Venus, the chemistry of metastable species in the Venusian ionosphere, the Venus ionosphere at grazing incidence of solar radiation, disappearing ionospheres on the nightside of Venus, and the observed composition of the ionosphere of Venus. Other investigations considered are concerned with the predicted electrical conductivity between 0 and 80 km in the Venusian atmosphere, sulfuric acid vapor and other cloud-related gases in the Venus atmosphere, the composition and vertical structure of the lower cloud deck on Venus, amorphous sulfur as the ultraviolet absorber on Venus, and polarization studies of the Venus UV contrasts. A description is provided of topics related to temporal variability of ultraviolet cloud features in the Venus stratosphere, zonal mean circulation at the cloud level on Venus, the influence of thermospheric winds on exospheric hydrogen on Venus, and an analysis of Venus gravity data.

  15. Spaceborne radar studies of Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Nozette, S.

    1980-01-01

    Data obtained from the Pioneer Venus radar mapper experiment are discussed. The mission was primarily developed to study the atmosphere of Venus. A highly eccentric orbit (eccentricity of 0.84, period of 24 h) was selected. The instrumentation has two operating modes: altimetry and imaging. Three parameters were measured for every radar spot size: altitude, surface roughness and radar reflectivity at a normal incidence. The measurements have been extended to a topographic map. The results suggest that the Beta region consists of two large shields and that the equatorial region is dominated by Aphrodite Terra. It also appears that the surface of Venus is very smooth and that it lacks great basins and the global plate tectonics present on earth.

  16. Observations of quasi-perpendicular propagating electromagnetic waves near the ionopause current sheet of Venus

    E-print Network

    California at Berkeley, University of

    sheet of Venus H. Y. Wei,1 C. T. Russell,1 J. T. M. Daniels,1 T. L. Zhang,2 R. J. Strangeway,1 and J. G. [1] Due to the lack of an intrinsic magnetic field at Venus, the Venus ionosphere acts of the solar wind magnetic fields into the ionosphere. The Venus Express magnetometer occasionally observes

  17. First laboratory high-temperature emissivity measurements of Venus analog measurements in the near-infrared atmospheric windows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Helbert, J.; Maturilli, A.; Ferrari, S.; Dyar, M. D.; Smrekar, S. E.

    2014-12-01

    The permanent cloud cover of Venus prohibits observation of the surface with traditional imaging techniques over most of the visible spectral range. Venus' CO2 atmosphere is transparent exclusively in small spectral windows near 1 ?m. The Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) team on the European Space Agency Venus-Express mission have recently used these windows successfully to map the southern hemisphere from orbit. VIRTIS is showing variations in surface brightness, which can be interpreted as variations in surface emissivity. Deriving surface composition from these variations is a challenging task. Comparison with laboratory analogue spectra are complicated by the fact that Venus has an average surface temperature of 730K. Mineral crystal structures and their resultant spectral signatures are notably affected by temperature, therefore any interpretations based on room temperature laboratory spectra database can be misleading. In order to support the interpretation of near-infrared data from Venus we have started an extensive measurement campaign at the Planetary Emissivity Laboratory (PEL, Institute of Planetary Research of the German Aerospace Center, Berlin). The PEL facility, which is unique in the world, allows emission measurements covering the 1 to 2 ?m wavelength range at sample temperatures of up to 770K. Conciliating the expected emissivity variation between felsic and mafic minerals with Venera and VEGA geochemical data we have started with a set of five analog samples. This set includes basalt, gneiss, granodiorite, anorthosite and hematite, thus covering the range of mineralogies. Preliminary results show significant spectral contrast, thus allowing different samples to be distinguished with only 5 spectral points and validating the use of thermal emissivity for investigating composition. This unique new dataset from PEL not only allows interpretation of the Venus Express VIRTIS data but also provide a baseline for considering new instrument designs for future Venus missions.

  18. Pioneer Mars surface penetrator mission. Mission analysis and orbiter design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1974-01-01

    The Mars Surface Penetrator mission was designed to provide a capability for multiple and diverse subsurface science measurements at a low cost. Equipment required to adapt the Pioneer Venus spacecraft for the Mars mission is described showing minor modifications to hardware. Analysis and design topics which are similar and/or identical to the Pioneer Venus program are briefly discussed.

  19. Hot Flow Anomalies at Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Collinson, G. A.; Sibeck, David Gary; Boardsen, Scott A.; Moore, Tom; Barabash, S.; Masters, A.; Shane, N.; Slavin, J.A.; Coates, A.J.; Zhang, T. L.; Sarantos, M.

    2012-01-01

    We present a multi-instrument study of a hot flow anomaly (HFA) observed by the Venus Express spacecraft in the Venusian foreshock, on 22 March 2008, incorporating both Venus Express Magnetometer and Analyzer of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA) plasma observations. Centered on an interplanetary magnetic field discontinuity with inward convective motional electric fields on both sides, with a decreased core field strength, ion observations consistent with a flow deflection, and bounded by compressive heated edges, the properties of this event are consistent with those of HFAs observed at other planets within the solar system.

  20. Venus reconsidered.

    PubMed

    Kaula, W M

    1995-12-01

    The Magellan imagery shows that Venus has a crater abundance equivalent to a surface age of 300 million to 500 million years and a crater distribution close to random. Hence, the tectonics of Venus must be quiescent compared to those of Earth in the last few 100 million years. The main debate is whether the decline in tectonic activity on Venus is closer to monotonic or episodic, with enhanced tectonism and volcanism yet to come. The former hypothesis implies that most radioactive heat sources have been differentiated upward; the latter, that they have remained at depth. The low level of activity in the last few 100 million years inferred from imagery favors the monotonic hypothesis; some chemical evidence, particularly the low abundance of radiogenic argon, favors the episodic. A problem for both hypotheses is the rapid decline of thermal and tectonic activity some 300 million to 500 million years ago. The nature of the convective instabilities that caused the decline, and their propagation, are unclear. PMID:7491490

  1. Magellan mission summary

    Microsoft Academic Search

    R. S. Saunders; A. J. Spear; P. C. Allin; R. S. Austin; A. L. Berman; R. C. Chandlee; J. Clark; A. V. Decharon; E. M. de Jong; D. G. Griffith; J. M. Gunn; S. Hensley; W. T. K. Johnson; C. E. Kirby; K. S. Leung; D. T. Lyons; G. A. Michaels; J. Miller; R. B. Morris; A. D. Morrison; R. G. Piereson; J. F. Scott; S. J. Shaffer; J. P. Slonski; E. R. Stofan; T. W. Thompson; S. D. Wall

    1992-01-01

    Magellan started mapping the planet Venus on September 15, 1990, and after one cycle (one Venus day or 243 earth days) had mapped 84 percent of the planet's surface. This returned an image data volume greater than all past planetary missions combined. Spacecraft problems were experienced in flight. Changes in operational procedures and reprogramming of onboard computers minimized the amount

  2. Hot Flow Anomalies at Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collinson, G. A.; Sibeck, D. G.; Masters, A.; Shane, N.; Slavin, J. A.; Coates, A. J.; Zhang, T.; Boardsen, S. A.; Moore, T. E.; Barabash, S.

    2011-12-01

    We present a multi-instrument study of a Hot Flow Anomaly (HFA) observed by the Venus Express spacecraft in the Venutian foreshock, expanding on an initial study by Slavin et al [2009] that employed magnetometer observations of an HFA-like event during the flyby of NASA's Messenger spacecraft. Whilst the Messenger events were indicative of an HFA, they were unable to demonstrate the unambiguous signatures of plasma heating or deflection due to the paucity of data. We examine the complex internal structure of a Venutian HFA on the 22nd of March 2008, incorporating both Venus Express magnetometer and ASPERA plasma observations to demonstrate the presence of plasma heating within one such event. Centered on an interplanetary discontinuity and bounded by shock, the properties of this event are consistent with those of HFA's observed at other planets within the Solar System. Finally, we present a discussion of the implications of an HFA on the planet Venus.

  3. Interplanetary mission planning

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1971-01-01

    A long range plan for solar system exploration is presented. The subjects discussed are: (1) science payload for first Jupiter orbiters, (2) Mercury orbiter mission study, (3) preliminary analysis of Uranus/Neptune entry probes for Grand Tour Missions, (4) comet rendezvous mission study, (5) a survey of interstellar missions, (6) a survey of candidate missions to explore rings of Saturn, and (7) preliminary analysis of Venus orbit radar missions.

  4. System Analysis and Orbit Design for PLANET-C Venus Climate Orbiter

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Nobuaki Ishii; Sumitaka Tachikawa; Nobukatsu Okuizumi; Tomoaki Toda; Yukio Kamata; Tomoko Hayashiyama; Shinichiro Narita; Junichiro Nakatsuka; Takayuki Yamamoto; Masato Nakamura

    The Venus climate orbiter mission, PLANET-C, is aiming at understanding of the super rotational motion of the Venus atmosphere and differences from the earth climate and environment. The spacecraft is scheduled to be sent to Venus in 2010. Mechanical environments and electrical functions using proto-type components have been conducted, and currently mechanical and electrical functions of flight components are examined

  5. The Plains of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharpton, V. L.

    2013-12-01

    Volcanic plains units of various types comprise at least 80% of the surface of Venus. Though devoid of topographic splendor and, therefore often overlooked, these plains units house a spectacular array of volcanic, tectonic, and impact features. Here I propose that the plains hold the keys to understanding the resurfacing history of Venus and resolving the global stratigraphy debate. The quasi-random distribution of impact craters and the small number that have been conspicuously modified from the outside by plains-forming volcanism have led some to propose that Venus was catastrophically resurfaced around 725×375 Ma with little volcanism since. Challenges, however, hinge on interpretations of certain morphological characteristics of impact craters: For instance, Venusian impact craters exhibit either radar dark (smooth) floor deposits or bright, blocky floors. Bright floor craters (BFC) are typically 100-400 m deeper than dark floor craters (DFC). Furthermore, all 58 impact craters with ephemeral bright ejecta rays and/or distal parabolic ejecta patterns have bright floor deposits. This suggests that BFCs are younger, on average, than DFCs. These observations suggest that DFCs could be partially filled with lava during plains emplacement and, therefore, are not strictly younger than the plains units as widely held. Because the DFC group comprises ~80% of the total crater population on Venus the recalculated emplacement age of the plains would be ~145 Ma if DFCs are indeed volcanically modified during plains formation. Improved image and topographic data are required to measure stratigraphic and morphometric relationships and resolve this issue. Plains units are also home to an abundant and diverse set of volcanic features including steep-sided domes, shield fields, isolated volcanoes, collapse features and lava channels, some of which extend for 1000s of kilometers. The inferred viscosity range of plains-forming lavas, therefore, is immense, ranging from the extremely fluid flows (i.e., channel formers), to viscous, possibly felsic lavas of steep-sided domes. Wrinkle ridges deform many plains units and this has been taken to indicate that these ridges essentially form an early stratigraphic marker that limits subsequent volcanism to a minimum. However, subtle backscatter variations within many ridged plains units suggest (but do not prove) that some plains volcanism continued well after local ridge deformation ended. Furthermore, many of volcanic sources show little, if any, indications of tectonic modification and detailed analyses have concluded that resurfacing rates could be similar to those on Earth. Improving constraints on the rates and styles of volcanism within the plains could lend valuable insights into the evolution of Venus's internal heat budget and the transition from thin-lid to thick-lid tectonic regimes. Improved spatial and radiometric resolution of radar images would greatly improve abilities to construct the complex local stratigraphy of ridged plains. Constraining the resurfacing history of Venus is central to understanding how Earth-sized planets evolve and whether or not their evolutionary pathways lead to habitability. This goal can only be adequately addressed if broad coverage is added to the implementation strategies of any future mapping missions to Venus.

  6. Venus Exploration Themes: February 2014 Venus Exploration Themes

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    1 Venus Exploration Themes: February 2014 Venus Exploration Themes February 2014 #12;2 Venus and Investigations; Roadmap; as well as Venus Technologies for distribution at Venus Town Hall Meeting at LPSC, March 2014. This document preserves extracts from the March 2012 Venus Exploration Goals and Objectives

  7. Atmospheric tides on Venus. III - The planetary boundary layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dobrovolskis, A. R.

    1983-10-01

    Diurnal solar heating of Venus' surface produces variable temperatures, winds, and pressure gradients within a shallow layer at the bottom of the atmosphere. The corresponding asymmetric mass distribution experiences a tidal torque tending to maintain Venus' slow retrograde rotation. It is shown that including viscosity in the boundary layer does not materially affect the balance of torques. On the other hand, friction between the air and ground can reduce the predicted wind speeds from about 5 to about 1 m/sec in the lower atmosphere, more consistent with the observations from Venus landers and descent probes. Implications for aeolian activity on Venus' surface and for future missions are discussed.

  8. High Temperature, Wireless Seismometer Sensor for Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponchak, George E.; Scardelletti, Maximilian C.; Taylor, Brandt; Beard, Steve; Meredith, Roger D.; Beheim, Glenn M.; Hunter Gary W.; Kiefer, Walter S.

    2012-01-01

    Space agency mission plans state the need to measure the seismic activity on Venus. Because of the high temperature on Venus (462? C average surface temperature) and the difficulty in placing and wiring multiple sensors using robots, a high temperature, wireless sensor using a wide bandgap semiconductor is an attractive option. This paper presents the description and proof of concept measurements of a high temperature, wireless seismometer sensor for Venus. A variation in inductance of a coil caused by the movement of an aluminum probe held in the coil and attached to a balanced leaf-spring seismometer causes a variation of 700 Hz in the transmitted signal from the oscillator/sensor system at 426? C. This result indicates that the concept may be used on Venus.

  9. High Altitude Venus Operations Concept Trajectory Design, Modeling and Simulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lugo, Rafael A.; Ozoroski, Thomas A.; Van Norman, John W.; Arney, Dale C.; Dec, John A.; Jones, Christopher A.; Zumwalt, Carlie H.

    2015-01-01

    A trajectory design and analysis that describes aerocapture, entry, descent, and inflation of manned and unmanned High Altitude Venus Operation Concept (HAVOC) lighter-than-air missions is presented. Mission motivation, concept of operations, and notional entry vehicle designs are presented. The initial trajectory design space is analyzed and discussed before investigating specific trajectories that are deemed representative of a feasible Venus mission. Under the project assumptions, while the high-mass crewed mission will require further research into aerodynamic decelerator technology, it was determined that the unmanned robotic mission is feasible using current technology.

  10. Hinode Views the 2012 Venus Transit - Duration: 8 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    On June 5, 2012, Hinode captured these stunning views of the transit of Venus -- the last instance of this rare phenomenon until 2117. Hinode is a joint JAXA/NASA mission to study the connections o...

  11. Hinode Views the Transit of Venus - Duration: 48 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    On June 5, 2012, Hinode captured this stunning view of the transit of Venus -- the last instance of this rare phenomenon until 2117. Hinode is a joint JAXA/NASA mission to study the connections of ...

  12. VENUS CLOUD TOPS VIEWED BY HUBBLE

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This is a NASA Hubble Space Telescope ultraviolet-light image of the planet Venus, taken on January 24 1995, when Venus was at a distance of 70.6 million miles (113.6 million kilometers) from Earth. Venus is covered with clouds made of sulfuric acid, rather than the water-vapor clouds found on Earth. These clouds permanently shroud Venus' volcanic surface, which has been radar mapped by spacecraft and from Earth-based telescope. At ultraviolet wavelengths cloud patterns become distinctive. In particular, a horizontal 'Y'-shaped cloud feature is visible near the equator. Similar features were seen from Mariner 10, Pioneer Venus, and Galileo spacecrafts. This global feature might indicate atmospheric waves, analogous to high and low pressure cells on Earth. Bright clouds toward Venus' poles appear to follow latitude lines. The polar regions are bright, possibly showing a haze of small particles overlying the main clouds. The dark regions show the location of enhanced sulfur dioxide near the cloud tops. From previous missions, astronomers know that such features travel east to west along with the Venus' prevailing winds, to make a complete circuit around the planet in four days. Because Venus is closer to the Sun than Earth, the planet appears to go through phases, like the Moon. When Venus swings close to Earth the planet's disk appears to grow in size, but changes from a full disk to a crescent. The image was taken with the Wide Field Planetary Camera-2, in PC mode. False color has been used enhance cloud features. Credit: L. Esposito (University of Colorado, Boulder), and NASA

  13. A sporadic layer in the Venus lower ionosphere of meteoric origin

    Microsoft Academic Search

    M. Pätzold; S. Tellmann; B. Häusler; M. K. Bird; G. L. Tyler; A. A. Christou; P. Withers

    2009-01-01

    The Venus Express Radio Science (VeRa) experiment aboard Venus Express has detected, by means of radio occultation, distinct, low-lying layers of electron density below the base (115 km altitude) of the ionosphere of Venus. A plausible origin of these lowest layers is ionization by the influx of meteoroids into the atmosphere. The layers appeared only occasionally during the 2006 and

  14. A sporadic layer in the Venus lower ionosphere of meteoric origin M. Patzold,1

    E-print Network

    Mendillo, Michael

    A sporadic layer in the Venus lower ionosphere of meteoric origin M. Pa¨tzold,1 S. Tellmann,1 B. Ha October 2008; accepted 29 October 2008; published 12 March 2009. [1] The Venus Express Radio Science (VeRa) experiment aboard Venus Express has detected, by means of radio occultation, distinct, low-lying layers

  15. High Temperature Mechanisms for Venus Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Jerri; Narine, Roop; Kumar, Nishant; Singh, Sase; Gorevan, Steven

    Future Venus missions, including New Frontiers Venus In-Situ Explorer and three Flagship Missions - Venus Geophysical Network, Venus Mobile Explorer and Venus Surface Sample Return all focus on searching for evidence of past climate change both on the surface and in the atmospheric composition as well as in the interior dynamics of the planet. In order to achieve these goals and objectives, many key technologies need to be developed for the Venus extreme environment. These key technologies include sample acquisition systems and other high-temperature mechanisms and mobility systems capable of extended operation when directly exposed to the Venus surface or lower atmosphere environment. Honeybee Robotics has developed two types of high temperature motors, the materials and components in both motors were selected based on the requirement to survive temperatures above a minimum of 460° C, at earth atmosphere. The prototype Switched Reluctance Motor (SRM) has been operated non-continuously for over 20 hours at Venus-like conditions (460° C temperature, mostly CO2 gas environment) and it remains functional. A drilling system, actuated by two SRMs was tested in Venus-like conditions, 460° C temperature and mostly CO2 gas environment, for more than 15 hours. The drill successfully completed three tests by drilling into chalk up to 6 inches deep in each test. A first generation Brushless DC (BLDC) Motor and high temperature resolver were also tested and the feasibility of the designs was demonstrated by the extended operation of both devices under Venus-like condition. Further development of the BLDC motor and resolver continues and these devices will, ultimately, be integrated into the development of a high temperature sample acquisition scoop and high temperature joint (awarded SBIR Phase II in October, 2007). Both the SR and BLDC motors will undergo extensive testing at Venus temperature and pressure (TRL6) and are expected to be mission ready before the next New Frontiers AO release. Scalable high temperature motor, resolver and bearing developments allow for creation of long lasting sample acquisition systems, booms, robot arms and even mobility systems that operate outside of an environment-controlled landed platform on the surface of Venus. The SR and BLDC motors are no longer expected to limit the life of Venus surface operations. With the accompanying high temperature bearing and other mechanisms development, surface operations will be limited only by available power. Therefore, the motor and resolver's capability to survive for hours (and potentially longer) in the environment is a major benefit to future Venus science missions and they also allow time for communication ground loops to optimize sample target selection and the possibility for acquiring multiple samples from the surface. The extreme temperature motors, resolver and other high temperature mechanisms therefore revolutionize the exploration of Venus.

  16. Venus Aerobot Surface Science Imaging System (VASSIS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1999-01-01

    The VASSIS task was to design and develop an imaging system and container for operation above the surface of Venus in preparation for a Discovery-class mission involving a Venus aerobot balloon. The technical goals of the effort were to: a) evaluate the possible nadir-viewed surface image quality as a function of wavelength and altitude in the Venus lower atmosphere, b) design a pressure vessel to contain the imager and supporting electronics that will meet the environmental requirements of the VASSIS mission, c) design and build a prototype imaging system including an Active-Pixel Sensor camera head and VASSIS-like optics that will meet the science requirements. The VASSIS science team developed a set of science requirements for the imaging system upon which the development work of this task was based.

  17. Gallium Nitride high temperature electronics for Venus 90-day Lander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frampton, Robert; Peltz, Leora; Rubin, Seymour

    2008-09-01

    NASA Science exploration Roadmap includes a "Venus Mobile Lander" mission to operate on the surface of Venus for at least 90 days. Venus Mobile Lander will explore Venus surface as either an aerial vehicle or rover for several months. Previous missions to Venus operated for less than 2 hours. Electronics available today is not capable of supporting design of spacecraft avionics, power systems, or science instruments to operate in the Venus surface environment for 90 days. Thus this long duration mission will spawn a technology development program that can support science instrument and spacecraft design to meet mission requirements. Boeing, together with HRL Laboratory, is developing high temperature electronics for the Venus environment (480 Celsius, 90 bars carbon dioxide atmosphere) using the gallium nitride technology. Examples from our recent validation tests in harsh environments illustrate the performance of the electronic components and modules. In addition to the GaN-based semiconductor material, the characteristics, reliability and viability of the electronics is affected by constituent materials (metallization, dielectric layers) and by the packaging (die attach, wire bonding).

  18. Systems design study of the Pioneer Venus spacecraft. Volume 3. Specifications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    Pioneer Venus spacecraft performance requirements are presented. The specifications include: (1) Design criteria and performance requirements for the Pioneer Venus spacecraft systems and subsystems for a 1978 multiprobe mission and a 1978 orbiter mission, spacecraft system interface, and scientific instrument integration.

  19. ABSTRACTS FOR THE VENUS GEOSCIENCE TUTORIAL AND VENUS

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    ABSTRACTS FOR THE VENUS GEOSCIENCE TUTORIAL AND VENUS GEOLOGIC MAPPING WORKSHOP Flagstaff, Arizona Administration #12;· ABSTRACTS FOR THE VENUS GEOSCIENCE TUTORIAL AND VENUS GEOLOGIC MAPPING WORKSHOP Flagstaff. Cover: Radar image of Maxwell Montes, Venus. (Courtesy Arecibo Observatory) #12;PREFACE This volume

  20. Mesospheric vertical thermal structure and winds on Venus from HHSMT CO spectral-line observations

    E-print Network

    M. Rengel; P. Hartogh; C. Jarchow

    2008-09-16

    We report vertical thermal structure and wind velocities in the Venusian mesosphere retrieved from carbon monoxide (12CO J=2-1 and 13CO J=2-1) spectral line observations obtained with the Heinrich Hertz Submillimeter Telescope (HHSMT). We observed the mesosphere of Venus from two days after the second Messenger flyby of Venus (on June 5 2007 at 23:10 UTC) during five days. Day-to-day and day-to-night temperature variations and short-term fluctuations of the mesospheric zonal flow were evident in our data. The extensive layer of warm air detected recently by SPICAV at 90 - to 100 km altitude is also detected in the temperature profiles reported here. These data were part of a coordinated ground-based Venus observational campaign in support of the ESA Venus Express mission. Furthermore, this study attempts to cross-calibrate space- and ground-based observations, to constrain radiative transfer and retrieval algorithms for planetary atmospheres, and to contribute to a more thorough understanding of the global patterns of circulation of the Venusian atmosphere.

  1. The Atmosphere and Climate of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bullock, M. A.; Grinspoon, D. H.

    Venus lies just sunward of the inner edge of the Sun's habitable zone. Liquid water is not stable. Like Earth and Mars, Venus probably accreted at least an ocean's worth of water, although there are alternative scenarios. The loss of this water led to the massive, dry CO2 atmosphere, extensive H2SO4 clouds (at least some of the time), and an intense CO2 greenhouse effect. This chapter describes the current understanding of Venus' atmosphere, established from the data of dozens of spacecraft and atmospheric probe missions since 1962, and by telescopic observations since the nineteenth century. Theoretical work to model the temperature, chemistry, and circulation of Venus' atmosphere is largely based on analogous models developed in the Earth sciences. We discuss the data and modeling used to understand the temperature structure of the atmosphere, as well as its composition, cloud structure, and general circulation. We address what is known and theorized about the origin and early evolution of Venus' atmosphere. It is widely understood that Venus' dense CO2 atmosphere is the ultimate result of the loss of an ocean to space, but the timing of major transitions in Venus' climate is very poorly constrained by the available data. At present, the bright clouds allow only 20% of the sunlight to drive the energy balance and therefore determine conditions at Venus' surface. Like Earth and Mars, differential heating between the equator and poles drives the atmospheric circulation. Condensable species in the atmosphere create clouds and hazes that drive feedbacks that alter radiative forcing. Also in common with Earth and Mars, the loss of light, volatile elements to space produces long-term changes in composition and chemistry. As on Earth, geologic processes are most likely modifying the atmosphere and clouds by injecting gases from volcanos as well as directly through chemical reactions with the surface. The sensitivity of Venus' atmospheric energy balance is quantified in this chapter in terms of the initial forcing due to a perturbation, radiative response, and indirect responses, which are feedbacks — either positive or negative. When applied to one Venus climate model, we found that the albedo-radiative feedback is more important than greenhouse forcing for small changes in atmospheric H2O and SO2. An increase in these gases cools the planet by making the clouds brighter. On geologic timescales the reaction of some atmospheric species (SO2, CO, OCS, S, H2O, H2S, HCl, HF) with surface minerals could cause significant changes in atmospheric composition. Laboratory data and thermochemical modeling have been important for showing that atmospheric SO2 would be depleted in ~10 m.y. if carbonates are available at the surface. Without replenishment, the clouds would disappear. Alternatively, the oxidation of pyrite could add SO2 to the atmosphere while producing stable Fe oxides at the surface. The correlation of near-infrared high emissivity (dark) surface features with three young, large volcanos on Venus is strong evidence for recent volcanic activity at these sites, certainly over the timescale necessary to support the clouds. We address the nature of heterogeneous reactions with the surface and the implications for climate change on Venus. Chemical and mineralogical signatures of past climates must exist at the surface and below, so in situ experiments on the composition of surface layers are vital for reconstructing Venus' past climate. Many of the most Earth-like planets found around other stars will probably resemble Venus or a younger version of Venus. We finish the chapter with discussing what Venus can tell us about life in the universe, since it is an example of a planetary climate rendered uninhabitable. It also resembles our world's likely future. As with the climate history of Venus, however, the timing of predictable climate transitions on the Earth is poorly constrained by the data.

  2. Scaling Laws for Pulsed Electric Propulsion with Application to the Pluto Express Mission

    E-print Network

    Choueiri, Edgar

    propulsion systems by being Support from NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Air Force OfficeScaling Laws for Pulsed Electric Propulsion with Application to the Pluto Express Mission J.K. Ziemer , E.Y. Choueiri and R.G. Jahn§ Electric Propulsion and Plasma Dynamics Laboratory Princeton

  3. Roadmap for Venus Exploration Roadmap for Venus Exploration

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    Roadmap for Venus Exploration May 2014 #12;ii Roadmap for Venus Exploration At the VEXAG meeting in November 2013, it was resolved to update the scientific priorities and strategies for Venus exploration. To achieve this goal

  4. Planetary and Space Science 56 (2008) 802806 Ionospheric photoelectrons at Venus: Initial observations by

    E-print Network

    California at Berkeley, University of

    2008-01-01

    Planetary and Space Science 56 (2008) 802­806 Ionospheric photoelectrons at Venus: Initial in the Venus atmosphere by solar helium 30.4 nm photons. The detection was by the Analyzer of Space Plasma and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) Electron Spectrometer (ELS) on the Venus Express (VEx) European Space Agency (ESA

  5. Gravity waves in the upper atmosphere of Venus revealed by CO2 nonlocal thermodynamic equilibrium emissions

    E-print Network

    Garcia, Raphaël

    Gravity waves in the upper atmosphere of Venus revealed by CO2 nonlocal thermodynamic equilibrium capabilities of the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer- Mapper (VIRTIS-M) onboard Venus Express in the thermosphere of Venus. These emissions with a wavelength of 4.3 mm originate from the 110­140 km altitude range

  6. Interplanetary coronal mass ejection influence on high energy pick-up ions at Venus

    E-print Network

    California at Berkeley, University of

    Interplanetary coronal mass ejection influence on high energy pick-up ions at Venus T.R. McEnulty a Available online 10 August 2010 Keywords: Venus Ion escape Space weather ICME a b s t r a c t We have used the ion mass analyzer (IMA) and magnetometer (MAG) on Venus Express (VEX) to study escaping O+ during

  7. System design of the Pioneer Venus spacecraft. Volume 1: Executive summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dorfman, S. D.

    1973-01-01

    The NASA Ames Research Center Pioneer Venus Project objective is to conduct scientific investigations of the planet Venus using spin stabilized spacecraft. The defined approach to accomplish this goal is to implement a multiprobe spacecraft mission and an orbiter spacecraft mission. Candidate launch vehicles for the Pioneer Venus missions were the Thor/Delta and Atlas/Centaur. The multiprobe spacecraft consists of a probe bus, one large probe, and three small probes. The probes are designed to survive to the surface of Venus, and to make in situ measurements of the Venusian atmosphere; the probe bus enters the atmosphere and makes scientific measurements until it burns out. The orbiter mission uses a spacecraft designed to orbit Venus for 225 days with an orbit period of about 24 hours (h). The probe bus and orbiter designs are to use a common spacecraft bus.

  8. Synoptic Regional-scale Air Temperature Fields in the Venusian Mesosphere as Observed by Venus Express VIRTIS-M

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grassi, Davide; Politi, Romolo; Ignatiev, Nikolai; Plainaki, Christina; Lebonnois, Sèbastien; Wolkenberg, Paulina; Montabone, Luca; Migliorini, Alessandra; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Drossart, Pierre

    2014-05-01

    The recent reprocessing of the entire night-time VEX VIRTIS-M dataset according a full Bayesian method (Grassi et al., 2013, submitted) has eventually allowed the production of large scale synoptic air temperature fields in the Venusian Mesosphere from the mosaicking of several cubes acquired during a given orbit. While average fields as a function of latitude and local time suggest a semi-diurnal tide dominating at mid-latitudes and a diurnal tide dominating at high latitudes, synoptic fields reveals a much more complex picture. At the lowest level probed by VIRTIS-M (98.4 mbar, about 65 km above the surface), the cold collar region appears rich in small scale features. Namely, long (exceeding 90° in longitude) but narrow (less than 5° in latitude) patterns of alternate warm and cold air, apparently originating from the extremes of polar dipole, are over posed to a general trend that shows a minimum in the early hours after midnight. Similar patterns persist also at higher altitude (34.0 mbar, about 70 km above the surface), but their shapes appear more blurred. Noticeably, relative air temperature maxima and minima are anticorrelated at the two levels of 98.4 and 34.0 for the small scale features, while a similar anticorrelation does not hold true in more smoothed areas. Moving to even higher altitude than 70 km, the high-frequency patterns become less prominent but are still seen up to 1.4 mbar level (84.5 km) while large scale features seen just above the cloud level (dipole and cold collar) have completely disappeared. In general, we confirm that the region of the Venus South presents general trends well distinct at different levels between 65 and 85 km, but hosts small scale perturbations extended over at least 20 km in latitude, likely induced by dynamical phenomena.

  9. The Planet Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    This resource covers early and modern views of Venus; the general features of Venus; its cloud layer, including high velocity winds, the absence of water vapor, and the different wavelengths used to analyze the Venusian atmosphere; properties of the Venusian atmosphere; a runaway greenhouse effect (where oceans would boil and rocks would sublimate), caused by radiation trapping by greenhouse gases; surface features of Venus, including different hemispheric views, mountains, volcanoes, lava flows, rift valleys and meteor craters; and a comparison of Venus and Earth.

  10. Methods for the analysis of data from the Planetary Fourier Spectrometer on the Mars Express Mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Davide Grassi; N. I. Ignatiev; L. V. Zasova; A. Maturilli; V. Formisano; G. A. Bianchini; M. Giuranna

    2005-01-01

    This work presents an algorithm for the scientific analysis of individual calibrated measurements from the Planetary Fourier spectrometer (PFS).The instrument, included in the scientific payload of the ESA Mars Express mission to Mars, acquires spectra in the range between 250 and 8200cm?1, with a sampling step of ?1cm?1 and an effective resolution of ?2cm?1. The observed radiance depends on several

  11. The Planetary Fourier Spectrometer (PFS) onboard the European Mars Express mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    V. Formisanoa; F. Angrilli; G. Arnold; S. Atreya; G. Bianchini; D. Biondi; A. Blanco; M. I. Blecka; A. Coradini; L. Colangeli; A. Ekonomov; F. Esposito; S. Fonti; M. Giuranna; D. Grassi; V. Gnedykh; A. Grigoriev; G. Hansen; H. Hirsh; I. Khatuntsev; A. Kiselev; N. Ignatiev; A. Jurewicz; E. Lellouch; J. Lopez Moreno; A. Marten; A. Mattana; A. Maturilli; E. Mencarelli; M. Michalska; V. Moroz; B. Moshkin; F. Nespoli; Y. Nikolsky; R. Orfei; P. Orleanski; V. Orofino; E. Palomba; D. Patsaev; G. Piccioni; M. Rataj; R. Rodrigo; J. Rodriguez; M. Rossi; B. Saggin; D. Titov; L. Zasova

    2005-01-01

    The Planetary Fourier Spectrometer (PFS) for the Mars Express mission is an infrared spectrometer optimised for atmospheric studies. This instrument has a short wave (SW) channel that covers the spectral range from 1700 to 8200.0cm-1 (1.2–5.5?m) and a long-wave (LW) channel that covers 250–1700cm-1 (5.5–45?m). Both channels have a uniform spectral resolution of 1.3cm-1. The instrument field of view FOV

  12. Far ultraviolet remote sensing of Venus and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paxton, Larry J.; Anderson, Donald E.

    1992-01-01

    The development of UV spectroscopy and focus on Venus and Mars is reviewed, with an overview of optical aeronomy and how UV emission features are modeled. The missions to Mars and Venus are presented, with emphasis on UV instrumentation. The history, science, and utility of HI 1216, OI 1304, CO fourth positive band system, and the CI 1561 and 1657 features are reviewed, along with a discussion of future research directions.

  13. Operation scenario of PLANET-C: Venus Climate Orbiter (AKATSUKI)

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Shinichiro Narita; Yasuhiro Kawakatsu; Toshihiro Kurii; Takeshi Yoshizawa; Nobuaki Ishii; Masato Nakamura

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents, the operations scenario, specifically the initial phase operation, of the Attitude and Orbit Control System (AOCS) of PLANET-C: Venus Climate Orbiter Mission “AKATSUKI”. AKATSUKI is the first exploration program from Japan to Earth's inferior planetary neighbor, Venus, and will be launched by an H-IIA vehicle on May 18th 2010 (Japan Standard Time: JST) from Kagoshima Space Center.

  14. Venus: Geochemical conclusions from the Magellan data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, J. A.

    1992-01-01

    Though the Magellan mission was not designed to collect geochemical or petrological information, it has done so nonetheless. Since the time of the Pioneer Venus mission it has been known that high-altitude (greater than 2.5-5 km) mountainous areas on Venus exhibit anomalously low radiothermal emissivity (e less than 0.6). Magellan has greatly refined and extended these observations. The low emissivity requires surface material in the uplands to have a mineralogical composition that gives it a high bulk dielectric constant, greater than 20. The dielectric constant of dry terrestrial volcanic rocks seldom exceeds 7. The high-dielectric character of high-altitude surface material cannot be a primary property of the local volcanic rock, because there is no reason why rock having the required special mineralogy would erupt only at high altitudes. Therefore it is a secondary property; the primary Venus rock has reacted with the atmosphere to form a mineralogically different surface layer, and the secondary minerals formed are controlled by the ambient temperature, which decreases with altitude on Venus. A further investigation of venusian mineralogy is presented.

  15. The abundance and vertical distribution of the unknown ultraviolet absorber in the venusian atmosphere from analysis of Venus Monitoring Camera images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molaverdikhani, Karan; McGouldrick, Kevin; Esposito, Larry W.

    2012-02-01

    Observations of Venus using the ultraviolet filter of the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) on ESA's Venus Express Spacecraft (VEX) provide the best opportunity for study of the spatial and temporal distribution of the venusian unknown ultraviolet absorber since the Pioneer Venus (PV) mission. We compare the results of two sets of 125 radiative transfer models of the upper atmosphere of Venus to each pixel in a subset of VMC UV channel images. We use a quantitative best fit criterion based upon the notion that the distribution of the unknown absorber should be independent of the illumination and observing geometry. We use the product of the cosines of the incidence and emission angles and search for absorber distributions that are uncorrelated with this geometric parameter, finding that two models can describe the vertical distribution of the unknown absorber. One model is a well-mixed vertical profile above a pressure level of roughly 120 mb (˜63 km). This is consistent with the altitude of photochemical formation of sulfuric acid. The second model describes it as a thin layer of pure UV absorber at a pressure level roughly around 24 mb (˜71 km) and this altitude is consistent with the top of upper cloud deck. We find that the average abundance of unknown absorber in the equatorial region is 0.21 ± 0.04 optical depth and it decreases in the polar region to 0.08 ± 0.05 optical depth at 365 nm.

  16. Hybrid modelling studies of solar wind interactions at Venus and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jarvinen, R.; Kallio, E.; Dyadechkin, S.; Wedlund, C. Simon; Alho, M.

    2013-09-01

    We present hybrid modelling of solar wind interactions of unmagnetized Solar System bodies and, more specifically, we discuss the solar wind induced ion escape and the structure of induced magnetospheres at Venus and at Mars. The modelling work is based on the HYB hybrid simulation model family, which has been developed for over a decade at the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) and has been used to study plasma environments of unmagnetized and weakly magnetized celestial objects. In the hybrid approach ions are treated as particles moving under the Lorentz force and self-consistently coupled to the electric and magnetic field via Maxwell's equations while electrons form a massless, charge-neutralizing fluid. Especially, the global HYB hybrid simulations have been used to interpret in situ observations made by the ASPERA plasma instruments on the Mars Express and the Venus Express missions. We discuss the recent results of our hybrid simulation studies of the solar wind interaction with Venus and Mars as well as the newest developments of our hybrid simulation model.

  17. Atmosphere/mantle coupling and feedbacks on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillmann, Cedric; Tackley, Paul

    2014-06-01

    We investigate the coupled evolution of the atmosphere and mantle on Venus. Here we focus on mechanisms that deplete or replenish the atmosphere: atmospheric escape to space and volcanic degassing of the mantle. These processes are linked to obtain a coupled model of mantle convection and atmospheric evolution, including feedback of the atmosphere on the mantle via the surface temperature. During early atmospheric evolution, hydrodynamic escape is dominant, while for later evolution we focus on nonthermal escape, as observed by the Analyzer of Space Plasma and Energetic Atoms instrument on the Venus Express Mission. The atmosphere is replenished by volcanic degassing from the mantle, using mantle convection simulations based on those of Armann and Tackley [2012], and include episodic lithospheric overturn. The evolving surface temperature is calculated from the amount of CO2 and water in the atmosphere using a gray radiative-convective atmosphere model. This surface temperature in turn acts as a boundary condition for the mantle convection model. We obtain a Venus-like behavior (episodic lid) for the solid planet and an atmospheric evolution leading to the present conditions. CO2 pressure is unlikely to vary much over the history of the planet, with only a 0.25-20% postmagma-ocean buildup. In contrast, atmospheric water vapor pressure is strongly sensitive to volcanic activity, leading to variations in surface temperatures of up to 200 K, which have an effect on volcanic activity and mantle convection. Low surface temperatures trigger a mobile lid regime that stops once surface temperatures rise again, making way to stagnant lid convection that insulates the mantle.

  18. Volcanoes on Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Visitors can read about the characteristics of volcanism on Venus and how it differs from volcanism on Earth. A map showing the locations and types of volcanic structures on the surface of Venus is provided, along with links to other related topics.

  19. The Nine Planets: Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Bill Arnett

    This page contains details about the planet Venus. Information includes planet mass, distance from the Sun, diameter, orbit, and mythology. Also covered is planet composition, surface features, atmosphere and magnetic field data, temperature on the planet, and results of exploration spacecraft. Includes links to images, movies, and additional facts. Discusses unanswered questions about Venus as well.

  20. Pluto express: Advanced technologies enable lower cost missions to the outer Solar System and beyond

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staehle, Robert L.; Alkalai, Leon J.; Wyatt, E. Jay; Dohoney, John

    1997-01-01

    Missions to Pluto and the outer Solar System are typically driven by factors which tend to increase cost, such as: long life, high radiation exposure, a large power source, high ?V requirements, difficult telecommunications links, low solar illumination at the destination, and demanding science measurements. Advanced technology is a central part of responding to such challenges in a manner which permits the cost of development and operations to be an order of magnitude less than for prior outer planet missions. Managing the process of technology planning and advanced development versus the associated cost and mission risk is a formidable challenge. Outer Solar System/Europa/Pluto/Solar Probe development activities are leveraging the latest products from the industry, government lab and academia technology pipeline in the areas of software, low power integrated microelectronics, low mass, high efficiency radioisotope power if used, and telecommunications. This paper summarizes the current technology development plan, which is tightly coupled to the New Millennium Program (NMP) Deep Space 1 technology validation flight. Specific detail will be presented about advanced microelectronics technology. This technology will also be shown in the context of an on-going technology roadmap that extends beyond the Pluto Express mission. Other details focus on new technologies available for low cost mission operations, and the processes required to best develop and utilize these technologies. The development goal is to create an integrated flight and ground system with the functional simplicity necessary to achieve high reliability, operability, and a low total mission cost. The development process leverages the JPL Flight System Testbed and commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) products. A university partnership provides additional development support and is leading to a partnership for operations. Software technologies for spacecraft self-commanding and self-monitoring play a key role in meeting an operations vision called Beacon Monitoring. This approach is expected to decrease operations cost significantly by reducing the amount of routine interaction with the spacecraft. The experience gathered may be valuable to Earth orbiting missions, the Mars Exploration Program, and Mission to Planet Earth.

  1. Exploring the Planets: Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    This site contains most of the up-to-date information known about the planet Venus, including mean distance from Sun, length of year, rotation period, mean orbital velocity, inclination of axis, average temperature (day and night), and diameter. Many discoveries about Venus have been made using Earth-based radio telescopes, however the images of Venus in this exhibit were collected by the Magellan spacecraft. Magellan used radar to produce the first high-resolution global map of Venus. Since Venus has no water erosion and little wind, volcanic eruptions are a major force reshaping the landscape. Geologic forces at work beneath the crust create mountains, rifts, and patterns of fractures, while the sluggish winds sculpt the surface in subtler ways but many mysteries remain. This site includes numerous images of the planet.

  2. HIGH-RESOLUTION SATELLITE IMAGING OF THE 2004 TRANSIT OF VENUS AND ASYMMETRIES IN THE CYTHEREAN ATMOSPHERE

    SciTech Connect

    Pasachoff, Jay M. [Williams College-Hopkins Observatory, 33 Lab Campus Drive, Williamstown, MA 01267 (United States); Schneider, Glenn [Steward Observatory, University of Arizona, 933 North Cherry Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85721 (United States); Widemann, Thomas [Observatoire de Paris-LESIA, 92190 Meudon (France)

    2011-04-15

    This paper presents the only space-borne optical-imaging observations of the 2004 June 8 transit of Venus, the first such transit visible from Earth since AD 1882. The high-resolution, high-cadence satellite images we arranged from NASA's Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE) reveal the onset of visibility of Venus's atmosphere and give further information about the black-drop effect, whose causes we previously demonstrated from TRACE observations of a transit of Mercury. The atmosphere is gradually revealed before second contact and after third contact, resulting from the changing depth of atmospheric layers refracting the photospheric surface into the observer's direction. We use Venus Express observations to relate the atmospheric arcs seen during the transit to the atmospheric structure of Venus. Finally, we relate the transit images to current and future exoplanet observations, providing a sort of ground truth showing an analog in our solar system to effects observable only with light curves in other solar systems with the Kepler and CoRoT missions and ground-based exoplanet-transit observations.

  3. Ion flows in Venus' magnetotail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kollmann, P.; Brandt, P. C.; Futaana, Y.; Fedorov, A.

    2014-12-01

    The plasma environment of Venus, including its magnetotail up to 3 Venus radii distance has been studied by the Venus Express spacecraft since 2006. We use the ASPERA/IMA instrument that measures protons and oxygen ions in the eV to keV range. Oxygen ions deriving from Venus' atmosphere and flowing down the magnetotail have been reported and contribute to atmospheric escape (Barabash et al. 2007). There have also been ions observed that flow Venusward in the tail (Dubinin et al. 2014). Signatures of magnetic reconnection have been found (Zhang et al. 2012), which might contribute to these flows. We have numerically calculated flow velocities and densities of protons and oxygen ions in the tail. Since the IMA instrument cannot cover all directions during one scan, we manually identified hundreds of cases of clear and mostly unbiased plasma flows. This approach avoids cases that lead to incorrect results. We find that the Venusward fluxes of both protons and oxygen ions are on average smaller but on the same order of magnitude as the tailward escape fluxes. Venusward fluxes are commonly quasi-steady i.e. observed throughout most of a tail passage, which takes several ten minutes. The instantaneous flow directions can differ by more than 100 degrees in the tail. Their net tailward or Venusward direction is opposite in about half of the cases. Comparison with magnetic field data shows that tailward and Venusward bulk flows are roughly field-aligned. The calculation of plasma moments does not imply that the underlying distributions are thermal and described well with a Maxwellian distribution. About a third of the proton spectra show a suprathermal component. Such cases are more common for Venusward fluxes and can be observed over longer periods. In some cases the additional component is a clearly separated second peak but most of the time it fits well with a flat power law (exponents 0 to 3).

  4. South-polar features on Venus similar to those near the north pole

    Microsoft Academic Search

    G. Piccioni; P. Drossart; A. Sanchez-Lavega; R. Hueso; F. W. Taylor; C. F. Wilson; D. Grassi; L. Zasova; M. Moriconi; A. Adriani; S. Lebonnois; A. Coradini; B. Bézard; F. Angrilli; G. Arnold; K. H. Baines; G. Bellucci; J. Benkhoff; J. P. Bibring; A. Blanco; M. I. Blecka; R. W. Carlson; A. di Lellis; T. Encrenaz; S. Erard; S. Fonti; V. Formisano; T. Fouchet; R. Garcia; R. Haus; J. Helbert; N. I. Ignatiev; P. G. J. Irwin; Y. Langevin; M. A. Lopez-Valverde; D. Luz; L. Marinangeli; V. Orofino; A. V. Rodin; M. C. Roos-Serote; B. Saggin; D. M. Stam; D. Titov; G. Visconti; M. Zambelli; Eleonora Ammannito; Alessandra Barbis; Rainer Berlin; Carlo Bettanini; Angelo Boccaccini; Guillaume Bonnello; Marc Bouye; Fabrizio Capaccioni; Alejandro Cardesin Moinelo; Francesco Carraro; Giovanni Cherubini; Massimo Cosi; Michele Dami; Maurizio de Nino; Davide Del Vento; Marco di Giampietro; Alessandro Donati; Olivier Dupuis; Sylvie Espinasse; Anna Fabbri; Agnes Fave; Iacopo Ficai Veltroni; Gianrico Filacchione; Katia Garceran; Yamina Ghomchi; Maurizio Giustini; Brigitte Gondet; Yann Hello; Florence Henry; Stefan Hofer; Gerard Huntzinger; Juergen Kachlicki; René Knoll; Kouach Driss; Alessandro Mazzoni; Riccardo Melchiorri; Giuseppe Mondello; Francesco Monti; Christian Neumann; Fabrizio Nuccilli; Jerome Parisot; Claudio Pasqui; Stefano Perferi; Gisbert Peter; Alain Piacentino; Carlo Pompei; Jean-Michel Reess; Jean-Pierre Rivet; Antonio Romano; Natalie Russ; Massimo Santoni; Adelmo Scarpelli; Alain Soufflot; Douchane Stefanovitch; Enrico Suetta; Fabio Tarchi; Nazzareno Tonetti; Federico Tosi; Bernd Ulmer

    2007-01-01

    Venus has no seasons, slow rotation and a very massive atmosphere, which is mainly carbon dioxide with clouds primarily of sulphuric acid droplets. Infrared observations by previous missions to Venus revealed a bright `dipole' feature surrounded by a cold `collar' at its north pole. The polar dipole is a `double-eye' feature at the centre of a vast vortex that rotates

  5. System design of the Pioneer Venus spacecraft. Volume 2: Science

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Acheson, L. K.

    1973-01-01

    The objectives of the low-cost Pioneer Venus space probe program are discussed. The space mission and science requirements are analyzed. The subjects considered are as follows: (1) the multiprobe mission, (2) the orbiter mission, (3) science payload accomodations, and (4) orbiter spacecraft experimental interface specifications. Tables of data are provided to show the science allocations for large and small probes. Illustrations of the systems and components of various probe configurations are included.

  6. Sensor Amplifier for the Venus Ground Ambient

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DelCastillo, Linda Y.; Johnson, Travis W.; Hatake, Toshiro; Mojarradi, Mohammad M.; Kolawa, Elizabeth A.

    2006-01-01

    Previous Venus Landers employed high temperature pressure vessels, with thermally protected electronics, to achieve successful missions, with a maximum surface lifetime of 127 minutes. Extending the operating range of electronic systems to the temperatures (480 C) and pressures (90 bar) of the Venus ground ambient would significantly increase the science return of future missions. Toward that end, the current work describes the innovative design of a sensor preamplifier, capable of working in the Venus ground ambient and designed using commercial components (thermionic vacuum tubes, wide band gap transistors, thick film resistors, advanced high temperature capacitors, and monometallic interfaces) To identify commercial components and electronic packaging materials that are capable of operation within the specified environment, a series of active devices, passive components, and packaging materials were screened for operability at 500C, assuming a 10x increase in the mission lifetime. In addition. component degradation as a function of time at 500(deg)C was evaluated. Based on the results of these preliminary evaluations, two amplifiers were developed.

  7. Salt tectonics on Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, C.A.; Amsbury, D.

    1986-05-01

    The discovery of a surprisingly high deuterium/hydrogen ratio on Venus immediately led to the speculation that Venus may have once had a volume of surface water comparable to that of the terrestrial oceans. The authors propose that the evaporation of this putative ocean may have yielded residual salt deposits that formed various terrain features depicted in Venera 15 and 16 radar images. By analogy with models for the total evaporation of the terrestrial oceans, evaporite deposits on Venus should be at least tens to hundreds of meters thick. From photogeologic evidence and in-situ chemical analyses, it appears that the salt plains were later buried by lava flows. On Earth, salt diapirism leads to the formation of salt domes, anticlines, and elongated salt intrusions - features having dimensions of roughly 1 to 100 km. Due to the rapid erosion of salt by water, surface evaporite landforms are only common in dry regions such as the Zagros Mountains of Iran, where salt plugs and glaciers exist. Venus is far drier than Iran; extruded salt should be preserved, although the high surface temperature (470/sup 0/C) would probably stimulate rapid salt flow. Venus possesses a variety of circular landforms, tens to hundreds of kilometers wide, which could be either megasalt domes or salt intrusions colonizing impact craters. Additionally, arcurate bands seen in the Maxwell area of Venus could be salt intrusions formed in a region of tectonic stress. These large structures may not be salt features; nonetheless, salt features should exist on Venus.

  8. Explosive propulsion applications. [to future unmanned missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nakamura, Y.; Varsi, G.; Back, L. H.

    1974-01-01

    The feasibility and application of an explosive propulsion concept capable of supporting future unmanned missions in the post-1980 era were examined and recommendations made for advanced technology development tasks. The Venus large lander mission was selected as the first in which the explosive propulsion concept can find application. A conceptual design was generated and its performance, weight, costs, and interaction effects determined. Comparisons were made with conventional propulsion alternatives. The feasibility of the explosive propulsion system was verified for planetology experiments within the dense atmosphere of Venus as well as the outer planets. Additionally, it was determined that the Venus large lander mission could be augmented ballistically with a significant delivery margin.

  9. Plasma waves at Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strangeway, R. J.

    1991-02-01

    Many significant wave phenomena have been discovered at Venus with the plasma wave instrument on the Pioneer Venus Orbiter. It has been shown that whistler-mode waves in the magnetosheath of the planet may be an important source of energy for the topside ionosphere. Plasma waves are also associated with thickening of the ionopause current layer. Current-generated waves in plasma clouds may also provide anomalous resistance resulting in electron acceleration, possibly producing aurora. Ion-acoustic waves are observed in the bow shock, and appear to be a feature of the magnetotail boundary. Lastly, plasma waves have been cited as evidence for lightning on Venus.

  10. The Venus ground-based image Active Archive: a database of amateur observations of Venus in ultraviolet and infrared light

    E-print Network

    Barentsen, Geert

    2013-01-01

    The Venus ground-based image Active Archive is an online database designed to collect ground-based images of Venus in such a way that they are optimally useful for science. The Archive was built to support ESA's Venus Amateur Observing Project, which utilises the capabilities of advanced amateur astronomers to collect filtered images of Venus in ultraviolet, visible and near-infrared light. These images complement the observations of the Venus Express spacecraft, which cannot continuously monitor the northern hemisphere of the planet due to its elliptical orbit with apocentre above the south pole. We present the first set of observations available in the Archive and assess the usability of the dataset for scientific purposes.

  11. Planetary and Space Science 56 (2008) 807811 First observation of energetic neutral atoms in the Venus environment

    E-print Network

    California at Berkeley, University of

    2008-01-01

    in the Venus environment A. Gallia,Ã, P. Wurza , P. Bochslera , S. Barabashb , A. Grigorievb , Y. Futaanab , M The ASPERA-4 instrument on board the Venus Express spacecraft offers for the first time the possibility to directly measure the emission of energetic neutral atoms (ENAs) in the vicinity of Venus. When

  12. Geologic Map of the Meskhent Tessera Quadrangle (V-3), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ivanov, Mikhail A.; Head, James W., III

    2008-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan Mission objectives included (1) improving the knowledge of the geological processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving the knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Meskhent Tessera quadrangle is in the northern hemisphere of Venus and extends from lat 50 degrees to 75 degrees N. and from long 60 degrees to 120 degrees E. In regional context, the Meskhent Tessera quadrangle is surrounded by extensive tessera regions to the west (Fortuna and Laima Tesserae) and to the south (Tellus Tessera) and by a large basinlike lowland (Atalanta Planitia) on the east. The northern third of the quadrangle covers the easternmost portion of the large topographic province of Ishtar Terra (northwestern map area) and the more localized upland of Tethus Regio (northeastern map area).

  13. The thermal balance of the lower atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tomasko, M. G.

    1983-01-01

    The temperature near the surface of Venus (now established at 730 K) is remarkably high in view of Venus's cloud cover which causes the planet to absorb even less sunlight than does earth. Early attempts to understand the thermal balance that leads to this unusual state were hindered by the lack of basic information regarding the composition, temperature-pressure structure, cloud properties, and wind field of the lower atmosphere. A series of successful space missions have measured many of the above quantities that control the transfer of heat in Venus's lower atmosphere. The relevant observational data are summarized and the attempts to understand the thermal balance of Venus's atmosphere below the cloud tops are reviewed. The data indicate that sufficient sunlight penetrates to deep atmospheric levels and is trapped by the large thermal opacity of the atmosphere to essentially account for the high temperatures observed. Previously announced in STAR as N83-19672

  14. The thermal balance of the lower atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tomasko, M. G.

    1981-01-01

    The temperature near the surface of Venus (now established at 730 K) is remarkably high in view of Venus's cloud cover which causes the planet to absorb even less sunlight than does Earth. Early attempts to understand the thermal balance that leads to this unusual state were hindered by the lack of basic information regarding the composition, temperature-pressure structure, cloud properties, and wind field of the lower atmosphere. A series of successful space missions have measured many of the above quantities that control the transfer of heat in Venus's lower atmosphere. The relevant observational data are summarized and the attempts to understand the thermal balance of Venus's atmosphere below the cloud tops are reviewed. The data indicate that sufficient sunlight penetrates to deep atmospheric levels and is trapped by the large thermal opacity of the atmosphere to essentially account for the high temperatures observed.

  15. Solar Energetic Particles Events and Models for Mars on the Eve of the MAVEN Mission Arrival

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luhmann, J. G.; Mays, M. L.; Odstrcil, D.; Baker, D. N.; Brain, D. A.; Larson, D.

    2014-04-01

    Planetary space weather has attracted much interest as missions including Mars Express and Venus Express observe the responses of the solar wind interactions and atmospheres at those planets to solar activity-related events. In addition, models of space weather phenomena are increasingly realistic and available. In this presentation we describe a particular advancement in the area of solar energetic particle event modeling with potential applications to the terrestrial planets. In particular, this tool can be used to relate particle events observed at several sites in the inner heliosphere, including Mars where the new MAVEN mission will be providing local measurements.

  16. 10. The surface and interior of venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Masursky, H.; Kaula, W.M.; McGill, G.E.; Pettengill, G.H.; Phillips, R.J.; Russell, C.T.; Schubert, G.; Shapiro, I.I.

    1977-01-01

    Present ideas about the surface and interior of Venus are based on data obtained from (1) Earth-based radio and radar: temperature, rotation, shape, and topography; (2) fly-by and orbiting spacecraft: gravity and magnetic fields; and (3) landers: winds, local structure, gamma radiation. Surface features, including large basins, crater-like depressions, and a linear valley, have been recognized from recent ground-based radar images. Pictures of the surface acquired by the USSR's Venera 9 and 10 show abundant boulders and apparent wind erosion. On the Pioneer Venus 1978 Orbiter mission, the radar mapper experiment will determine surface heights, dielectric constant values and small-scale slope values along the sub-orbital track between 50??S and 75??N. This experiment will also estimate the global shape and provide coarse radar images (40-80 km identification resolution) of part of the surface. Gravity data will be obtained by radio tracking. Maps combining radar altimetry with spacecraft and ground-based images will be made. A fluxgate magnetometer will measure the magnetic fields around Venus. The radar and gravity data will provide clues to the level of crustal differentiation and tectonic activity. The magnetometer will determine the field variations accurately. Data from the combined experiments may constrain the dynamo mechanism; if so, a deeper understanding of both Venus and Earth will be gained. ?? 1977 D. Reidel Publishing Company.

  17. Descenso al Infierno de VenusDescenso al Infierno de VenusDescenso al Infierno de VenusDescenso al Infierno de Venus Manuel Alfonseca

    E-print Network

    Alfonseca, Manuel

    Descenso al Infierno de VenusDescenso al Infierno de VenusDescenso al Infierno de VenusDescenso al Infierno de Venus Manuel Alfonseca #12;Manuel Alfonseca 2 #12;Descenso al infierno de Venus 3 Descenso al infierno de Venus Manuel Alfonseca RESERVADOS TODOS LOS DERECHOS. Salvo usos razonables destinados al

  18. A Compact Integrated Raman Spectrometer, CIRS, for Fine-Scale Definitive Mineralogy in Venus Explorations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, A.; Wei, J.; Lambert, J. L.; Hutchinson, I.

    2015-04-01

    A flight Raman system requires carefully crafted optical configurations with high efficiency optical and opto-electronic components. CIRS and MMRS represent two flexible configurations to be selected by various types of Venus missions.

  19. Impeller Flow Characterisation for a High Temperature Venus Drill and Sample Delivery System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pandey, S.; Zacny, K.

    2015-04-01

    Venus Drill and Sample Delivery System is being designed to conduct surface operations during future missions. The impact of ambient atmosphere on the performance of pneumatically driven components is investigated using finite volume model approach.

  20. Long-Lived, Maneuverable, Semi-Buoyant Platform for Venus Upper Atmosphere Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, G.; Sokol, D.; Polidan, R.; Bolisay, L.; Barnes, N.

    2014-06-01

    This presentation discusses the continued development of the Northrop Grumman/L’GARDE team’s long-lived, maneuverable platform to explore the Venus upper atmosphere. It focuses on the overall mission architecture and concept of operations.

  1. The surface of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pettengill, G. H.; Campbell, D. B.; Masursky, H.

    1980-08-01

    Radar images of Venus were assembled from observations made at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico in 1975 and 1977 when Venus made close approaches to the earth. The empty band below the equator is a region where in 1975 and 1977 the imaging method was unable to resolve the radar echoes. Shrouded by clouds, the surface of Venus is now mapped by radar from the earth and from a spacecraft in orbit around Venus and the images suggest a geology intermediate between that of the earth and that of Mars. From a synthesis of all the data now available there begins to emerge the picture of a planet nearly the size of the earth whose surface has been modified by all the processes that have shaped the earth's surface except erosion by rain.

  2. Venus Altitude Cycling Balloon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Jong, M. L.

    2015-04-01

    A novel balloon concept is demonstrated that uses mechanical compression as altitude control mechanism to sustain long duration balloon probe flight in the cloud level region of Venus’ atmosphere between 45 and 58 km altitude.

  3. Venus Transit 2004

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    In just several weeks, Venus, the Earth's sister planet, will pass in front of the sun, affording astronomers and the general public the ability to take part in a extremely rare event. While persons in Europe, Africa, and Asia will have the best vantage point for this occurrence, those interested in the Venus transit will want to take a detailed look at this lovely website in order to find out more about the event. Launched by the European Southern Observatory and the European Association for Astronomy Education (in cooperation with three other organizations), the site contains ample information about the latest news from the project, detailed background material about this astronomical event, the network of institutions involved with the project, and information on how individuals may participate in the Venus Transit 2004 project. One of the most helpful areas contains animations of the Venus transit from different perspectives.

  4. Venus fly trap

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Paul Lenz (None; )

    2006-01-26

    Time-lapse photos or video show progressions from the start of an event to the end of the event. These time-lapse photos illustrate the growth of a single Venus fly trap. Biological processes require time.

  5. Mercury, Venus, and Earth!

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    bschiffer

    2009-10-21

    You will compare and contrast Mercury, Venus, and Earth. While looking at these different websites, use the information to fill in your handout of a column chart and on the back answer the questions you are asked on here. First view this website and record on your chart the distance from the sun Mercury,Venus, and Earth are. Now, learn about Mercury! What is the surface ...

  6. The planet Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    C. Boyer; A. Cazenave

    1977-01-01

    Astronomical observations and space probe explorations of Venus are discussed. The use of ultraviolet photography and radioastronomy to determine the period of rotation of the Venusian atmosphere (4 days) and the planetary surface (243 days) is described. Studies of the Venusian atmosphere conducted by the U.S. Mariner program and the Soviet Venera probes are considered. The launch of the Pioneer-Venus-Orbiter

  7. Plate tectonics on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, D. L.

    1981-01-01

    The high surface temperature of Venus implies a permanently buoyant lithosphere and a thick basaltic crust. Terrestrial-style tectonics with deep subduction and crustal recycling is not possible. Overthickened basaltic crust partially melts instead of converting to eclogite. Because mantle magmas do not have convenient access to the surface the Ar-40 abundance in the atmosphere should be low. Venus may provide an analog to Archean tectonics on the earth.

  8. Can Venus shed microorganisms?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konesky, Gregory

    2009-08-01

    The pale featureless cloud tops of Venus reveal a rich complexity when viewed in ultraviolet. These features result from an unknown absorber brought up from lower atmospheric levels by convection, particularly at lower latitudes. While the surface of Venus is extremely hostile to life as we know it, there exists a habitable region in the atmosphere, centered at approximately 50 km, where the temperature ranges from 30 to 80ºC and the pressure is one bar. Numerous examples of cloud-borne life exist on Earth. However, the environment in the Venus atmospheric habitable zone has only a few ppm of water which is present as misty droplets, strong sulfuric acid, and intense UV illumination. The proposal that putative cloud-borne life forms in Venus' atmospheric habitable zone can be transported to Earth by a solar conveyance face several challenges. Vigorous convective mixing, especially at the lower latitudes is considered as a means of transport to the upper reaches of Venus' atmosphere. Potential propulsive forces imparted by both solar wind and sunlight pressure are considered as a means of achieving escape velocity from Venus. Additional hurdles include direct exposure by such transported life forms to the rigors of the space environment. These are contrasted to those experienced by microorganisms that may be carried within meteorites and comets. A middle ground is perhaps demonstrated by plankton that has been observed at high altitudes on Earth, likely lofted there by a hurricane, which is encased in protective ice crystals.

  9. 3. ALTOVITI VENUS STATUE IN THE TEMPLE OF VENUS AS ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    3. ALTOVITI VENUS STATUE IN THE TEMPLE OF VENUS AS SEEN FROM LIVING ROOM DOORS, SOUTHEAST FACADE OF KYKUIT HOUSE, ON AXIS WITH LINDEN ALLEE - Kykuit, 200 Lake Road, Pocantico Hills, Westchester County, NY

  10. Comet rendezvous mission

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Tony Reichhardt

    1984-01-01

    A National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) advisory team has selected a bright, short-period comet named Kopff as the target for a comet rendezvous\\/asteroid flyby mission to be launched in 1990. The rendezvous is the third in a series of ``core missions''-along with the Venus Radar Mapper and a Mars orbiter---to be proposed following recommendations by the agency's Solar System

  11. 11. Pioneer venus experiment descriptions

    Microsoft Academic Search

    L. Colin; D. M. Hunten

    1977-01-01

    This concluding paper of a special issue of Space Science Reviews, devoted to the exploration of Venus and the Pioneer Venus Program, contains brief engineering descriptions of the experiments to be integrated into the Orbiter and Multiprobe scientific payloads.

  12. Venus Mobile Explorer with RPS for Active Cooling: A Feasibility Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leifer, Stephanie D.; Green, Jacklyn R.; Balint, Tibor S.; Manvi, Ram

    2009-01-01

    We present our findings from a study to evaluate the feasibility of a radioisotope power system (RPS) combined with active cooling to enable a long-duration Venus surface mission. On-board power with active cooling technology featured prominently in both the National Research Council's Decadal Survey and in the 2006 NASA Solar System Exploration Roadmap as mission-enabling for the exploration of Venus. Power and cooling system options were reviewed and the most promising concepts modeled to develop an assessment tool for Venus mission planners considering a variety of future potential missions to Venus, including a Venus Mobile Explorer (either a balloon or rover concept), a long-lived Venus static lander, or a Venus Geophysical Network. The concepts modeled were based on the integration of General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) modules with different types of Stirling cycle heat engines for power and cooling. Unlike prior investigations which reported on single point design concepts, this assessment tool allows the user to generate either a point design or parametric curves of approximate power and cooling system mass, power level, and number of GPHS modules needed for a "black box" payload housed in a spherical pressure vessel.

  13. The High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) Experiment On The European Mars Express Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neukum, G.; Hoffmann, H.; HRSC Science Experiment Team

    Imaging Mars is one of the main goals of the European Mars Express mission and will be performed by the German High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC). The HRSC ex- periment is a pushbroom scanning instrument with 9 CCD line detectors mounted in parallel on the focal plane. Its unique feature is the ability to obtain nearly simul- taneously imaging data of a specific site at high resolution, with along-track triple stereo, with four colours, and at five different phase angles, thus avoiding any time- dependent variations of the observation conditions. An additional Super-Resolution Channel (HRSC-SRC), a framing device, will yield nested-in images in the meter- range thus serving as the sharpening eye for detailed photogeologic studies. The spa- tial resolution from the nominal periapsis altitude of 250 km will be 10 m/pixel and 2.3 m/pixel for the HRSC-SRC. The manufacture of the flight hardware has been ac- complished. Before delivery of the flight model to ESA in January 2002, tests of the instrument were performed demonstrating its imaging capabilities and performances. During the nominal operational lifetime of the mission of 1 Martian year, it will be possible to cover at least 50% of the Martian surface at a spatial resolution of better than 15 m/pixel. More than 70% of the Martian surface can be observed at a spatial resolution of better than 30 m/pixel, while more than 1% of the surface will be im- aged at about 2.5 m/pixel. HRSC on Mars Express will be able to close the existing gap between medium to low-resolution coverage on the one hand and the very high resolution images of Mars Global Surveyor as well as the in-situ observations and measurements by landers on the other hand. The HRSC on Mars Express will make a major contribution to the study of Martian geosciences with special emphasis on the evolution of the Martian surface in general, the evolution of volcanism, and the role of water throughout the Martian history. The instrument will obtain images containing morphologic and topographic information at high spatial and vertical resolution al- lowing the improvement of the Martian cartographic base down to scales of 1:50,000. In order to optimize the science return, a thorough selection of primary target sites is actually performed by the international Co-Investigator team comprising 40 scien- tists from 10 countries. This experiment will also address atmospheric phenomena and atmosphere-surface interactions and will provide urgently needed support for ongoing and future lander missions as well as for exobiological studies.

  14. Beagle 2: a proposed exobiology lander for ESA's 2003 Mars Express mission.

    PubMed

    Sims, M R; Pillinger, C T; Wright, I P; Dowson, J; Whitehead, S; Wells, A; Spragg, J E; Fraser, G; Richter, L; Hamacher, H; Johnstone, A; Meredith, N P; de la Nougerede, C; Hancock, B; Turner, R; Peskett, S; Brack, A; Hobbs, J; Newns, M; Senior, A; Humphries, M; Keller, H U; Thomas, N; Lingard, J S; Ng, T C

    1999-01-01

    The aim of the proposed Beagle 2 small lander for ESA's 2003 Mars Express mission is to search for organic material on and below the surface of Mars and to study the inorganic chemistry and mineralogy of the landing site. The lander will have a total mass of 60kg including entry, descent, and landing system. Experiments will be deployed on the surface using a robotic arm. It will use a mechanical mole and grinder to obtain samples from below the surface, under rocks, and inside rocks. Sample analysis by a mass spectrometer will include isotopic analysis. An optical microscope, an X-ray spectrometer and a Mossbauer spectrometer will conduct in-situ rock studies. PMID:11543221

  15. Magellan: Preliminary description of Venus surface geologic units

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saunders, R. S.; Arvidson, R.; Head, J. W., III; Schaber, G. G.; Solomon, S. C.; Stofan, E. R.; Basilevsky, Alexander T.; Guest, J. E.; Mcgill, G. E.; Moore, H. J.

    1991-01-01

    Observations from approximately one-half of the Magellan nominal eight-month mission to map Venus are summarized. Preliminary compilation of initial geologic observations of the planet reveals a surface dominated by plains that are characterized by extensive and intensive volcanism and tectonic deformation. Four broad categories of units have been identified: plains units, linear belts, surficial units, and terrain units.

  16. Geologic map of the Mead quadrangle (V-21), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Campbell, Bruce A.; Clark, David A.

    2006-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan Mission objectives included (1) improving the knowledge of the geological processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving the knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Mead quadrangle (V-21) of Venus is bounded by lat 0 deg and 25 deg N., long 30 deg and 60 deg E. This quadrangle is one of 62 covering Venus at 1:5,000,000 scale. Named for the largest crater on Venus, the quadrangle is dominated by effusive volcanic deposits associated with five major coronae in eastern Eistla Regio (Didilia, Pavlova, Calakomana, Isong, and Ninmah), corona-like tectonic features, and Disani Corona. The southern extremity of Bell Regio, marked by lava flows from Nyx Mons, north of the map area, forms the north-central part of the quadrangle. The shield volcanoes Kali, Dzalarhons, and Ptesanwi Montes lie south and southwest of the large corona-related flow field. Lava flows from sources east of Mead crater flood low-lying areas along the east edge of the quadrangle.

  17. Mars mission concepts and opportunities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Young, Archie C.

    1986-01-01

    Trajectory and mission requirement data are presented for Earth Mars opposition and conjunction class roundtrip flyby and stopover mission opportunities available between 1997 and 2045. The opposition class flyby mission uses direct transfer trajectories to and on return from Mars. The opposition class stopover mission employs the gravitational field of Venus to accelerate the space vehicle on either the outbound or inbound leg in order to reduce the propulsion requirement associated with the opposition class mission. The conjunction class mission minimizes propulsion requirements by optimizing the stopover time at Mars.

  18. Perspectives of the bistatic radar and occultation studying of the Venus atmosphere and surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavelyev, Alexander; Gubenko, Vladimir; Matyugov, Stanislav; Yakovlev, Oleg

    2013-04-01

    Studying the physical properties of Venus surface and subsurface structures is an important direction in the space research. The first aim of this contribution is to present some results of reanalysis of the bistatic radar and occultation experiments provided using Venera-9, 10 and 15, 16 satellites. Comparison is made with Magellan and Venus Express bistatic radar missions. Bistatic radio images of the Venus surface is compared with monostatic radio images obtained by the Soviet and USA orbiters. The second aim consists in introducing new methods for investigation of the layered structure of the Venus atmosphere and measuring parameters of Venus surface and subsurface structures using the bistatic radar technology. The first bistatic radar measurements with spatial resolution ~ 10-20 km have been carried out during autumn of 1975 year in the five Venus equatorial regions using the Venera-9 and 10 satellites. Small roughness and, in general, plain character of relief in the investigated regions have been revealed. In 1983, the satellites Venera 15 and 16 have carried out new bistatic radar experiments with spatial resolution in the interval 5 - 10 km. New information on the large-scale topography and roughness of small-scale relief has been obtained in Northern polar areas of the planet. Some features have been detected. 1. The significant variations of the reflectivity ~ 2-4 times were found in the first region. The second area of reflectivity magnitude was far below (by three - four times) the previously measured values in the equatorial regions of Venus. These significant reflectivity variations may be related to changes in the conductivity of the ground. 2. Extremely small values roughness with rms of slopes ~ 0.20 were recorded in the northern area. 3. Both the bending angle and the reflection coefficient were determined in the experiment from the measured frequency difference between the direct and the reflected signals as a function of time, using the orbital data. New methods developed by analysis of the experimental data obtained using high-stability radio fields of the Earth's navigational satellites are introduced. For investigations of the layered structures of the Venus atmosphere a new eikonal acceleration/intensity technique is proposed. This technique allows: (1) one frequency high-precision measuring the total absorption of radio waves in the atmosphere; (2) estimating vertical gradients of the refractivity, and determining the height, slope, and horizontal displacement of the atmospheric and ionospheric layers; (3) a criterion is introduced for identification of the internal waves in the Venus atmosphere. To obtain the information on the planetary subsurface structure up to depth 1 km it is necessary to use radio waves in the Low Frequency (LF), Medium Frequency (MF), or High Frequency (HF) bands with wavelength from 1 m up 300 m. The depth of radio sounding is proportional to the wavelength, the intensity of the radio-emission source, and depends on the conductivity of the ground. The bistatic subsurface remote sensing of the planet can be achieved using powerful Earth based transmitters, and/or sporadic radio emission of the Sun and other space radio sources. The work was partly supported by Program 22 of Presidium of Russian Academy of Sciences.

  19. Venus - False Color Perspective of Sif and Gula Mons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    A portion of western Eistla Regio is shown in this three dimensional, computer-generated view of the surface of Venus. The viewpoint is at an elevation of 1.2 kilometers (0.75 mile) at a location 700 kilometers (435 miles) southeast of Gula Mons, the volcano on the right horizon. Gula Mons reaches 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) high and is located around 22 degrees north latitude and 359 degrees east longitude. Sif Mons, the volcano on the left horizon, has a diameter of 300 kilometers (186 miles) and a height of 2 kilometers (1.2 miles). Magellan imaging and altimetry data are combined to develop a three-dimensional computer view of the planet's surface. Simulated color based on color images from the Soviet Venera 13 and 14 spacecraft is added to enhance small-scale structure. This image was produced at JPL's Multimission Image Processing Laboratory by Eric De Jong, Jeff Hall and Myche McAuley. Magellan is a NASA spacecraft mission to map the surface of Venus with imaging radar. The basic scientific instrument is a synthetic aperture radar, or SAR, which can look through the thick clouds perpetually shielding the surface of Venus. Magellan is in orbit around Venus which completes one turn around its axis in 243 Earth days. That period of time, one Venus day, is the length of a Magellan mapping cycle. The spacecraft completed its first mapping cycle and primary mission on May 15, 1991, and immediately began its second cycle. During the first cycle, Magellan mapped more than 80 percent of the planet's surface and the current and subsequent cycles of equal duration will provide complete mapping of Venus. Magellan was launched May 4, 1989, aboard the space shuttle Atlantis and went into orbit around Venus August 10, 1990.

  20. Project Venus 2004

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    "Venus 2004" is a project of the Astroinfo Society, which was organized to study and publish findings on the transit of Venus that occurred in 2004. Historically, the planet's transit across the sun has been used to make many calculations about the sun and the earth. The technology available today, as opposed to the last transit in 1882, has made it possible for amateur astronomers to join in making observations and testing some of those historical calculations. Two publications, "Measurements of the Solar Parallaxe from Observations of the Transit of Mercury" and "Calculation of the Solar Parallaxe from Observations" are available on this site in PDF format. Both publications contain detailed information, photographs, charts and mathematical equations used to calculate their findings. These are excellent resources for students and other amateur astronomers who are gearing up for the next Venus transit in 2012.

  1. Wireless Seismometer for Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponchak, George E.; Scardelletti, Maximilian C.; Taylor, Brandt; Beard, Steve; Clougherty, Brian; Meredith, Roger D.; Beheim, Glenn M.; Kiefer, Walter S.; Hunter, Gary W.

    2014-01-01

    Measuring the seismic activity of Venus is critical to understanding its composition and interior dynamics. Because Venus has an average surface temperature of 462 C and the challenge of providing cooling to multiple seismometers, a high temperature, wireless sensor using a wide bandgap semiconductor is an attractive option. This paper presents progress towards a seismometer sensor with wireless capabilities for Venus applications. A variation in inductance of a coil caused by a 1 cm movement of a ferrite probe held in the coil and attached to a balanced leaf-spring seismometer causes a variation of 80 MHz in the transmitted signal from the oscillator sensor system at 420 C, which correlates to a 10 kHz mm sensitivity when the ferrite probe is located at the optimum location in the coil.

  2. Exploring Venus by Solar Airplane

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2001-01-01

    A solar-powered airplane is proposed to explore the atmospheric environment of Venus. Venus has several advantages for a solar airplane. At the top of the cloud level, the solar intensity is comparable to or greater than terrestrial solar intensities. The Earthlike atmospheric pressure means that the power required for flight is lower for Venus than that of Mars, and the slow rotation of Venus allows an airplane to be designed for continuous sunlight, with no energy storage needed for night-time flight. These factors mean that Venus is perhaps the easiest planet in the solar system for flight of a long-duration solar airplane.

  3. An analysis of AMTEC, multi-cell ground-demo for the Pluto/Express mission

    SciTech Connect

    Tournier, J.M.; El-Genk, M.S.

    1998-07-01

    Results of recent tests of an 8-cell, AMTEC ground-demo are analyzed and the performance of individual cells compared. The ground-demo produced a peak electric power of 27 W{sub e} at an output voltage of 16 V, when tested at hot and cold side temperatures of 1123 K and 553 K. The electric power output and terminal voltage of the individual cells, however, differed by as much as 25%, from 2.94 to 3.76 W{sub e}, and 1.73 to 2.21 V, respectively. These variations were attributed to differences in: (a) contact resistance between electrode / BASE / current collector; (b) current (or electrons) leakage between anode and cathode electrodes through the metal-ceramic braze joint between BASE tubes and support plate; and (c) the charge-exchange polarization losses. Model's predictions compared very well with measured voltage and electric power output of individual cells and of the ground-demo. At the operating conditions for the Pluto/Express spacecraft (T{sub hot} {approximately} 1200 K, T{sub cd} {approximately} 573 K), the best performing ground-demo cell would have delivered 5 W{sub e} at an output voltage of 3 V. These values, however, are still significantly lower than those needed to meet the Pluto/Express mission power requirements (8.2 W{sub e} at 3.5 V, per cell).

  4. The galileo venus encounter.

    PubMed

    Johnson, T V; Yeates, C M; Young, R; Dunne, J

    1991-09-27

    The Galileo spacecraft passed Venus on its way to Jupiter on 10 February 1990, less than 4 months after launch from Earth aboard the shuttle Atlantis. Because Galileo's instruments were selected for broad-based planetary exploration, the spacecraft was able to obtain a wide range of measurements during the Venus encounter. Together with ground-based observations conducted during the encounter, these observations have yielded more accurate information about the planet's plasma environment, cloud patterns, and the possible existence of lightning. PMID:17784091

  5. Topographic comparisons of uplift features on Venus and Earth: Implications for Venus tectonics

    E-print Network

    Jurdy, Donna M.

    Topographic comparisons of uplift features on Venus and Earth: Implications for Venus tectonics: Available online 12 September 2011 Keywords: Venus, Surface Earth Tectonics a b s t r a c t Venus and Earth for shaping Venus' surface. Correlations tend to improve with faster spreading rates; Venus' correlations rank

  6. A Low-Cost Approach to the Investigation of Venus Lightning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majid, Walid

    2015-04-01

    The occurrence of Venus lightning has been detected by atmospheric probes and landers on Venus; by ionospheric satellites; by an orbiting visible spectrometer; at radio frequencies by the Galileo spacecraft while flying by Venus; and by an Earth-based telescope. However, none of these detectors has enabled us to determine the global occurrence rate of lightning in the atmosphere of Venus, nor the altitude at which this lightning is generated. Such measurements are needed in order to determine the processes that generate Venus lightning and to establish the importance of Venus lightning in controlling the chemical composition of the Venus atmosphere. A simple and affordable mission to perform this mapping can be achieved with CubeSat technology. A mother spacecraft with at least three CubeSat partners using RF detection could map the occurrence of lightning globally and determine its altitude of origin, with triangulation of precisely timed RF event arrivals. Such a mission will provide space for complementary investigations and be affordable under future Discovery mission programs.

  7. Study of aerosol properties in the upper haze of Venus from SPICAV IR data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luginin, Mikhail; Fedorova, Anna; Belyaev, Denis; Montmessin, Franck; Wilquet, Valérie; Korablev, Oleg; Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Vandaele, Ann-Carine

    2015-04-01

    Upper haze of Venus lies above cloud layer and extends from 70 to 90 km. According to previous missions results the upper haze consists of submicron particles that are considered to be droplets of concentrated sulfuric acid (75%) [Kawabata et al., 1980; Lane and Opstbaum, 1983; Sato et al., 1996]. Recently, from the observations of Venus Express spacecraft a bimodal particle distribution was discovered as well as presence of detached haze layers at 80-90 km. This may be due to abundance of different kinds of particles [Montmessin et al., 2008; Wilquet et al., 2009]. Moreover, study of aerosol particles at altitudes above 90 km could be the key to solution of the sulfur oxides problem recently discovered in this altitude range [Belyaev et al., 2012]. SPICAV IR spectrometer is a part of SPICAV/SOIR experiment on board the Venus Express orbiter [Korablev et al., 2012]. It measures a vertical structure of Venus atmosphere using solar occultation method at altitudes 70-100 km in spectral range of 0.65 1.7 µm. The spectrometer is sensitive to abundance of submicron (mode 1) and micron (mode 2) particles in the Venus' upper haze. Using sulfuric acid refractive indices, Mie scattering theory, and spectral dependence of aerosol extinction, one can derive vertical distribution of particles size and number density assuming bimodal as well as unimodal cases. In this paper we present vertical profiles of extinction, number density and size distribution from more than 200 occultations obtained between May 2006 and September 2014. Aerosol scale height is found to be equal to ~4 km in the upper haze. At the equator, upper haze top lies at higher altitudes than near the North Pole. A detached haze layers were observed in ~50% of all observations in latitude range from 60°N to 90°N where the best spatial resolution is achieved. According to our statistics bimodal distribution is typical for altitudes from 75 to 85 km, while unimodal distribution dominates at altitudes 70-75 km and above 85 km. For bimodal size distribution effective radii of particles and ratio of density are fitted and effective variances are held fixed, effective radii vary between 0.05-0.4 µm (mode 1) and 0.4-1.1 µm (mode 2). For unimodal size distribution effective radius is fitted and effective variance is held fixed, effective radius varies between 0.2-0.8 µm. Diurnal variations have been analysed. This work is supported by the grant 11.G34.31.0074 from Russian government to MIPT and the Program 22 of the RAS Presidium.

  8. Observe how radar was used to map Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    TERC. Center for Earth and Space Science Education

    2003-01-01

    This series of five animations summarizes how the Magellan Radar Mapping Mission created a map of Venus. High school students can see that dense cloud cover obscured the planet's surface and how radar was used to penetrate the clouds and measure the topography. The animations also demonstrate how the images were captured in long strips and sent back to Earth. Sample image strips are shown, as well as the final product: a rotating map of Venus. Movie controls allow students to repeat, pause, or step through the animation, which can give students more time to analyze the images. Copyright 2005 Eisenhower National Clearinghouse

  9. Fundamental issues in the geology and geophysics of venus.

    PubMed

    Solomon, S C; Head, J W

    1991-04-12

    A number of important and currently unresolved issues in the global geology and geophysics of Venus will be addressable with the radar imaging, altimetry, and gravity measurements now forthcoming from the Magellan mission. Among these are the global volcanic flux and the rate of formation of new crust; the global heat flux and its regional variations; the relative importance of localized hot spots and linear centers of crustal spreading to crustal formation and tectonics; and the planform of mantle convection on Venus and the nature of the interactions among interior convective flow, near-surface deformation and magmatism. PMID:17769271

  10. Plains Tectonics on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banerdt, W. B.; McGill, G. E.; Zuber, M. T.

    1996-01-01

    Tectonic deformation in the plains of Venus is pervasive, with virtually every area of the planet showing evidence for faulting or fracturing. This deformation can be classified into three general categories, defined by the intensity and areal extent of the surface deformation: distributed deformation, concentrated deformation, and local fracture patterns.

  11. Polar temperature of venus.

    PubMed

    Gale, W A; Sinclair, A C

    1969-09-26

    The presence of substantial polar cooling of Venus, as derived from microwave interferometry at 10.6 cm wavelength, is shown to be open to doubt. Other microwave measurements give little evidence for significant pole-ward variation in temperature on the planet. PMID:17817884

  12. Mercury and Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Integrated Teaching and Learning Program,

    Students explore Mercury and Venus, the first and second planets nearest the Sun. They learn about the planets' characteristics, including their differences from Earth. Students also learn how engineers are involved in the study of planets by designing equipment and spacecraft to go where it is too dangerous for humans.

  13. The transits of Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    A. Chapman

    1998-01-01

    The transits of Venus across the solar disk in 1761 and 1769 were two of the most momentous events in the history of astronomy. For, in the wake of Newton's theory of universal gravitation, the correct determination of the solar parallax (and the ensuing distance of the Sun) had become of the greatest significance in establishing the proportions of the

  14. Venus - Lessons for earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunten, D. M.

    1992-01-01

    The old idea that Venus might possess surface conditions to those of an overcast earth has been thoroughly refuted by space-age measurements. Instead, the two planets may have started out similar, but diverged because of the greater solar flux at Venus. This cannot be proved, but is consistent with everything known. A runaway greenhouse effect could have evaporated an 'ocean'. The hydrogen would escape, and most of the oxygen would be incorporated into the crust. Without liquid water, CO2 would remain in the atmosphere. Chlorine atoms would catalyze the recombination of any free oxygen back to CO2. The same theories apply to the future of the earth, and to the explanation of the polar ozone holes; the analogies are striking. There is no likelihood that the earth will actually come to resemble Venus, but Venus serves both as a warning that major environmental effects can flow from seemingly small causes, and as a testbed for the predictive models of the earth.

  15. Venus tectonics: initial analysis from magellan.

    PubMed

    Solomon, S C; Head, J W; Kaula, W M; McKenzie, D; Parsons, B; Phillips, R J; Schubert, G; Talwani, M

    1991-04-12

    Radar imaging and altimetry data from the Magellan mission have revealed a diversity of deformational features at a variety of spatial scales on the Venus surface. The plains record a superposition of different episodes of deformation and volcanism; strain is both areally distributed and concentrated into zones of extension and shortening. The common coherence of strain patterns over hundreds of kilometers implies that many features in the plains reflect a crustal response to mantle dynamic processes. Ridge belts and mountain belts represent successive degrees of lithospheric shortening and crustal thickening; the mountain belts also show widespread evidence for extension and collapse both during and following crustal compression. Venus displays two geometrical patterns of concentrated lithospheric extension: quasi-circular coronae and broad rises with linear rift zones; both are sites of significant volcanism. No long, large-offset strike-slip faults have been observed, although limited local horizontal shear is accommodated across many zones of crustal shortening. In general, tectonic features on Venus are unlike those in Earth's oceanic regions in that strain typically is distributed across broad zones that are one to a few hundred kilometers wide, and separated by stronger and less deformed blocks hundreds of kilometers in width, as in actively deforming continental regions on Earth. PMID:17769277

  16. Transit of Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    The Transit of Venus is similar to a solar eclipse, where -- from the perspective on Earth -- Venus passes in front of the Sun. This event does not happen very often. In fact, no one alive today has experienced this phenomenon, which will take place on June 8 and will be visible for most of Europe, Asia, and Africa.First, the Armagh Planetarium created a great, expansive informational site all about the Transit of Venus (1). Users can find basic facts, observing information, histories of past transits, and much more. Next, the European Southern Observatory presents the VT-2004 project's aim to gain knowledge and encourage public interest in the event (2). Users can observe Venus's progression towards the transit with the daily images from April 17, 2004 to present news updates. Educators can discover transit-related activities and educational materials. The third site, created by NASA, discusses the details of the Sun-Earth Connection Education Forum and San Francisco's Exploratorium's live webcast of the Transit (3). The site supplies enjoyable, educational materials for students, educators, museums, scientists, and amateur astronomers. The next site, also created by NASA, provides an introduction to the Venus Transits that will take place June 2004 and 2012 (4). Visitors can find helpful figures and text about the geographic visibility of the events. The site offers an observer's handbook as well as a discussion about the predictions of the event. Next, Professor Backhaus presents a project where schools, amateur astronomers, and universities will collaborate to gather transit data and learn about observing (5). Users can discover the six parts of the project as well as learn how to participate in the worldwide endeavor. The sixth site also discusses a Venus Transit project (6). Endorsed by the Astronomical Association of Zurich, this project's goals are to process data collected by amateur astronomers by different observation methods, to act as a data exchange center, and to determine the astronomical unit. Next, the Exploratorium furnishes general information about the Transit, its history, how viewers observe it, what it looks like, and why it is an important event (7). Users can find out about the live webcast that will begin on June 7, 2004 from Athens, Greece. Educators can find student activities developed to integrate discussions into the classroom. Lastly, Willie Koorts, an employee at the South African Astronomical Observatory, recounts the observations of scientists in Africa of the last transit of Venus (8). The site contains many historical photographs along with informational diagrams and figures.

  17. Magellan - Initial analysis of Venus surface modification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arvidson, R. E.; Baker, V. R.; Elachi, C.; Saunders, R. S.; Wood, J. A.

    1991-04-01

    Images of the Venus surface provided by the Magellan mission make it possible to see the fine-scale features diagnostic of weathering, erosion, and deposition. These include ejecta deposits extending up to 1000 km to the west of several impact craters, windblown deposits, features containing both obstacles and a source of particulate material, and evidence for degradation by atmosphere-surface interactions and mass movements. Initial Magellan observations pertaining to the nature, rate, and history of surficial processes are analyzed. Emphasis is placed on radar imaging, but results from radiometry and altimetry observations are also discussed.

  18. The Venus nitric oxide night airglow: Model calculations based on the Venus thermospheric general circulation model

    SciTech Connect

    Bougher, S.W. (Univ. of Arizona, Tucson (United States)); Gerard, J.C. (Univ. de Liege, Ougree-Liege (Belgium)); Stewart, A.I.F.; Fesen, C.G. (Univ. of Colorado, Boulder (United States))

    1990-05-01

    Pioneer Venus (PV) orbiter ultraviolet spectrometer (OUVS) images of the nightside airglow in the (0, 1) {delta} band of nitric oxide showed a maximum whose average location was at 0200 local solar time just south of the equator. The average airglow brightness calculated over a portion of the nightside for 35 early orbits during the Pioneer Venus mission was a factor of 4 lower than this maximum. Recent recalibration of the PV OUVS instrument and reanalysis of the data yield new values for this statistical maximum (1.9 {plus minus} 0.6 kR) and the nightside average (400-460 {plus minus} 120 R) nightglow. This emission is produced by radiative recombination of N and O atoms transported from their source on the dayside to the nightside by the Venus thermospheric circulation. The Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (VTGCM) has been extended to incorporate odd nitrogen chemistry in order to examine the dynamical and chemical processes required to give rise to this emission. Its predictions of dayside N atom densities are also compared with empirical models based on Pioneer Venus measurements. Calculations are presented corresponding to OUVS data taken during solar maximum. The average production of nitrogen atoms on the dayside is about 9.0 {times} 10{sup 9} atoms cm{sup {minus}2} s{sup {minus}1}. Approximately 30% of this dayside source is required for transport to the nightside to yield the observed dark-disk nightglow features. The statistical location and intensity of the bright spot are well reproduced, as well as the altitude of the airglow layer. The importance of the large-scale transport and eddy diffusion on the global N({sup 4}S) distribution is also evaluated.

  19. Models of Venus atmosphere (1972)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1972-01-01

    Criteria were developed in the following areas: environment, structures, guidance and control, and chemical propulsion. Quantitative data for the Venus atmosphere were obtained from earth-based observations and from spacecraft which have entered the Venus atmosphere or passed within several planetary radii of the planet. The models provide the temperature, pressure, and density profiles required to perform basic aerodynamic analyses. A set of engineering models are provided for the Venus atmosphere, based on theory and measured data available in January 1972.

  20. Tectonics and composition of Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, D.L.

    1980-01-01

    The uncompressed density of Venus is a few percent less than the Earth. The high upper mantle temperature of Venus deepens the eclogite stability field and inserts a partial melt field. A thick basaltic crust is therefore likely. The anomalous density of Venus relative to the progression from Mercury to Mars may therefore have a tectonic rather than a cosmochemical explanation. There may be no need to invoke differences in composition or oxidization state.

  1. Venus surface properties deduced from radar and radiometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ford, P. G.

    1989-01-01

    The brightness of surface features on side looking radar images of Venus is determined by many factors: the angles of incidence and reflection, polarization, surface geometry and composition, and so forth. The contribution from surface properties themselves can only be deduced by combining several types of measurement. For instance, without additional information, it is impossible to distinguish the effects of changes in surface roughness from those in dielectric constant. In common with the Moon and Mars, the surface of Venus appears to scatter radar waves in two ways: small-scale surface inhomogeneities, i.e., those smaller than the incident wavelength, depolarize and scatter the energy over a wide range of angles. The Pioneer Venus radar mapper experiment made three overlapping sets of measurements of the equatorial region of Venus from 15 deg S latitude to 45 deg N; the backscatter cross section at a range of incidence angles, the shape and intensity of radar echoes from the nadir, and the microwave brightness temperature of the surface. These techniques developed during the analysis of Pioneer Venus data will be used during the Magellan mission to extract measurements of surface slopes and dielectric constants over all areas covered by the SAR and altimeter antennae, with a resolution of about 10 km. A knowledge of the mechanisms that govern surface scattering will also be useful in the analysis of higher resolution side looking radar images, particularly in distinguishing the effects of changing roughness from those caused by a long range surface tilt or changing dielectric constant.

  2. The Venus Zone: Seeking the Twin of Earth's Twin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kane, Stephen R.; Kopparapu, Ravi Kumar; Domagal-Goldman, Shawn

    2015-01-01

    The field of exoplanetary science has seen a dramatic improvement in sensitivity to terrestrial planets over recent years. Such discoveries have been a key feature of results from the Kepler mission which utilizes the transit method to determine the size of the planet. These discoveries have resulted in a corresponding interest in the topic of the Habitable Zone (HZ) and the search for potential Earth analogs. Within the Solar System, there is a clear dichotomy between Venus and Earth in terms of atmospheric evolution, likely the result of the large difference in incident flux from the Sun. Since Venus is 95% of the Earth's radius in size, it is impossible to distinguish between these two planets based only on size. In this talk I will discuss planetary insolation in the context of atmospheric erosion and runaway greenhouse limits for planets similar to Venus. Using the ``Venus Zone'' (VZ), I will present identified potential Venus analogs from Kepler data and subsequent occurance rates of such planets.

  3. Venus Mobile Explorer with RPS for active cooling: A feasibility study

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Stephanie D. Leifer; Jacklyn R. Green; Tibor S. Balint; Ram Manvi

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents the findings from a study to evaluate the feasibility of a radioisotope power system (RPS) combined with active cooling to enable a long-duration venus surface mission. On-board power with active cooling technology featured prominently in both. the national research council's decadal survey and in the 2006 NASA solar system exploration roadmap as mission enabling for the exploration

  4. NASA's New Horizons Mission to Pluto and Beyond

    E-print Network

    Throop, Henry

    Radio NASA's New Horizons Mission to Pluto and Beyond Dr. Henry Throop!! University of Pretoria,Venus, Earth, Mars #12;Jupiter Saturn Uranus Jupiter Saturn Uranus Neptune Pluto Sun Our Solar System Mercury,Venus, Earth, Mars #12;Kuiper Belt Jupiter Saturn Uranus Jupiter Saturn Uranus Neptune Pluto Sun Our Solar

  5. Long-Lived Venus Lander Conceptual Design: How To Keep It Cool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dyson, Ridger W.; Schmitz, Paul C.; Penswick, L. Barry; Bruder, Geoffrey A.

    2009-01-01

    Surprisingly little is known about Venus, our neighboring sister planet in the solar system, due to the challenges of operating in its extremely hot, corrosive, and dense environment. For example, after over two dozen missions to the planet, the longest-lived lander was the Soviet Venera 13, and it only survived two hours on the surface. Several conceptual Venus mission studies have been formulated in the past two decades proposing lander architectures that potentially extend lander lifetime. Most recently, the Venus Science and Technology Definition Team (STDT) was commissioned by NASA to study a Venus Flagship Mission potentially launching in the 2020- 2025 time-frame; the reference lander of this study is designed to survive for only a few hours more than Venera 13 launched back in 1981! Since Cytherean mission planners lack a viable approach to a long-lived surface architecture, specific scientific objectives outlined in the National Science Foundation Decadal Survey and Venus Exploration Advisory Group final report cannot be completed. These include: mapping the mineralogy and composition of the surface on a planetary scale determining the age of various rock samples on Venus, searching for evidence of changes in interior dynamics (seismometry) and its impact on climate and many other key observations that benefit with time scales of at least a full Venus day (Le. daylight/night cycle). This report reviews those studies and recommends a hybrid lander architecture that can survive for at least one Venus day (243 Earth days) by incorporating selective Stirling multi-stage active cooling and hybrid thermoacoustic power.

  6. Venus methane and water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donahue, T. M.; Hodges, R. R.

    1993-04-01

    Data collected by the Pioneer Venus Large Probe Neutral Mass Spectrometer are presented and discussed. Results indicate the presence of a large amount of methane in the Venus atmosphere from 60 km to the surface. Deuterium transfer from atmospheric HDO to poorly deuterated methane may account for the puzzling apparent gradient in the water vapor mixing ration below 10 km. Deuterium transfer within the mass spectrometer may cause reduction in the apparent ratio of HDO to H2O. Accounting for the deuterium atoms leads to a revised water vapor mixing ratio of 28 ppm. Arguments against the methane detected being purely atmospheric are overwhelming. The methane may have been generated by a reaction between a highly deuterated atmospheric constituent and a poorly deuterated instrumental contaminant.

  7. (abstract) Venus Gravity Field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Konopliv, A. S.; Sjogren, W. L.

    1995-01-01

    A global gravity field model of Venus to degree and order 75 (5772 spherical harmonic coefficients) has been estimated from Doppler radio tracking of the orbiting spacecraft Pioneer Venus Orbiter (1979-1992) and Magellan (1990-1994). After the successful aerobraking of Magellan, a near circular polar orbit was attained and relatively uniform gravity field resolution (approximately 200 km) was obtained with formal uncertainties of a few milligals. Detailed gravity for several highland features are displayed as gravity contours overlaying colored topography. The positive correlation of typography with gravity is very high being unlike that of the Earth, Moon, and Mars. The amplitudes are Earth-like, but have significantly different gravity-topography ratios for different features. Global gravity, geoid, and isostatic anomaly maps as well as the admittance function are displayed.

  8. Magellan unveils Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Lerner, E.J.

    1991-07-01

    Images obtained after an eight month Venusian year, during which the radar mapper Magellan surveyed nearly all of Venus, are described. It is observed that, instead of rigid plates moving as on earth, Venus appears covered with plumes of hot upwellings that dome out over hundreds or thousands of kilometers, feeding a continuous volcanic resurfacing of the planet. Although the Venusian surface is changing relatively rapidly by vulcanism and tectonic processes, the Magellan images make it clear that erosion is very slow. It is seen that some of the lava flows are highly fluid, etching narrow channels for hundreds of kilometers through the crust. Magellan also revealed some peculiarly Venusian formations, the tesserated areas where ridges and faults crosshatch the region into large blocks.

  9. Making the Venus Concept Watch 1.0

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balint, Tibor S.; Melchiorri, Julian P.

    2014-08-01

    Over the past year we have celebrated the 50th anniversary of planetary exploration, which started with the Venus flyby of Mariner-2; and the 35th anniversary of the Pioneer-Venus multi-probe mission where one large and three small probes descended to the surface of Venus, encountering extreme environmental conditions. At the surface of Venus the temperature is about 460 °C, and the pressure is 92 bar, with a highly corrosive super-critical CO2 atmosphere. At a Venusian altitude of 50 km the pressure and temperature conditions are near Earth-like, but the clouds carry sulfuric acid droplets. Deep probe missions to Jupiter and Saturn, targeting the 100 bar pressure depth encounter similar pressure and temperature conditions as the Pioneer-Venus probes did. Mitigating these environments is highly challenging and requires special considerations for designs and materials. While assessing such space mission concepts, we have found that there is an overlap between the extreme environments in planetary atmospheres and the environments experienced by deep-sea explorers back on Earth. Consequently, the mitigation approaches could be also similar between planetary probes and diver watches. For example, both need to tolerate about 100 bar of pressure-although high temperatures are not factors on Earth. Mitigating these environments, the potential materials are: titanium for the probe and the watch housing; sapphire for the window and glass; resin impregnated woven carbon fiber for the aeroshell's thermal protection system and for the face of the watch; and nylon ribbon for the parachute and for the watch band. Planetary probes also utilize precision watches; thus there is yet another crosscutting functionality with diver watches. Our team, from the Innovation Design Engineering Program of the Royal College of Art, has designed and built a concept watch to commemorate these historical events, while highlighting advances in manufacturing processes over the past three to five decades, relevant to both future planetary mission designs and can be used to produce deep diver watches. In this paper we describe our design considerations; give a brief overview of the extreme environments these components would experience on both Venus and Earth; the manufacturing techniques and materials we used to build the Venus Watch; and its outreach potential to bring a distant concept of planetary exploration closer to Earth. We will also address lessons learned from this project and new ideas forward, for the next generation of this concept design.

  10. In conjunction with Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butrica, Andrew J.

    1997-12-01

    This article traces the historical development of the scientific endeavor known today as planetary radar astronomy. Developments in this field, such as the precise determination of the value of the astronomical unit (AU), or the Earth's mean distance to the sun, were actually accomplished by electrical engineers at laboratories set up to conduct military R&D, not astronomical inquiry. The development of the Millstone Hill radar in Westford, MA, by MIT engineers at Lincoln Laboratories is reviewed. The Millstone Hill radar was eventually used to bounce radio waves off of the planet Venus once a method was determined to separate the return echoes from the background noise. By integrating the Venus-return pulses over time through digital signal processing equipment assembled by MIT doctoral students Robert Price and Paul E. Green, Jr., the Millstone Hill radar could detect radar signals bounced off Venus. Experiments conducted using a maser installed at Millstone Hill during a time of inferior conjunction with Venus on February 10 and 12, 1958 are reported. The Lincoln Laboratory results were confirmed by radio astronomers at England's Jodrell Bank observatory during the following conjunction in September 1959. In March of 1961, by way of Project Echo satellite communications, the results obtained in 1958 and 1959 were able to be corroborated by the experimenters. Due to these developments, a more precise determination of the AU was instigated by the International Astronomical Union as a result of experiments conducted by Lincoln Laboratories and JPL in March 1961, which found measurements of the AU which agreed very closely to one another. Thus, the then 50-year-old system of astronomical constants was on its way to being revised, and a new value of the AU, 149,600,000 km, was adopted at a general meeting in Hamburg in 1964, thanks to the new science of planetary radar astronomy.

  11. Ice On Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    This resource is part of the Science Education Gateway (SEGway) project, funded by NASA, which is a national consortium of scientists, museums, and educators working together to bring the latest science to students, teachers, and the general public. Is there ice on Venus? If so, what kind of ice is it? In this activity, students find the answers to these questions by using internet resources. The teacher's page contains teaching strategies, vocabulary, homework ideas, and assessment possibilities.

  12. Does Venus breathe?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dobrovolskis, A. R.

    1983-06-01

    It is speculated that the periodic absorption and desorption of CO2 by the soil of Venus may buffer daily temperature, pressure and wind variations in the lower atmosphere, effectively eliminating the net tidal torque on the atmosphere. The redistribution of mass would still generate a sizable torque, however, which may serve as a balance for that which is caused by the gravitationally induced tide. This novel tidal mechanism represents a somewhat weaker competitor to the atmospheric tides which have previously been studied.

  13. Simulated Craters on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahnle, Kevin; Cuzzi, Jeffrey N. (Technical Monitor)

    1995-01-01

    The thick atmosphere of Venus prevents all but the largest impactors from cratering the surface. The number of small craters on Venus provides an interesting, and statistically significant test of models for the disruption and deceleration of impacting bodies. Here we compare Monte Carlo simulated crater distributions to the observed crater distribution on Venus. The simulation assumes: (1) a power law mass distribution for impactors of the form N(sub cum) alpha m (exp-b) where b=0.8; (2) isotropic incidence angles; (3) velocity at the top of the atmosphere of 20 kilometers per second (more realistic velocity distributions are also considered); (4) Schmidt-Housen crater scaling, modified such that only the normal component of the impact velocity contributes to cratering, and using crater slumping as parameterized (5) and modern populations (60% carbonaceous, 40% stone, 3% iron) and fluxes of asteroids. We use our previously developed model for the disruption and deceleration of large bodies striking thick planetary atmospheres to calculate the impact velocity at the surface as a function of impactor mass, incident velocity, and incident angle. We use a drag coefficient c(sub d) =1; other parameters are as described in Chyba et al. We set a low velocity cutoff of 500 meters per second on crater-forming impacts. Venus's craters are nicely matched by the simulated craters produced by 700 million years of striking asteroids. Shown for comparison are the simulated craters produced by incident comets over the same period, where for comets we have assumed b=0.7 and a flux at 10(exp 14) g 30% that of asteroids. Systematic uncertainties in crater scaling and crater slumping may make the surface age uncertain by a factor of two.

  14. Three ages of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Charles A.; Coombs, Cassandra R.

    1989-01-01

    A central question for any planet is the age of its surface. Based on comparative planetological arguments, Venus should be as young and active as the Earth (Wood and Francis). The detection of probable impact craters in the Venera radar images provides a tool for estimating the age of the surface of Venus. Assuming somewhat different crater production rates, Bazilevskiy et al. derived an age of 1 + or - 0.5 billion years, and Schaber et al. and Wood and Francis estimated an age of 200 to 400 million years. The known impact craters are not randomly distributed, however, thus some area must be older and others younger than this average age. Ages were derived for major geologic units on Venus using the Soviet catalog of impact craters (Bazilevskiy et al.), and the most accessible geologic unit map (Bazilevskiy). The crater counts are presented for (diameters greater than 20 km), areas, and crater densities for the 7 terrain units and coronae. The procedure for examining the distribution of craters is superior to the purely statistical approaches of Bazilevskiy et al. and Plaut and Arvidson because the bins are larger (average size 16 x 10(6) sq km) and geologically significant. Crater densities define three distinct groups: relatively heavily cratered (Lakshmi, mountain belts), moderately cratered (smooth and rolling plains, ridge belts, and tesserae), and essentially uncratered (coronae and domed uplands). Following Schaber et al., Grieve's terrestrial cratering rate of 5.4 + or - 2.7 craters greater than 20 km/10(9) yrs/10(6) sq km was used to calculate ages for the geologic units on Venus. To improve statistics, the data was aggregated into the three crater density groups, deriving the ages. For convenience, the three similar age groups are given informal time stratigraphic unit names, from youngest to oldest: Ulfrunian, Sednaian, Lakshmian.

  15. Evaluation of Long Duration Flight on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Colozza, Anthony J.

    2006-01-01

    An analysis was performed to evaluate the potential of utilizing either an airship or aircraft as a flight platform for long duration flight within the atmosphere of Venus. In order to achieve long-duration flight, the power system for the vehicle had to be capable of operating for extended periods of time. To accomplish these, two types of power systems were considered, a solar energy-based power system utilizing a photovoltaic array as the main power source and a radioisotope heat source power system utilizing a Stirling engine as the heat conversion device. Both types of vehicles and power systems were analyzed to determine their flight altitude range. This analysis was performed for a station-keeping mission where the vehicle had to maintain a flight over a location on the ground. This requires the vehicle to be capable of flying faster than the wind speed at a particular altitude. An analysis was also performed to evaluate the altitude range and maximum duration for a vehicle that was not required to maintain station over a specified location. The results of the analysis show that each type of flight vehicle and power system was capable of flight within certain portions of Venus s atmosphere. The aircraft, both solar and radioisotope power proved to be the most versatile and provided the greatest range of coverage both for station-keeping and non-station-keeping missions.

  16. Survey of the spectral properties of turbulence in the solar wind, the magnetospheres of Venus and Earth, at solar minimum and maximum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Echim, Marius M.

    2014-05-01

    In the framework of the European FP7 project STORM ("Solar system plasma Turbulence: Observations, inteRmittency and Multifractals") we analyze the properties of turbulence in various regions of the solar system, for the minimum and respectively maximum of the solar activity. The main scientific objective of STORM is to advance the understanding of the turbulent energy transfer, intermittency and multifractals in space plasmas. Specific analysis methods are applied on magnetic field and plasma data provided by Ulysses, Venus Express and Cluster, as well as other solar system missions (e.g. Giotto, Cassini). In this paper we provide an overview of the spectral properties of turbulence derived from Power Spectral Densities (PSD) computed in the solar wind (from Ulysses, Cluster, Venus Express) and at the interface of planetary magnetospheres with the solar wind (from Venus Express, Cluster). Ulysses provides data in the solar wind between 1992 and 2008, out of the ecliptic, at radial distances ranging between 1.3 and 5.4 AU. We selected only those Ulysses data that satisfy a consolidated set of selection criteria able to identify "pure" fast and slow wind. We analyzed Venus Express data close to the orbital apogee, in the solar wind, at 0.72 AU, and in the Venus magnetosheath. We investigated Cluster data in the solar wind (for time intervals not affected by planetary ions effects), the magnetosheath and few crossings of other key magnetospheric regions (cusp, plasma sheet). We organize our PSD results in three solar wind data bases (one for the solar maximum, 1999-2001, two for the solar minimum, 1997-1998 and respectively, 2007-2008), and two planetary databases (one for the solar maximum, 2000-2001, that includes PSD obtained in the terrestrial magnetosphere, and one for the solar minimum, 2007-2008, that includes PSD obtained in the terrestrial and Venus magnetospheres and magnetosheaths). In addition to investigating the properties of turbulence for the minimum and maximum of the solar cycle we also analyze the spectral similarities and differences between fast and slow wind turbulence. We emphasize the importance of our data survey and analysis in the context of understanding the solar wind turbulence, the exploitation of data bases and as a first step towards developing a (virtual) laboratory for studying solar system plasma turbulence. Research supported by the European Community's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no 313038/STORM, and a grant of the Romanian Ministry of National Education, CNCS - UEFISCDI, project number PN-II-ID-PCE-2012-4-0418.

  17. Venus Surface Sample Return: A Weighty High-Pressure Challenge

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sweetser, Ted; Cameron, Jonathon; Chen, Gun-Shing; Cutts, Jim; Gershman, Bob; Gilmore, Martha S.; Hall, Jeffrey L.; Kerzhanovich, Viktor; McRonald, Angus; Nilsen, Erik

    1999-01-01

    A mission to return a sample to Earth from the surface of Venus faces a multitude of multidisciplinary challenges. In addition to the complications inherent in any sample return mission, Venus presents the additional difficulties of a deep gravity well essentially equivalent to Earth's and a hot-house atmosphere which generates extremes of high temperature, density, and pressure unmatched at any other known surface in the solar system. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory of the California Institute of Technology recently conducted a study to develop an architecture for such a mission; a major goal of this study was to identify technology developments which would need to be pursued in order to make such a mission feasible at a cost much less than estimated in previous. The final design of this mission is years away but the study results presented here show our current mission architecture as it applies to a particular mission opportunity, give a summary of the engineering and science trades which were made in the process of developing it, and identify the main technology development efforts needed.

  18. The thermal conditions of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zharkov, Vladimir N.; Solomatov, V. S.

    1991-01-01

    Models of Venus' thermal evolution are examined. The following subject areas are covered: (1) modified approximation of parameterized convection; (2) description of the model; (3) numerical results and asymptotic solution of the MAPC equations; (4) magnetism and the thermal regime of the cores of Earth and Venus; and (5) the thermal regime of the Venusian crust.

  19. A radar tour of Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    J. K. Beatty

    1985-01-01

    The surface of Venus is briefly characterized in a summary of results obtained by the Soviet Venera 15 and 16 8-cm synthetic-aperture radars, IR radiometers, and radar altimeters. A series of radar images, mainly from Kotelnikov et al. (1984), are presented and discussed, and the descent vehicles to be released by the two Vega spacecraft as they pass Venus in

  20. The magnetic barrier at Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    T. L. Zhang; J. G. Luhmann; C.T. Russell

    1991-01-01

    The magnetic barrier at Venus is a region within which the magnetic pressure dominates all other pressure contributions. The barrier is formed in the inner region of the dayside magnetosheath to transfer solar wind momentum flux to the ionosphere. Passes through the dayside magnetosheath and ionopause with Pioneer Venus have allowed us to probe the magnetic barrier directly. These passes

  1. Pioneer Venus radar mapper experiment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pettengill, G.H.; Ford, P.G.; Brown, W.E.; Kaula, W.M.; Keller, C.H.; Masursky, H.; McGill, G.E.

    1979-01-01

    Altimetry and radar scattering data for Venus, obtained from 10 of the first 13 orbits of the Pioneer Venus orbiter, have disclosed what appears to be a rift valley having vertical relief of up to 7 kilometers, as well as a neighboring, gently rolling plain. Planetary oblateness appears unlikely to exceed 112500 and may be substantially smaller. Copyright ?? 1979 AAAS.

  2. Stagnant lid convection on Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    V. S. Solomatov; L.-N. Moresi

    1996-01-01

    The effect of strongly temperature-dependent viscosity on convection in the interior of Venus is studied systematically with the help of finite element numerical models. For viscosity contrasts satisfying experimental constraints on the rheology of rocks, Venus is likely to be in the regime of stagnant lid convection. This regime is characterized by the formation of a slowly creeping, very viscous

  3. Observations Concerning the Planet Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Francesco Bianchini; S. Beaumont; P. Fay

    1996-01-01

    In the early part of the eighteenth century, Francesco Bianchini of Verona turned his primitive telescope - a refractor of only a few centimetres aperture but with an enormous focal length of around 20 metres - on the planet Venus. He recorded some of the first telescopic observations of Venus, outstanding in terms of care and accuracy. Bianchini determined the

  4. Ballistic mode Mercury orbiter mission opportunity handbook

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hollenbeck, G. R.; Roos, D. G.; Lewis, P. S.

    1973-01-01

    Significant payloads in Mercury orbit can be achieved through use of high-thrust, chemical propulsion systems on ballistic trajectories. Interplanetary trajectory characteristics are presented, for Venus swingbys to Mercury, were multiple revolutions about the sun are allowed on each leg to provide low energy mission in 1977, 1980, 1985 and 1988. Guidance and navigation results are shown for each opportunity. Additionally, the use of midcourse maneuvers and multiple Venus swingbys are explored as means of further reducing the energy requirements.

  5. Non-Cooled Power System for Venus Lander

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salazar, Denise; Landis, Geoffrey A.; Colozza, Anthony J.

    2014-01-01

    The Planetary Science Decadal Survey of 2013-2022 stated that the exploration of Venus is of significant interest. Studying the seismic activity of the planet is of particular importance because the findings can be compared to the seismic activity of Earth. Further, the geological and atmospheric properties of Venus will shed light into the past and future of Earth. This paper presents a radioisotope power system (RPS) design for a small low-power Venus lander. The feasibility of the new power system is then compared to that of primary batteries. A requirement for the power source system is to avoid moving parts in order to not interfere with the primary objective of the mission - to collect data about the seismic activity of Venus using a seismometer. The target mission duration of the lander is 117 days, a significant leap from Venera 13, the longest-lived lander on the surface of Venus, which survived for 2 hours. One major assumption for this mission design is that the power source system will not provide cooling to the other components of the lander. This assumption is based on high-temperature electronics technology that will enable the electronics and components of the lander to operate at Venus surface temperature. For the proposed RPS, a customized General Purpose Heat Source Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (GPHSRTG) is designed and analyzed. The GPHS-RTG is chosen primarily because it has no moving parts and it is capable of operating for long duration missions on the order of years. This power system is modeled as a spherical structure for a fundamental thermal analysis. The total mass and electrical output of the system are calculated to be 24 kilograms and 26 Watts, respectively. An alternative design for a battery-based power system uses Sodium Sulfur batteries. To deliver a similar electrical output for 117 days, the battery mass is calculated to be 234 kilograms. Reducing mission duration or power required will reduce the required battery mass. Finally, the advantages and disadvantages of both power systems with regard to science return, risk, and cost are briefly compared. The design of the radioisotope power system is considerably riskier because it is novel and would require additional years of further refinement, manufacturing, safety analysis, and testing that the primary batteries do not need. However, the lifetime of the radioisotope power system makes its science return more promising.

  6. Atmospheric evolution on Venus Bruce Fegley, Jr.

    E-print Network

    Fegley Jr., Bruce

    1 Atmospheric evolution on Venus Bruce Fegley, Jr. Planetary Chemistry Laboratory Department and Ancient Environments Edited by Vivien Gornitz January 2004 #12;2 ATMOSPHERIC EVOLUTION ON VENUS Overview Venus and Earth are generally regarded as sister planets because Venus is the planet with mass, size

  7. Basalt-Atmosphere Interactions on Venus -

    E-print Network

    Treiman, Allan H.

    Basalt-Atmosphere Interactions on Venus - The Rocks' Perspective Allan Treiman Susanne Schwenzer on Venus rock-atmosphere interactions ­ 1. Basalt-atmosphere reaction theory ­ 2. Basalt-atmosphere reaction experiment ­ 3. Carbonate-sulfate magma in Venus' crust? ­ 4. Carbonate formation in Venus' crust

  8. Current Status of Venus orbiter Akatsuki

    E-print Network

    Widemann, Thomas

    Current Status of Venus orbiter Akatsuki Takeshi Imamura (JAXA, Japan) and AKATSUKI Project Team #12;Venus orbiter Akatsuki ·! Science target : `Weather of Venus' ­! Mechanism of `super was launched in May 2010. The Venus orbit insertion scheduled for December 2010 has failed. Now Akatsuki

  9. VENUS-2 Experimental Benchmark Analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Pavlovichev, A.M.

    2001-09-28

    The VENUS critical facility is a zero power reactor located at SCK-CEN, Mol, Belgium, which for the VENUS-2 experiment utilized a mixed-oxide core with near-weapons-grade plutonium. In addition to the VENUS-2 Core, additional computational variants based on each type of fuel cycle VENUS-2 core (3.3 wt. % UO{sub 2}, 4.0 wt. % UO{sub 2}, and 2.0/2.7 wt.% MOX) were also calculated. The VENUS-2 critical configuration and cell variants have been calculated with MCU-REA, which is a continuous energy Monte Carlo code system developed at Russian Research Center ''Kurchatov Institute'' and is used extensively in the Fissile Materials Disposition Program. The calculations resulted in a k{sub eff} of 0.99652 {+-} 0.00025 and relative pin powers within 2% for UO{sub 2} pins and 3% for MOX pins of the experimental values.

  10. Hansen, V.L., and Young, D.A., 2007, Venus's evolution: A synthesis, in Cloos, M., Carlson, W.D., Gilbert, M.C., Liou, J.G., and Sorensen, S.S., eds., Convergent Margin Terranes and Associated Regions: A Tribute to W.G. Ernst: Geological Society of Americ

    E-print Network

    Hansen, Vicki

    255 Hansen, V.L., and Young, D.A., 2007, Venus's evolution: A synthesis, in Cloos, M., Carlson, W. Geological Society of America Special Paper 419 2007 Venus's evolution: A synthesis V.L. Hansen Department (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) Magellan mission to Venus was the preservation of ~970

  11. Ground-based Observations of Venus in the Ultraviolet and Infrared Light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kowollik, S.; Gährken, B.; Gerstheimer, R.; Fiedler, M.; Fischer, D.; Sohl, F.

    2007-08-01

    Parallel to the Venus Express mission, ESA has initiated an observing campaign that incorporates a number of professional and amateur observers. Since the cameras onboard Venus Express have only a small field of view, ground based observations can provide important context information on Venus's dense atmosphere as a whole. Permanent observations by professional and amateur telescopes are therefore useful, e.g., to monitor daily changes occurring in the very dynamic upper part of the Venusian atmosphere. Typically, apertures of amateur telescopes vary between 8 and 16 inches, but occasionally Newton- and Cassegrain-type telescopes with apertures from 24 up to even 47 inches are in use at large public observatories. During the last couple of years, engaged amateur astronomers have benefited from the rapid development in the field of video-astronomy. By selecting and adding thousands of only shortly-exposed video-frames, it is possible to freeze atmospheric turbulence, thereby circumventing problems commonly attributed to devastating atmospheric seeing conditions. With that method of "Lucky Imaging", it is possible to nearly achieve the theoretical limit of telescopic resolution. Furthermore, cheaper and more efficient UV-filters in association with increasingly sensitive optical systems put amateur astronomers in a position to resolve weak atmospheric details better than one arc second in apparent diameter. The most preferred UV-filter, made by the manufacturer Schueler/USA, has a distinct transmission window between a wavelength of 330 and 400 nm. We present images that show typical V- and Y-shaped structures of the Venusian atmosphere that are generally attributed to an unknown UV-absorber; some images also reveal white and dark streaks and bright polar regions. First observations using a RG1000 filter have been performed in the infrared spectral range. Preliminary analyses suggest that structures visible in the infrared have an extremely weak contrast and appear to be much smaller than those seen in ultraviolet light. Several observers in Germany are engaged in the Planetary Section of the Association of Amateur Astronomers (VdS). A number of those have gained considerable experience in image processing, and were able to contribute to scrutinize and sort incoming data from current observing and remote sensing campaigns. Therefore, we are very interested to access additional images obtained during parallel observations with other telescopes, thereby optimizing observational techniques and improving the international coordination of future Venus observation campaigns.

  12. Transition Parameter applied to boundaries at Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guymer, Gemma; Grande, Manuel; Fraenz, Marcus; Barabash, Stas; Zhang, Tielong; Pinter, Balazs

    2015-04-01

    We have used a transition parameter to characterise magnetospheric boundaries at Venus. The technique allows sparsely sampled data to be related to a variable and rapidly moving structure, such as the Bow shock, Magnetic Pile-up boundary or Ion Composition boundary. The solar minimum in 2009 was one of the lowest on record, and by 2006 minimum conditions were already in place. Utilising the ASPERA-4 Ion Mass Analyzer data and the paired magnetometers on board Venus Express the relation between the ions and flux ropes are investigated, in order to determine whether they a part of the replenishment or loss of the Venusian atmosphere. First, by using the magnetometer to identify the flux rope in the ionosphere Wei H.Y. (2006 -personal communication) and then by using the IMA to observe coincident composition changes. The altitude of ropes is dependent on the time spent in the ionosphere, with older ropes increasing weight and dropping weight. However, the occurrence of flux ropes and a mixed populations of ionospheric and solar wind ions is coincidental. Venus boundaries are examined during 2007, and 2011 / 2012 going toward solar maximum. A new use of the transition parameter is put forward; to aid with boundary placement. The bow shock is located with an automatic algorithm and this is then compared with previous models, giving a sense of Venus reaction to solar activity. It is shown that the bow shock position is largely unchanged. The ion composition boundary and the magnetic pile-up boundary are also located. They coincide to within an ion sampling period, but transition parameter analysis reveals that they are not coincident, with the ion composition boundary inside the pileup boundary.

  13. Thermal design and development of a planetary probe - Pioneer Venus large probe

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hennis, L. A.; Varon, M. N.

    1978-01-01

    The thermal control system developed for the Large Atmospheric Probe of the Pioneer Venus Multiprobe Mission is described. The scope of the thermal control task requires maintaining the probe internal equipment shelf temperatures within a nonoperating range of -40 to 122 F and an operating range of -4 to 122 F during three different mission phases: (1) preseparation, the transit phase of the mission when the probe is attached to the Multiprobe Spacecraft Bus, (2) postseparation, the free-flight cruise phase of the mission following release from the Bus, and (3) descent, the phase of the mission from preentry equipment turn-on to impact on the Venus surface. Thermal control for these phases is achieved by a combination of passive thermal finishes on the probe exterior surfaces and heaters mounted on the equipment shelves. Verification of the adequacy of the total thermal design to meet all mission requirements has been completed.

  14. Magellan - Mission summary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saunders, R. S.; Pettengill, G. H.

    1991-04-01

    The Magellan radar mapping mission is in the process of producing a global, high-resolution image and altimetry data set of Venus. Despite initial communications problems, few data gaps have occurred. Analysis of Magellan data is in the initial stages. The radar system data are of high quality, and the planned performance is being achieved in terms of spatial resolution and geometric and radiometric accuracy. Image performance exceeds expectations, and the image quality and mosaickability are extremely good. Future plans for the mission include obtaining gravity data, filling gaps in the initial map, and conducting special studies with the radar.

  15. Using the transit of Venus to probe the upper planetary atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Reale, Fabio; Gambino, Angelo F; Micela, Giuseppina; Maggio, Antonio; Widemann, Thomas; Piccioni, Giuseppe

    2015-01-01

    During a planetary transit, atoms with high atomic number absorb short-wavelength radiation in the upper atmosphere, and the planet should appear larger during a primary transit observed in high-energy bands than in the optical band. Here we measure the radius of Venus with subpixel accuracy during the transit in 2012 observed in the optical, ultraviolet and soft X-rays with Hinode and Solar Dynamics Observatory missions. We find that, while Venus's optical radius is about 80?km larger than the solid body radius (the top of clouds and haze), the radius increases further by >70?km in the extreme ultraviolet and soft X-rays. This measures the altitude of the densest ion layers of Venus's ionosphere (CO2 and CO), useful for planning missions in situ, and a benchmark case for detecting transits of exoplanets in high-energy bands with future missions, such as the ESA Athena. PMID:26102562

  16. Geologic Map of the Mylitta Fluctus Quadrangle (V-61), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ivanov, Mikhail A.; Head, James W., III

    2006-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The Magellan Mission The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan Mission objectives included: (1) improving knowledge of the geological processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology, and (2) improving the knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Magellan spacecraft carried a 12.6-cm radar system to map the surface of Venus. The transmitter and receiver systems were used to collect three data sets: (1) synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of the surface, (2) passive microwave thermal emission observations, and (3) measurements of the backscattered power at small angles of incidence, which were processed to yield altimetric data. Radar imaging, altimetric, and radiometric mapping of the Venusian surface was done in mission cycles 1, 2, and 3 from September 1990 until September 1992. Ninety-eight percent of the surface was mapped with radar resolution on the order of 120 meters. The SAR observations were projected to a 75-m nominal horizontal resolution, and these full-resolution data compose the image base used in geologic mapping. The primary polarization mode was horizontal-transmit, horizontal-receive (HH), but additional data for selected areas were collected for the vertical polarization sense. Incidence angles varied between about 20? and 45?. High resolution Doppler tracking of the spacecraft took place from September 1992 through October 1994 (mission cycles 4, 5, 6). Approximately 950 orbits of high-resolution gravity observations were obtained between September 1992 and May 1993 while Magellan was in an elliptical orbit with a periapsis near 175 km and an apoapsis near 8,000 km. An additional 1,500 orbits were obtained following orbit-circularization in mid-1993. These data exist as a 75? by 75? harmonic field.

  17. Current status of the PLANET-C Venus orbiter design

    Microsoft Academic Search

    N. Ishii; H. Yamakawa; S. Sawai; M. Shida; T. Hashimoto; M. Nakamura; T. Imamura

    2002-01-01

    This paper presents the current status of the ISAS PLANET-C mission, which were studied and proposed by the ISAS (Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, Japan) Venus Exploration Working Group. The launch is scheduled in the 2007- 2008 time frame and ISAS' three-staged M-V is postulated for the launch vehicle. The primary scientific objective of the VCO is to study

  18. Tectonic resurfacing of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Malin, Michael C.; Grimm, Robert E.; Herrick, Robert R.

    1993-01-01

    Impact crater distributions and morphologies have traditionally played an important role in unraveling the geologic histories of terrestrial objects, and Venus has proved no exception. The key observations are: mean crater retention age about 500 Ma; apparently random spatial distribution; modest proportion (17 percent) of modified craters; and preferential association of modified craters with areas of low crater density. The simplest interpretation of these data alone is that Venus experienced global resurfacing (assumed to be largely volcanic) prior to 500 Ma, after which time resurfacing rates decreased dramatically. This scenario does not totally exclude present geological activity: some resurfacing and crater obliteration is occurring on part of the planet, but at rates much smaller than on Earth. An alternative endmember model holds that resurfacing is also spatially randomly distributed. Resurfacing of about 1 sq km/yr eliminates craters such that a typical portion of the surface has an age of 500 Ma, but actual ages range from zero to about 1000 Ma. Monte Carlo simulation indicates that the typical resurfacing 'patch' cannot exceed about 500 km in diameter without producing a crater distribution more heterogeneous than observed. Volcanic or tectonic processes within these patches must be locally intense to be able to obliterate craters completely and leave few modified. In this abstract, we describe how global geologic mapping may be used to test resurfacing hypotheses. We present preliminary evidence that the dominant mode of resurfacing on Venus is tectonism, not volcanism, and that this process must be ongoing today. Lastly, we outline a conceptual model in which to understand the relationship between global tectonics and crater distribution and preservation.

  19. Stagnation Point Radiative Heating Relations for Venus Entry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tauber, Michael E.; Palmer, Grant E.; Prabhu, Dinesh K.

    2012-01-01

    Improved analytic expressions for calculating the stagnation point radiative heating during entry into the atmosphere of Venus have been developed. These analytic expressions can be incorporated into entry trajectory simulation codes. Together with analytical expressions for convective heating at the stagnation point, the time-integrated total heat load at the stagnation point is used in determining the thickness of protective material required, and hence the mass of the fore body heatshield of uniform thickness.

  20. The monopropellant hydrazine propulsion subsystem for the Pioneer Venus spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barker, F. C.

    1979-01-01

    The Pioneer Venus Orbiter and the Multiprobe spacecraft propulsion subsystems and their performance are presented. Monopropellant hydrazine subsystems on each spacecraft provided the capability to spin up the spacecraft after separation and perform all spin rate, velocity, and attitude changes required by the control subsystem to satisfy mission objectives. The propulsion subsystem provides thrust on demand by supplying anhydrous hydrazine from the propellant tanks through manifolds, filters and valves to the thrust chamber assemblies where the hydrazine is catalytically decomposed and expanded in a conical nozzle. The subsystems consist of seven 1 lbf thrusters for the Orbiter and six 1 lbf thrusters for the multiprobe which are isolated by two latch valves from the two propellant tanks so that two redundant thruster clusters are provided to ensure mission completion in the event of a single point failure. The propellant feed system is of all-welded construction to minimize weight and leakage and titanium is used as the primary material of construction. The multiprobe burned up on entering the Venus atmosphere with enough propellant left for the mission and the Orbiter was inserted into Venus orbit with enough propellant remaining for more than 2 earth years of orbital operations.

  1. Little or no solar wind enters Venus' atmosphere at solar minimum.

    PubMed

    Zhang, T L; Delva, M; Baumjohann, W; Auster, H-U; Carr, C; Russell, C T; Barabash, S; Balikhin, M; Kudela, K; Berghofer, G; Biernat, H K; Lammer, H; Lichtenegger, H; Magnes, W; Nakamura, R; Schwingenschuh, K; Volwerk, M; Vörös, Z; Zambelli, W; Fornacon, K-H; Glassmeier, K-H; Richter, I; Balogh, A; Schwarzl, H; Pope, S A; Shi, J K; Wang, C; Motschmann, U; Lebreton, J-P

    2007-11-29

    Venus has no significant internal magnetic field, which allows the solar wind to interact directly with its atmosphere. A field is induced in this interaction, which partially shields the atmosphere, but we have no knowledge of how effective that shield is at solar minimum. (Our current knowledge of the solar wind interaction with Venus is derived from measurements at solar maximum.) The bow shock is close to the planet, meaning that it is possible that some solar wind could be absorbed by the atmosphere and contribute to the evolution of the atmosphere. Here we report magnetic field measurements from the Venus Express spacecraft in the plasma environment surrounding Venus. The bow shock under low solar activity conditions seems to be in the position that would be expected from a complete deflection by a magnetized ionosphere. Therefore little solar wind enters the Venus ionosphere even at solar minimum. PMID:18046399

  2. Naming the newly found landforms on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Batson, R. M.; Russell, J. F.

    1991-01-01

    The mapping of Venus is unique in the history of cartigraphy; never has so much territory been discovered and mapped in so short a period of time. Therefore, in the interest of international scientific communication, there is a unique urgency to the development of a system of names for surface features on Venus. The process began with the naming of features seen on radar images taken from Earth and continued through mapping expeditions of the U.S. and U.S.S.R. However, the Magellan Mission resolves features twenty-five times smaller than those mapped previously, and its radar data will cover an area nearly equivalent to that of the continents and the sea-floors of the Earth combined. The International Astronomical Union (IAU) was charged with the formal endorsement of names of features on the planets. Proposed names are collected, approved, and applied through the IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature (WGPSN) and its task groups, prior to IAU approval by the IAU General Assembly. Names approved by the WGPSN and its task groups, prior to final approval may be used on published maps and articles, provided that their provisional nature is stipulated. The IAU has established themes for the names to be used on each of the planets; names of historical and mythological women are used on Venus. Names of political entities and those identified with active religions are not acceptable, and a person must have been deceased for three years or more to be considered. Any interested person may propose a name for consideration by the IAU.

  3. Giant radiating dyke swarms on Earth and Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    R. E. Ernst; J. W. Head; E. Parfitt; E. Grosfils; L. Wilson

    1995-01-01

    Concentrations of dykes of basic composition emplaced in the same igneous episode or along similar trends are known as mafic dyke swarms and they occur in a wide variety of environments and over a wide range of scales on Earth. Recent radar mapping of Venus has revealed families of linear features interpreted to be the surface expression of near-surface dyke

  4. Venus-Earth-Mars: comparative climatology and the search for life in the solar system.

    PubMed

    Launius, Roger D

    2012-01-01

    Both Venus and Mars have captured the human imagination during the twentieth century as possible abodes of life. Venus had long enchanted humans-all the more so after astronomers realized it was shrouded in a mysterious cloak of clouds permanently hiding the surface from view. It was also the closest planet to Earth, with nearly the same size and surface gravity. These attributes brought myriad speculations about the nature of Venus, its climate, and the possibility of life existing there in some form. Mars also harbored interest as a place where life had or might still exist. Seasonal changes on Mars were interpreted as due to the possible spread and retreat of ice caps and lichen-like vegetation. A core element of this belief rested with the climatology of these two planets, as observed by astronomers, but these ideas were significantly altered, if not dashed during the space age. Missions to Venus and Mars revealed strikingly different worlds. The high temperatures and pressures found on Venus supported a "runaway greenhouse theory," and Mars harbored an apparently lifeless landscape similar to the surface of the Moon. While hopes for Venus as an abode of life ended, the search for evidence of past life on Mars, possibly microbial, remains a central theme in space exploration. This survey explores the evolution of thinking about the climates of Venus and Mars as life-support systems, in comparison to Earth. PMID:25371106

  5. Venus-Earth-Mars: Comparative Climatology and the Search for Life in the Solar System

    PubMed Central

    Launius, Roger D.

    2012-01-01

    Both Venus and Mars have captured the human imagination during the twentieth century as possible abodes of life. Venus had long enchanted humans—all the more so after astronomers realized it was shrouded in a mysterious cloak of clouds permanently hiding the surface from view. It was also the closest planet to Earth, with nearly the same size and surface gravity. These attributes brought myriad speculations about the nature of Venus, its climate, and the possibility of life existing there in some form. Mars also harbored interest as a place where life had or might still exist. Seasonal changes on Mars were interpreted as due to the possible spread and retreat of ice caps and lichen-like vegetation. A core element of this belief rested with the climatology of these two planets, as observed by astronomers, but these ideas were significantly altered, if not dashed during the space age. Missions to Venus and Mars revealed strikingly different worlds. The high temperatures and pressures found on Venus supported a “runaway greenhouse theory,” and Mars harbored an apparently lifeless landscape similar to the surface of the Moon. While hopes for Venus as an abode of life ended, the search for evidence of past life on Mars, possibly microbial, remains a central theme in space exploration. This survey explores the evolution of thinking about the climates of Venus and Mars as life-support systems, in comparison to Earth. PMID:25371106

  6. Short Large-Amplitude Magnetic Structures (SLAMS) at Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Collinson, G. A.; Wilson, L. B.; Sibeck, D. G.; Shane, N.; Zhang, T. L.; Moore, T. E.; Coates, A. J.; Barabash, S.

    2012-01-01

    We present the first observation of magnetic fluctuations consistent with Short Large-Amplitude Magnetic Structures (SLAMS) in the foreshock of the planet Venus. Three monolithic magnetic field spikes were observed by the Venus Express on the 11th of April 2009. The structures were approx.1.5->11s in duration, had magnetic compression ratios between approx.3->6, and exhibited elliptical polarization. These characteristics are consistent with the SLAMS observed at Earth, Jupiter, and Comet Giacobini-Zinner, and thus we hypothesize that it is possible SLAMS may be found at any celestial body with a foreshock.

  7. Venus Exploration Goals, Objectives, Investigations, and Priorities: 2007

    E-print Network

    Atreya, Sushil

    Venus Exploration Goals, Objectives, Investigations, and Priorities: 2007 A Report of the Venus input for planning and prioritizing Venus exploration for the next few decades. VEXAG is chartered scientists and engineers, regularly evaluates Venus exploration goals, objectives, investigations

  8. Venus Data Analysis Program: Directory of Research Projects (1993-1994)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    This directory provides information about the scientific investigations funded by the NASA Venus Data Analysis Program (VDAP) during fiscal year 1993. The VDAP Directory consists of summary sheets from the proposals that were selected by NASA for funding in FY 93. Each summary sheet indicates the title, principal investigator, institution of the investigation, and information related to the objectives of the research activities proposed for FY 93. The objective of the VDAP Program is to advance our understanding of the nature and evolution of Venus. VDAP supports scientific investigation using data obtained from the Magellan, Pioneer Venus, and other Venus missions, as well as earth-based observations that contribute to understanding the physical and evolutionary properties of Venus. The program intends to enhance the scientific return from these missions by broadening the participation in the analysis of Venus data. Categories of research funded by VDAP are atmosphere, ionosphere, geology, geophysics, and mapping. The directory is intended to provide the science community with an overview of the research projects supported by this program. Research activities identified in this directory were selected for funding in FY 93 on the basis of scientific peer review conducted by the VDAP Review Panel.

  9. Progress report on VENUS

    SciTech Connect

    Leitner, Matthaeus A.; Leitner, Daniela; Abbott, Steve R.; Taylor, Clyde E.; Lyneis, Claude

    2002-09-03

    The construction of VENUS, a next generation superconducting Electron Cyclotron Resonance ion source designed to operate at 28 GHz, is complete. The cryostat including the superconducting magnet assembly was delivered in September 2001. During acceptance tests, the superconducting magnets produced an axial magnetic field strength of 4T at injection, 3T at extraction, and a radial field strength of 2T at the plasma chamber wall without any quenches. These fields are sufficient for optimum operation at 28 GHz. The cryogenic system for VENUS has been designed to operate at 4.2 K with two cryocoolers each providing up to 45 W of cooling at 50 K and 1.5 W at 4 K in a closed loop mode without further helium transfers. However, during the acceptance tests an excessive heat leak of about 3W was measured. In addition, the liquid helium heat exchanger did not work properly and had to be redesigned. The cryogenic system modifications will be described. In addition, an update on the installation of the ion source and its beam line components will be given.

  10. Venus' Free Obliquity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoder, Charles F.

    1995-01-01

    The predicted orientation of Venus' rotation axis relative to its orbit ran be uniquely determined given knowledge of its J2 gravity coefficient and polar moment of inertia C if its free obliquity is fully damped. This assumption seems warranted given the dominant damping mechanism: turbulent fluid friction at a core mantle boundary (CMB). This skin friction results from differential obliquity of mantle and core spin axes, and the associated damping rate could be as short as 1/10(exp 6) year. However, the observed pole orientation indicates a free obliquity amplitude epsilon approx. = 2.1 deg compared with a nominal forced amplitude of 0.5 deg. There are two plausible explanations. The most likely is that the observed obliquity is a tidally evolved end state in which core friction, modulated by CMB ellipticity and core obliquity amplitude, counterbalances solid and atmospheric tidal torques. This concept is similar to the explanation for the retrograde spin omega as an end state in which solid and atmospheric thermal tidal torques balance at the present spin rate because of the omega(sup -1) dependence of the axial thermal torque. Weaker effects such as solid and thermal tides can then compete with core friction and for plausible models, their sum tends to increase free obliquity. The obliquity balance is controlled by the nonlinear (and nearly quadratic) dependence of the CMB turbulent "skin friction" torque on obliquity.Core ellipticity also has a profound effect on tidal evolution of Venus obliquity.

  11. Global mapping strategies for a synthetic aperture radar system in orbit about Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kerridge, S. J.

    1980-01-01

    An analysis of the global mapping of Venus using a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) is presented. The geometry of the side-looking radar, the narrow swath width, and the slow rotation of Venus combine to constrain the methods required to produce such a map within the primary mapping mission of 121.5 days. Parametric studies indicate that multiple strategies can satisfy the requirements of the mission with reasonable assumptions for the total recording capacity, the downlink data rate, and the operating time of the SAR on each revolution.

  12. Hinode SOT Plate Scale Reinvestigated by G-Band Images on the 2012 Transit of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanao, M.; Shimizu, T.; Imamura, T.; Nakamura, M.

    2015-05-01

    The Hinode Solar Optical Telescope (SOT) successfully observed the transit of Venus with an unprecedented high spatial resolution on 5 - 6 June 2012, providing images of the aureole refracted by the atmosphere of Venus and the dark Venus disk against the bright solar surface. The transit of Venus provided a unique opportunity for calibrating the plate scale of SOT images. With the examination of the radius of the dark Venus disk, we determined the plate scale of G-band 430.5 nm images with high accuracy: 0.05369±0.00005 arcsec pixel-1. The radius was defined at the intensity level of the 0.5 transmittance and compared with the angular radius of Venus including the thickness of the atmosphere determined with the measurements of SPICAV onboard Venus Express. Thanks to the high spatial resolution, SOT images show that the dark Venus can be well represented by an ellipse. We observed 7.6 km difference in altitude between the equator and the polar regions.

  13. Magnetic flux ropes in the Venus ionosphere - Observations and models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elphic, R. C.; Russell, C. T.

    1983-01-01

    Pioneer Venus Orbiter data are used as evidence of naturally occurring magnetic field filamentary structures which can be described by a flux rope model. The solar wind is interpreted as piling up a magnetic field on the Venus ionosphere, with the incident ram pressure being expressed as magnetic field pressure. Currents flowing at the ionopause shield out the field, allowing magnetic excursions to be observed with magnitudes of tens of nT over an interval of a few seconds. A quantitative assessment is made of the signature expected from a flux rope. It is noted that each excursion of the magnetic field detected by the Orbiter magnetometer was correlated with variations in the three components of the field. A coordinate system is devised which shows that the Venus data is indicative of the presence of flux ropes whose parameters are the coordinates of the system and would yield the excursions observed in the spacecraft crossings of the fields.

  14. Ionospheric magnetic fields and currents at Venus and Mars.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, Eduard; Fraenz, Markus; Zhang, TieLong; Woch, Joachim; Wei, Yong

    2014-05-01

    Venus Express spacecraft have provided us a wealth of in-situ observations of characteristics of induced magnetospheres of Venus at low altitudes during solar minimum conditions. At such conditions large-scale magnetic fields are observed deeply in the ionospheres (magnetized ionospheres). The arising magnetic field pattern occurs strongly asymmetrical. For example, in the ionosphere pointed in the direction opposite to the direction of the motional electric field in solar wind, the cross-flow component of the magnetic field changes sign. Asymmetry in the fields significantly modifies a plasma transport to the night side. We have found similar features at Mars while analyzing the magnetic field measurements made by Mars Global Surveyor. The VEX and MGS observations again raise a long-standing question about the origin of these fields in the magnetized ionospheres of Venus and Mars. The problem is intimately related to the issue of electric current system and their closure. We discuss different scenarios of the field origin.

  15. Recent hotspot volcanism on Venus from VIRTIS emissivity data.

    PubMed

    Smrekar, Suzanne E; Stofan, Ellen R; Mueller, Nils; Treiman, Allan; Elkins-Tanton, Linda; Helbert, Joern; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Drossart, Pierre

    2010-04-30

    The questions of whether Venus is geologically active and how the planet has resurfaced over the past billion years have major implications for interior dynamics and climate change. Nine "hotspots"--areas analogous to Hawaii, with volcanism, broad topographic rises, and large positive gravity anomalies suggesting mantle plumes at depth--have been identified as possibly active. This study used variations in the thermal emissivity of the surface observed by the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer on the European Space Agency's Venus Express spacecraft to identify compositional differences in lava flows at three hotspots. The anomalies are interpreted as a lack of surface weathering. We estimate the flows to be younger than 2.5 million years and probably much younger, about 250,000 years or less, indicating that Venus is actively resurfacing. PMID:20378775

  16. The International VEGA "Venus-Halley" (1984-1986) Experiment: Description and Scientific Objectives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1985-01-01

    The Venus-Halley (Vega) project will provide a unique opportunity to combine a mission over Venus with a transfer flight to Halley's comet. This project is based on three research goals: (1) to study the surface of Venus; (2) to study the air circulation on Venus and its meteorological parameters; and (3) to study Halley's comet. The objective of the study of Halley's comet is to: determine the physical characteristics of its nucleus; define the structure and dynamics of the coma around the nucleus; define the gas composition near the nucleus; investigate the dust particle distribution as a function of mass at various distances from the nucleus; and investigate the solar wind interaction with the atmosphere and ionosphere of the comet.

  17. Nonthermal escape of hydrogen and deuterium from Venus and implications for loss of water

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kumar, S.; Hunten, D. M.; Pollack, J. B.

    1983-01-01

    As the dominant nonthermal mechanism for the escape of hydrogen in past Venus atmospheres, the charge exchange of H(+) with H would have provided an escape flux close to the diffusion-limiting value for H-mixing ratios up to 0.002 at the homopause, which also marks the onset of hydrodynamic flow. Charge exchange therefore represents a viable mechanism through which Venus could have lost up to an earth-equivalent ocean of water from its atmosphere over geologic time. Present Venus atmosphere estimates are based on in situ Pioneer Venus mission measurements, and assumptions in the course of extrapolation to past atmospheres have been with respect to the nature of the bulge, circulation pattern, and ion temperature.

  18. Systems design study of the Pioneer Venus spacecraft. Appendices to volume 1, sections 3-6 (part 1 of 3). [design of Venus probe windows

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    The design is described of the Venus probe windows, which are required to measure solar flux, infrared flux, aureole, and cloud particles. Window heating and structural materials for the probe window assemblies are discussed along with the magnetometer. The command lists for science, power and communication requirements, telemetry sign characteristics, mission profile summary, mass properties of payloads, and failure modes are presented.

  19. The abundance of sulfur dioxide below the clouds of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bezard, Bruno; De Bergh, Catherine; Fegley, Bruce; Maillard, Jean-Pierre; Crisp, David; Owen, Tobias; Pollack, James B.; Grinspoon, David

    1993-01-01

    We present a new method for determining the abundance of sulfur dioxide below the clouds of Venus. Absorption by the 3nu3 band of SO2 near 2.45 microns has been detected in high-resolution spectra of the night side of Venus recorded at the Canada-France Hawaii telescope in 1989 and 1991. The inferred SO2 abundance is 130 +/- 40 ppm at all observed locations and pertains to the 35-45 km region. These values are comparable to those measured by the Pioneer Venus and Venera 11/12 entry probes in 1978. This stability stands in contrast to the apparent massive decrease in SO2 observed at the cloud tops since these space missions. These results are consistent with laboratory and modeling studies of the SO2 destruction rates in the lower atmosphere of Venus. The new spectroscopic technique presented here allows a remote monitoring of the SO2 abundance below the clouds, a likely tracer of Venusian volcanism.

  20. Geologic Map of the Helen Planitia Quadrangle (V-52), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lopez, Ivan; Hansen, Vicki L.

    2008-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan Mission objectives included (1) improving the knowledge of the geological processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving the knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Helen Planitia quadrangle (V-52), located in the southern hemisphere of Venus between lat 25 deg S. and 50 deg S. and between long 240 deg E. and 270 deg E., covers approximately 8,000,000 km2. Regionally, the map area is located at the southern limit of an area of enhanced tectonomagmatic activity and extensional deformation, marked by a triangle that has highland apexes at Beta, Atla, and Themis Regiones (BAT anomaly) and is connected by the large extensional belts of Devana, Hecate, and Parga Chasmata. The BAT anomaly covers approximately 20 percent of the Venusian surface.

  1. USGS Magellan stereomapping of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howington-Kraus, E.; Kirk, R. L.; Galuszka, D.; Redding, B.

    Introduction: The Magellan spacecraft went into Venus orbit in 1990 and by 1992 had made three complete cycles of polar orbits, each cycle covering the full range of longitudes. During this time the spacecraft obtained synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of >96% of the planet at a resolution of 75 m/pixel [1]. Images taken with a decreased look angle from vertical, primarily during Cycle 3, provide stereo coverage of 17% of the planet when combined with images with same-side illumination from earlier in the mission. The stereo geometry of these images is extremely favorable, allowing elevation measurements with an estimated vertical precision (EP) of ˜10 m [2]. Magellan also obtained radar altimetry data at a horizontal resolution of 10x25 km, but photogrammetric analysis of the stereoimagery can yield topographic maps with a horizontal resolution more than an order of magnitude superior to that of the altimeter. We therefore developed software needed to utilize Magellan stereomagery on our photogrammetric workstation running commercial (SOCET SET R BAE) software [3,4]. The special hardware and SOCET SET software of this system provide many useful capabilities for stereomapping which can be extended by programming with the SOCET SET Developer's Toolkit (DEVKIT). The unique properties of the Magellan SAR data made it necessary to develop both translation software (of image data and supporting geometric information) and a sensor model [5]. Sensor Model: A sensor model is a function that specifies the transformation between image space (lines, samples) and object or ground coordinates (latitude, longitude, elevation). Our Magellan SAR sensor model includes all the physics of the Magellan imaging process, and accounts for the fact that during the Magellan imaging process, the images have been partially orthorectified as part of the correlation process: distortions attributable to topography were removed (but only those accounted for in the very low resolution pre-Magellan topo model) and must be put back in for the images to be matched correctly. The sensor model is designed to work with any combination of unmosaicked (F-BIDR), Mission-mosaicked (F- and C-MIDR), and USGS- mosaicked (FMAP) images. Information about the spacecraft position and velocity can be taken either from the F-BIDR headers or from separate NAIF SPICE kernels, letting us take advantage of post-mission improvements to the spacecraft ephemerides. In addition, the SOCET SET bundle-adjustment software can be used to estimate corrections to the ephemeris of each orbit. The form of the corrections, offsets in three orthogonal directions (along-track, across-track, and radial) suffices to correct the orbits over short arcs and reconcile SAR and altimetry observations. 1 Validation: We rigorously tested and accounted for potential error sources in our mapping process. We first addressed the well-known "cliffs," artifacts in the stereo data caused by discrepancies between the mission ephemeris solutions for successive blocks of orbits. Alex Konopliv of JPL reprocessed the entire set of orbital tracking and navigation data based on the detailed gravity observations from the end of the mission and claimed that errors in the new orbit solutions were decreased 1.5 orders of magnitude (to 50-200 m) in all 3 axes [6]. To produce seamless elevation data, we found it necessary to collect image-to-image tie point measurements and use these to estimate local position/velocity corrections to the orbits. We concluded that both the improved orbit/tracking solution and corrections based on the images themselves are necessary for successful stereomapping. Secondly, because we constrain elevations of control points based on the Magellan altimetry, the question arose of how sensitive our bundle adjustment process is to artifacts in the Magellan altimetry. (Elevations of individual altimeter footprints can be in error by several kilometers at high-contrast boundaries in the surface scattering function.) We demonstrated that the adjustable parameters allow each imag

  2. PHYS 178 2008 Week 4, Part 1 Venus Colorized Clouds

    E-print Network

    Wardle, Mark

    Venus PHYS 178 ­ 2008 Week 4, Part 1 ! Venus Colorized Clouds This colorized picture of Venus studies of Venus. The features are embedded in winds that flow from east to west at about 230 mph and the evening terminator is to the left. PIA00111 #12;2 Table 9-1, p.199 #12;Venus in UV #12;Venus as Viewed

  3. Descent into theDescent into theDescent into theDescent into the Hell of VenusHell of VenusHell of VenusHell of Venus

    E-print Network

    Alfonseca, Manuel

    Descent into theDescent into theDescent into theDescent into the Hell of VenusHell of VenusHell of VenusHell of Venus Manuel AlfonsecaManuel AlfonsecaManuel AlfonsecaManuel Alfonseca #12;Manuel Alfonseca 2 #12;Descent into the Hell of Venus 3 DESCENT INTO THE HELL OF VENUS Manuel Alfonseca All Rights

  4. Mantle plumes on Venus revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, Walter S.

    1992-01-01

    The Equatorial Highlands of Venus consist of a series of quasicircular regions of high topography, rising up to about 5 km above the mean planetary radius. These highlands are strongly correlated with positive geoid anomalies, with a peak amplitude of 120 m at Atla Regio. Shield volcanism is observed at Beta, Eistla, Bell, and Atla Regiones and in the Hathor Mons-Innini Mons-Ushas Mons region of the southern hemisphere. Volcanos have also been mapped in Phoebe Regio and flood volcanism is observed in Ovda and Thetis Regiones. Extensional tectonism is also observed in Ovda and Thetis Regiones. Extensional tectonism is also observed in many of these regions. It is now widely accepted that at least Beta, Atla, Eistla, and Bell Regiones are the surface expressions of hot, rising mantel plumes. Upwelling plumes are consistent with both the volcanism and the extensional tectonism observed in these regions. The geoid anomalies and topography of these four regions show considerable variation. Peak geoid anomalies exceed 90 m at Beta and Atla, but are only 40 m at Eistla and 24 m at Bell. Similarly, the peak topography is greater at Beta and Atla than at Eistla and Bell. Such a range of values is not surprising because terrestrial hotspot swells also have a side range of geoid anomalies and topographic uplifts. Kiefer and Hager used cylindrical axisymmetric, steady-state convection calculations to show that mantle plumes can quantitatively account for both the amplitude and the shape of the long-wavelength geoid and topography at Beta and Atla. In these models, most of the topography of these highlands is due to uplift by the vertical normal stress associated with the rising plume. Additional topography may also be present due to crustal thickening by volcanism and crustal thinning by rifting. Smrekar and Phillips have also considered the geoid and topography of plumes on Venus, but they restricted themselves to considering only the geoid-topography ratio and did not examine either the geoid and topography amplitudes separately or the shapes of anomalies.

  5. Results of refraction-angle measurement of radio waves in the Venus atmosphere on the basis of bistatic radar data

    Microsoft Academic Search

    R. R. Salimzyanov; D. A. Pavel'Ev

    1993-01-01

    Improved measurements of refraction in the Venus atmosphere using bistatic radar data have been obtained. To describe the refraction effects, a theoretical model is developed that makes it possible to determine the parameters for calculating radio communication lines in the Venus troposphere from the height dependence of the refractive index. Expressions are obtained relating the phase path length of radio

  6. Pioneer Venus Orbiter Fluxgate Magnetometer

    Microsoft Academic Search

    C. T. Russell; R. C. Snare; J. D. Means; R. C. Elphic

    1980-01-01

    The fluxgate magnetometer on the Pioneer Venus orbiter spacecraft is described. Special features include gradiometer operation, on board despinning, a floating point processor and variable Nyquist filters. Initial operations have been entirely successful.

  7. Laying bare Venus' dark secrets

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, D.A.

    1987-10-01

    Ground-based IR observations of the dark side of Venus obtained in 1983 and 1985 with the Anglo-Australian Telescope are studied. An IR spectrum of Venus' dark side is analyzed. It is observed that the Venus atmosphere is composed of CO and radiation escapes only at 1.74 microns and 2.2 to 2.4 microns. The possible origin of the radiation, either due to absorbed sunlight or escaping thermal radiation, was investigated. These two hypotheses were eliminated, and it is proposed that the clouds of Venus are transparent and the radiation originates from the same stratum as the brighter portions but is weakened by the passage through the upper layer. The significance of the observed dark side markings is discussed.

  8. Physics of the planet Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    A. D. Kuzmin; M. Y. Marov

    1975-01-01

    Data on the dimensions, figure, relief, rotation, surface physics, atmosphere, ionosphere and upper atmosphere of Venus are analyzed. These data were obtained from measurements made by spacecraft and ground-based instruments.

  9. Venus wind-altitude radar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levanon, N.

    1974-01-01

    A design study on adding a radar altimeter to the Pioneer Venus small probe is review. Block and timing diagrams are provided. The inherent and interface ambiguities, resolution, and data handling logic for radar altimeters are described.

  10. Clouds and aerosols on Venus: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Titov, D. V.; Ignatiev, N. I.; McGouldrick, K.; Wilquet, V.; Wilson, C. F.

    2014-04-01

    The past decade demonstrated significant progress in understanding of the Venus cloud system. This paper gives a summary of new observations and modelling efforts that will form the basis for a relevant chapter in the Venus III book. Venus Express observations reveal significant latitudinal variations and temporal changes in the global cloud top morphology [1]. The cloud top altitude varies from ~72 km in the low and middle latitudes to ~64 km in the polar region, correlated with decrease of the aerosol scale height from 4 ± 1.6 km to 1.7 ± 2.4 km marking a vast polar depression [2, 3]. UV imaging shows the middle latitudes and polar regions in unprecedented detail. The eye of the Southern polar vortex was found to be a strongly variable feature with complex morphology and dynamics [4]. Solar and stellar occultations give access to a vertical profiling of the light absorption by the aerosols in the upper haze. The aerosol loading in the mesosphere of Venus investigated by SPICAV experiment onboard Venus Express between 2006 and 2010 was highly variable on both short and long time scales. The extinction at a given altitude can vary with a factor of 10 for occultations separated by a few Earth days. The extinction at a given altitude is also significantly lower towards the poles (by a factor 10 at least) compared to the values around the equator, while there is apparently no correlation between the extinction and the latitude in the region comprised between ±40° around the equator [5]. Based on Mie theory and on the observed spectral dependence of light extinction in spectra recorded simultaneously in the UV (SPICAV-UV), in the near IR (SPICAV-IR), and in the short-and midwavelength IR (SPICAV-SOIR), the size distribution of aerosols in the upper haze of Venus was retrieved, assuming H2SO4/water composition of the droplets [6]. The optical model includes H2SO4 concentrations from 60 to 85%. A number of results are strikingly new: (1) an increase of the H2SO4 concentration with a decreasing altitude (from 70-75% at about 90 km to 85% at 70 km of altitude) and (2) Many SOIR/SPICAV data cannot be fitted when using size distributions found in the literature, with an effective radius below 0.3 ?m and a variance of about 2. The scale height of the upper haze is found to be 6.9 ± 5.1 km. The lower & middle cloud layers - those at 48 - 60 km altitudes - are difficult to observe, as they are hidden by upper clouds. Nevertheless, both nightside near-IR sounding and radio occultation has provided valuable insight into cloud processes in this region. Near IR sounding reveals the morphology of the lower/middle clouds 'backlit' by thermally emitted photons from the lower atmosphere. The morphology of these clouds changes on timescales of order of 24 hours [7]. The vertically integrated cloud optical depth is twice as great in the polar collar (at 75 degrees latitude) compared to low latitudes. Spectral band ratio analysis, if interpreted strictly in terms of Mode 1 / 2 / 2' / 3 particles of H2SO4:H2O mixtures, the acidity of the cloud particles is found to be higher near the polar collar and in regions of optically thick cloud [8]. Particles in the centre of the polar vortex exhibit anomalously high band ratios so are significantly larger and/or of different composition than those at low latitudes [9]. Radio occultation from Venus Express confirms that the atmosphere is in convective equilibrium from 50-60 km [10]. Sulphuric acid vapour profiles calculated from the absorption of the radio signals show an atmosphere saturated with sulphuric acid in the cloud layer [11]. Both of these results are consistent with the understanding of convective condensational cloud at altitudes of 50-60 km. Microphysical simulations of the aerosol populations in the atmosphere of Venus have received a boost from the recent exploration of particle properties carried out by various teams using Venus Express over the last decade or so. Numerous groups are applying separate models to the coupled problems of the Venus clouds. Quasi-periodic variabilit

  11. Venus: an isothermal lower atmosphere?

    PubMed

    Gale, W; Liwshitz, M; Sinclair, A C

    1969-05-30

    Use of Earth-based microwave data in extrapolating the atmospheric profile of Venus below the region probed by Mariner V and Venera 4 reveals an isothermal layer at 670 degrees +/- 20 degrees K that extends to an altitude of 7 +/- 2 kilometers. This model gives a value of 6054.8 kilometers for the radius of Venus, and agreement with brightness spectrum, radar cross sections, and results of microwave interferometry. PMID:17796610

  12. The study of Venus continues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barsukov, V. L.

    1983-01-01

    The landing of the Soviet interplanetary station Venera-13 in March, 1982, is described. One of the tasks of the station was to study the composition and structure of cloud layers on Venus. It was established that the cloud layer consists largely of sulfuric acid. Data obtained from other Venera stations are also presented. It is concluded that fundamental similarities can be found in the geological development of the Earth and Venus.

  13. A Venus Rover Capable of Long Life Surface Operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, M.; Shirley, J. H.; Abelson, R. D.

    2005-12-01

    Access to the surface of Venus would allow planetary scientists to address a number of currently open questions. Among these are the elemental and mineralogical composition of the surface; the interaction of the surface with the atmosphere; the atmospheric composition, especially isotope ratios of key species; the nature of the planetary volcanism (present activity, emissions to the atmosphere, and composition); planetary seismicity; the local surface meteorology (winds and pressure variability); and the surface geology and morphology at particular locations on the surface. A long lived Venus rover mission could be enabled by utilizing a novel Stirling engine system for both cooling and electric power. Previous missions to the Venus surface, including the Pioneer Venus and Venera missions, survived for only a few hours. The rover concept described in the present study is designed for a surface lifetime of 60 days, with the potential of operating well beyond that. A Thermo-Acoustic Stirling Heat Engine (TASHE) would convert the high-temperature (~1200 °C) heat from General Purpose Heat Source (GPHS) modules into acoustic power which then drives a linear alternator and a pulse tube cooler to provide electric power and remove the large environmental heat load. The "cold" side of the engine would be furnished by the ambient atmosphere at 460 °C. This short study focused on the feasibility of using the TASHE system in this hostile environment to power a ~650 kg rover that would provide a mobile platform for science measurements. The instrument suite would collect data on atmospheric and surface composition, surface stratigraphy, and subsurface structure. An Earth-Venus-Venus trajectory would be used to deliver the rover to a low entry angle allowing an inflated ballute to provide a low deceleration and low heat descent to the surface. All rover systems would be housed in a pressure vessel in vacuum with the internal temperature maintained by the TASHE below 50 °C. No externally deployed or articulated components would be used and penetrations through the pressure vessel are minimized. Science data would be returned direct to Earth using S-Band to minimize atmospheric attenuation.

  14. Transits Of Venus: 1639, 1761, 1769, 1874, 1882, 2004, And 2012

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasachoff, Jay M.

    2012-01-01

    Transits of Venus are exceedingly rare predictable astronomical events, with only six having been observed since Jeremiah Horrox corrected Johannes Kepler's Rudolphine Tables and observed the transit of 1639. Edmond Halley's 1716 method of finding the size and scale of the Solar System and thus of the Universe led to hundreds of 18th-century and 19th-century transit-of-Venus expeditions for each event. I discuss the history and importance of the transit observations, and how spacecraft observations of the 1999 transit of Mercury, repeated at the 2003 and 2006 transits, led to the solution of the black-drop effect problem that had prevented Halley's method from reaching its desired accuracy and thus solution of the noble problem of astronomy to find the size and scale of the solar system. Other spacecraft observations of the 2004 transit of Venus have led to an analysis of how Venus's atmosphere becomes visible for about 25 minutes before second contact and after third contact, and links with prior historical claims, mostly invalid, to have discovered Venus's atmosphere at transits. Total-solar-irradiance spacecraft observations at the 2004 Venus transit link to exoplanet discoveries with NASA's aptly named Kepler Mission and ESA's CoRoT. I further link previous transit observations to planned observations for the June 5/6, 2012, Venus transit and the May 9, 2016, Mercury transit, together providing a historical basis for 22nd-century astronomers preparing to observe the December 10, 2117, Venus transit. My observations at the 2004 and 2012 transits of Venus were and will be supported in large part by grants from the Committee for Research and Exploration of the National Geographic Society. My solar observations were supported in part by NASA grant NNG04GK44G for work with the TRACE spacecraft and NASA Marshall grant NNX10AK47A and planetary work supported in part by NNX08AO50G from NASA Planetary Astronomy.

  15. The June 6 2012 transit of Venus: Imaging and spectroscopic analysis of the upper atmosphere emission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bazin, C.; Zhi, X.; Valls-Gabaud, D.; Koutchmy, S.; Rocher, P.; Zin, Z. Y.; Fu, Y.; Yang, L.; Liu, G. Q.; Liu, Z.; Ji, K.; Goodarzi, H.

    2014-12-01

    In the context of transiting exoplanets, the last June 6, 2012 Venus transit was a unique opportunity to address important questions regarding its atmosphere. The transit of Venus is indeed a particular case of an Earth-like planet transit, and the inference one can make about the upper layers of its atmosphere can be applied to other exoplanets. To this aim, we designed a small spectrograph that we placed at the focus of the New Vacuum Solar Telescope of Yunnan Observatory in China (45 m focus and 1 m of aperture), coupled to a 4K×2K 14 bit CCD detector, to measure low-resolution optical spectra of the refracted, scattered and transmitted solar radiation in the upper layers of the planet. It covered the 385-780 nm range when Venus was over the disc, and 540-680 nm (including the O_2 terrestrial bands) during the 18 minutes-long egress. The H? and He I D3 lines were recorded repeatedly. The atmospheric Lomonossov arc of Venus was simultaneously imaged using H? and TiO filters, allowing us to check the slit position on the images of Venus and to locate the spectroscopic features on its disc. The spectra show the signature of the Northern Pole horn part; a second part was evidenced on the spectra taken near but outside the limb. We studied the O_2, H_2O and H? line profiles searching for signatures arising from Venus and we compared the observed spectra with synthetic models. The spectroscopic dataset can now be used by a large community for discussing the properties of the upper atmosphere of Venus and the future detection of Venus-like exoplanets. Finally, the study is completed using a unique very high resolution deconvolved image of the arc and Venus silhouetted at the limb of the Sun, from the SOT of the Hinode space mission.

  16. NASA CONNECT: Venus Transit

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    2004-01-01

    In this program, students learn about the importance of using scale models to represent the size and distance of objects in the Solar System and beyond. They are introduced to the astronomical unit (AU), the baseline distance from the Earth to the Sun, which astronomers use to determine the relative distances from Earth to other planets, stars, asteroids, and objects in space. They also discover facts about the Venus Transit, a celestial and historical event, which helped astronomers determine the scale of the Solar System. Students use measurement, ratios, and graphing to construct a model of the solar system and determine the relationship of each planet to the Sun. They will explore the scales needed to represent the size of the planets and the distances to the Sun.

  17. Spatial and temporal variations of Venus haze properties obtained from Pioneer Venus Orbiter polarimetry

    E-print Network

    Spatial and temporal variations of Venus haze properties obtained from Pioneer Venus Orbiter. [1] The spatial and temporal variations of the polarization of light scattered by Venus, as observed by the Pioneer Venus Orbiter between 1978 and 1990, is analyzed in terms of spatial and temporal variations

  18. Imaging of Mercury and Venus from a flyby

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murray, B.C.; Belton, M.J.S.; Edward, Danielson G.; Davies, M.E.; Kuiper, G.P.; O'Leary, B. T.; Suomi, V.E.; Trask, N.J.

    1971-01-01

    This paper describes the results of study of an imaging experiment planned for the 1973 Mariner Venus/Mercury flyby mission. Scientific objectives, mission constraints, analysis of alternative systems, and the rationale for final choice are presented. Severe financial constraints ruled out the best technical alternative for flyby imaging, a film/readout system, or even significant re-design of previous Mariner vidicon camera/tape recorder systems. The final selection was a vidicon camera quite similar to that used for Mariner Mars 1971, but with the capability of real time transmission during the Venus and Mercury flybys. Real time data return became possible through dramatic increase in the communications bandwidth at only modest sacrifice in the quality of the returned pictures. Two identical long focal length cameras (1500 mm) were selected and it will be possible to return several thousand pictures from both planets at resolutions ranging from equivalent to Earthbased to tenths of a kilometer at encounter. Systematic high resolution ultraviolet photography of Venus is planned after encounter in an attempt to understand the nature of the mysterious ultraviolet markings and their apparent 4- to 5-day rotation period. Full disk coverage in mosaics will produce pictures of both planets similar in quality to Earthbased telescopic pictures of the Moon. The increase of resolution, more than three orders of magnitude, will yield an exciting first look at two planets whose closeup appearance is unknown. ?? 1971.

  19. Solar wind precipitation - a comparison between Mars and Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stenberg Wieser, Gabriella; Nilsson, Hans; Futaana, Yoshifumi; Holmström, Mats; Barabash, Stas

    2015-04-01

    Mars and Venus both have atmospheres but both lack a substantial intrinsic magnetic field. Hence, their interaction with the solar wind is similar. Due to currents set up in the ionospheres the interplanetary magnetic field embedded in the solar wind drapes around the planets forming induced magnetospheres. The plasma instrument packages ASPERA-3 and ASPERA-4 on the two spacecraft Mars Express and Venus Express are very similar and invite to a comparison between the two plasma environments. In this study we used the Ion Mass Analyser (IMA) on both spacecraft to investigate the solar wind precipitation onto the upper atmospheres. We focus on the differences between the two planets. We conclude that on Mars we regularly observe precipitating solar wind ions (H+ and He2+) inside the induced magnetosphere boundary (IMB). The precipitation is clearly guided by the solar wind convection electric field and He2+ and H+ are seen independently of each other. On Venus precipitation of He2+ is only observed close to the IMB and always together with H+. The precipitation events on Venus have no clear correlation with the solar wind electric field.

  20. Clouds and aerosols on Venus: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Titov, Dmitri; Ignatiev, Nikolay; McGouldrick, Kevin; Wilquet, Valerie; Wilson, Colin

    2015-04-01

    The past decade demonstrated significant progress in understanding of the Venus cloud system. Venus Express observations revealed significant latitudinal variations and temporal changes in the global cloud top morphology. The cloud top altitude varies from ~72 km in the low and middle latitudes to ~64 km in the polar region, correlated with decrease of the aerosol scale height from 4 ± 1.6 km to 1.7 ± 2.4 km marking a vast polar depression. The UV imaging shows the middle latitudes and polar regions in unprecedented detail. The eye of the Southern polar vortex was found to be a strongly variable feature with complex morphology and dynamics. Solar and stellar occultations give access to a vertical profiling of the light absorption by the aerosols in the upper haze. The aerosol loading in the mesosphere of Venus investigated by SPICAV experiment onboard Venus Express between 2006 and 2010 was highly variable on both short and long time scales. The extinction at a given altitude can vary with a factor of 10 for occultations separated by a few Earth days. The extinction at a given altitude is also significantly lower towards the poles (by a factor 10 at least) compared to the values around the equator, while there is apparently no correlation between the extinction and the latitude in the region comprised between ±40° around the equator. Based on the Mie theory and on the observed spectral dependence of light extinction in spectra recorded simultaneously in the UV (SPICAV-UV), in the near IR (SPICAV-IR), and in the short-and mid-wavelength IR (SPICAV-SOIR), the size distribution of aerosols in the upper haze of Venus was retrieved, assuming H2SO4/water composition of the droplets. The optical model includes H2SO4 concentrations from 60% to 85%. A number of results are strikingly new: (1) an increase of the H2SO4 concentration with a decreasing altitude (from 70-75% at about 90 km to 85% at 70 km of altitude) and (2) Many SOIR/SPICAV data cannot be fitted when using size distributions found in the literature, with an effective radius below 0.3 ?m and a variance of about 2. The scale height of the upper haze is found to be 6.9 ± 5.1 km. The lower and middle cloud layers - those at 48 - 60 km altitudes - are difficult to observe, as they are hidden by upper clouds. Nevertheless, both nightside near-IR sounding and radio occultation has provided valuable insight into cloud processes in this region. Near IR sounding reveals the morphology of the lower/middle clouds 'backlit' by thermally emitted photons from the lower atmosphere. The morphology of these clouds changes on timescales of order of 24 hours. The vertically integrated cloud optical depth is twice as great in the polar collar (at 75 degrees latitude) compared to low latitudes. Spectral band ratio analysis, if interpreted strictly in terms of Mode 1 / 2 / 2' / 3 particles of H2SO4:H2O mixtures, suggests that the acidity of the cloud particles is higher near the polar collar and in regions of optically thick cloud. Particles in the centre of the polar vortex exhibit anomalously high band ratios so are significantly larger and/or of different composition than those at low latitudes. Radio occultation from Venus Express confirms that the atmosphere is in convective equilibrium from 50-60 km. Sulphuric acid vapour profiles calculated from the absorption of the radio signals show an atmosphere saturated with sulphuric acid in the cloud layer. Both of these results are consistent with the understanding of convective condensational cloud at altitudes of 50-60 km. Microphysical simulations of the aerosol populations in the atmosphere of Venus have received a boost from the recent exploration of particle properties carried out by various teams using Venus Express over the last decade or so. Numerous groups are applying separate models to the coupled problems of the Venus clouds. Quasi-periodic variability of aerosol population properties has been found in model simulations by several groups under both forced and unforced conditions. Since the clouds play such a significant

  1. Pioneer Venus large probe neutral mass spectrometer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, J.

    1982-01-01

    The deuterium hydrogen abundance ratio in the Venus atmosphere was measured while the inlets to the Pioneer Venus large probe mass spectrometer were coated with sulfuric acid from Venus' clouds. The ratio is (1.6 + or - 0.2) x 10 to the minus two power. It was found that the 100 fold enrichment of deuterium means that Venus outgassed at least 0.3% of a terrestrial ocean and possibly more.

  2. Venus Transit and the Search for New Worlds (Webcast)

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    2004-03-19

    This webcast features a panel of NASA scientists and engineers discussing the future of extrasolar planet research and the science behind a rare astronomical event: Venus crossing the Sun’s disk for about seven hours on June 8, 2004, an event not seen since 1882. The transit demonstrates a key technique being used to detect planets orbiting stars outside our Solar System. Just as Venus temporarily dimmed the light of the Sun when it crossed in front of it, a distant planet may cross in front of and block the light of its parent star. Several planned missions will hunt for such extrasolar planets as part of NASA's Origins program, which seeks to answer the following questions: Where did we come from? Are we alone?

  3. Gamma-ray burst observations by Pioneer Venus Orbiter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Evans, W. D.; Glore, J. P.; Klebesadel, R. W.; Laros, J. G.; Tech, E. R.; Spalding, R. E.

    1979-01-01

    The Pioneer Venus Orbiter gamma burst detector is an astrophysics experiment for monitoring cosmic gamma-ray bursts. It is included in this planetary mission to provide a long baseline for accurately locating the sources of these bursts in order to identify them with specific astronomical objects. Responses to 14 gamma-ray burst events were examined; these events were verified from data acquired by other systems. Preliminary locations are proposed for three events, based on data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter, ISEE C, and Vela spacecraft. These locations will be improved, and additional locations will be determined by including in the analyses data from Helios B and the Russian Venera 11, Venera 12, and Prognoz 7 spacecraft.

  4. Investigating the Geophysics of Venus: Result of the post-Alpbach Summer School 2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koopmans, Robert-Jan; ?osiak, Anna; Bia?ek, Agata; Donohoe, Anthony; Fernández Jiménez, María; Frasl, Barbara; Gurciullo, Antonio; Kleinschneider, Andreas; Mannel, Thurid; Muñoz Elorza, Iñigo; Nilsson, Daniel; Oliveira, Marta; Sørensen-Clark, Paul; Timoney, Ryan; van Zelst, Iris

    2015-04-01

    Venus has been investigated by only five dedicated mission programs since the beginning of space flight. This relatively low level of interest is remarkable when considering that mass and radius of Venus are very similar to Earth's, while at the same time characteristics such as spin rate, atmospheric composition, pressure and temperature, make Venus a very different, inhabitable world. The underlying causes of these differences are not well understood. Apprehending Venus' tectonics and internal structure would not only shed light on the question why those two planets evolved so differently, but also help refining current models of planetary systems formation. In order to answer the question about reasons for differences in evolution of those two planets a group of 15 young scientists and engineers designed a mission to Venus during a follow-up of the Alpbach Summer School 2014. The primary objective of this mission is to learn whether Venus is tectonically active and on what time scale. In order to accomplish this goal the mission will determine the crustal structure of Venus, the current activity and distribution of active volcanoes and the movement of continental plates. The secondary objective is to further constrain the models of Venus' internal structure and composition. To achieve this, the mission will investigate the size, state and composition of the core as well as the state and composition of the mantle. The proposed mission consists of an orbiter in a near-polar circular orbit around Venus and a balloon for in-situ measurements operating during the initial phase of the mission. The balloon carries a nephelometer, a magnetometer, a mass spectrometer and stereo microphones and meteorological package. The orbiter carries a gradiometer for determining the gravity field, a synthetic aperture radar for investigating small changes in surface topography and mapping microwave signals from the surface and an IR and UV spectrometer and IR camera for monitoring heat signatures from volcanoes. By using the previous landers as reference points it will also be possible to accurately determine the spin rate with the radar. The nominal mission duration is planned to be five years starting from the release of the balloon. The balloon will operate for 25 days during which it oscillates vertically in the atmosphere between an altitude of 40 and 60 kilometres in a period of about six hours. At the same time, due to prevailing wind directions on Venus, it will gradually spiral from the equator towards higher latitudes. During the balloon science phase the orbiter will be in an elliptical orbit to maximise the time of visibility of the balloon with the orbiter. After this phase, the orbiter will be brought into a circular orbit at an altitude of 250 kilometres. To save fuel, apoapsis lowering will be achieved by aerobreaking in Venus' atmosphere. In the presentation further details about the mission timeline will be given. Particular engineering problems such as thermal control and data communication and the proposed solutions will be presented.

  5. Plasma wave evidence for lightning on Venus

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Robert J. Strangeway

    1995-01-01

    Plasma wave data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter provide the largest body of data cited as evidence for lightning on Venus. These data are also the most controversial, mainly because of the ambiguity in mode identification due to limited spectral information. We review some of the more recent studies of the plasma wave data at Venus, and we demonstrate that

  6. Goals, Objectives, and Investigations for Venus Exploration

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    Goals, Objectives, and Investigations for Venus Exploration May 2014 #12; ii Goals, Objectives, and Investigations for Venus Exploration At the VEXAG meeting in November 2012, it was resolved to update the scientific priorities and strategies for Venus exploration. To achieve this goal, three major

  7. Earth and Venus transmission spectra during transit

    E-print Network

    Widemann, Thomas

    Earth and Venus transmission spectra during transit 3rd Europlanet workshop ­ 4th PHC/Sakura meeting: Venus as a transiting exoplanet March 5 ­ 7 2012, Paris, France A. García Muñoz (Formerly at) Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, La Laguna, Spain Frank P. Mills (Venus work) The Australian National

  8. LIPs on Venus Vicki L. Hansen

    E-print Network

    Hansen, Vicki

    LIPs on Venus Vicki L. Hansen Department of Geological Sciences, University of Minnesota Duluth, Duluth MN 55812, United States Accepted 22 January 2007 Abstract Venus, a planet similar to Earth in heat processes, including regions large enough to be considered LIPs. Thus Venus provides an excellent

  9. Exploring the interior structure of Venus with balloons and satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mimoun, David; Cutts, Jim; Stevenson, Dave

    2015-04-01

    Although present daily in our sky as the brightest object at dusk and dawn, many characteristics of Venus remains a mystery. Its dense atmosphere hides the surface from orbital viewing, and the extreme conditions experienced at its surface (460°C, almost 100 bar of pressure at the surface) pose a formidable challenge to the sustained survival and operation of planetary landers. Despite their sharply contrasting atmospheres, Venus is not very different from Earth in size, its composition should be very similar, its orbit is very close to be circular and it is only a little closer to the Sun ( 0.7 A.U). So what are the processes that turned the twin sister of our planet into such a different object? And how can we better understand the processes that have shaped the terrestrial planets, and to understand their formation history? With its harsh surface environment, conventional seismology on Venus, requiring seismometers to be deployed at the surface for months or even years seems impractical. In June 2014, the Keck Institute for Space Studies (KISS) at the California Institute of Technology sponsored a one-week workshop with 30 specialists in the key techniques and technologies relevant to investigating Venus's interior structure focusing on alternative approaches to seismology . As the vertical component of surface motion on Venus is very efficiently coupled into the atmosphere as infrasonic waves, especially at low frequency, several alternative approaches to detecting seismic events can be considered. Seismo-acoustic waves propagate upwards producing pressure fluctuations in the middle atmosphere of Venus and the seismic wave energy is ultimately dissipated by local heating, ionospheric perturbation, or airglow. These atmospheric perturbations can therefore be recorded either in-situ (with a barometer network, deployed on balloons floating in the cloud layer near 55 km) or remotely via optical imaging or electromagnetic sounding deployed on a spacecraft. A report, describing the findings of a workshop, sponsored by the Keck Institute of Space Studies (KISS), concludes that seismic investigations can be successfully conducted from all three vantage points - surface, middle atmosphere and space; these three vantage points being complementary in the information they provide. These novel techniques open a new window for the exploration of the interior structure of Venus, and enables a roadmap leading to a dedicated geophysical mission to our sister planet.

  10. Dual Balloon Concept for Lifting Payloads from the Surface of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kerzhanovich, Viktor V.; Yavrouian, A. H.; Hall, J. L.; Cutts, J. A.

    2005-01-01

    Introduction: Two high-rated Venus mission concepts proposed in the National Science Foundation Decadal Survey require a balloon to lift payloads from Venusian surface to high altitudes: Venus Surface Sample Return (VESSR) and Venus In-Situ Explorer (VISE). In case of VESSR the payload is a canister with the surface sample plus a Venus ascent vehicle (VAV), which is a rocket that takes the sample into orbit for rendezvous with an Earth return vehicle. VISE is envisioned as a more limited precursor mission where the surface sample is only taken to high altitudes so that non time-critical analyses can be performed. From the balloon point of view, the only difference between these two missions is that the VESSR payload to be lifted is very much larger than VISE because of the inclusion of the VAV. A key problem is that at the time the decadal survey was published, no high temperature balloon technology existed to implement either mission. Prior technology development efforts had concentrated on a single balloon that could operate across the entire 0-60 km altitude range, tolerating both the sulfuric acid aerosols and the extreme temperatures of -10 to +460 C. However, this problem was unsolved because no combination of sufficiently lightweight balloon material and manufacturing (seaming) technology was ever found to tolerate the high temperatures at the surface.

  11. Geological map of the Kaiwan Fluctus Quadrangle (V-44), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bridges, Nathan T.; McGill, George E.

    2002-01-01

    Introduction The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphereon October 12, 1994. Magellan had the objectives of: (1) improving knowledge of the geologic processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Magellan spacecraft carried a 12.6-cm radar system to map the surface of Venus. The transmitter and receiver systems were used to collect three datasets: synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of the surface, passive microwave thermal emission observations, and measurements of the backscattered power at small angles of incidence, which were processed to yield altimetric data. Radar imaging and altimetric and radiometric mapping of the Venusian surface were done in mission cycles 1, 2, and 3, from September 1990 until September of 1992. Ninety-eight percent of the surface was mapped with radar resolution of approximately 120 meters. The SAR observations were projected to a 75-m nominal horizontal resolution; these full-resolution data compose the image base used in geologic mapping. The primary polarization mode was horizontal-transmit, horizontal receive (HH), but additional data for selected areas were collected for the vertical polarization sense. Incidence angles varied from about 20? to 45?. High-resolution Doppler tracking of the spacecraft was done from September 1992 through October 1994 (mission cycles 4, 5, 6). High-resolution gravity observations from about 950 orbits were obtained between September 1992 and May 1993, while Magellan was in an elliptical orbit with a periapsis near 175 kilometers and an apoapsis near 8,000 kilometers. Observations from an additional 1,500 orbits were obtained following orbit-circularization in mid-1993. These data exist as a 75? by 75? harmonic field.

  12. Geologic map of the Carson Quadrangle (V-43), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bender, Kelly C.; Senske, David A.; Greeley, Ronald

    2000-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan had the objectives of (1) improving knowledge of the geologic processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of venusian gravity. The Magellan spacecraft carried a 12.6-cm radar system to map the surface of Venus. The transmitter and receiver systems were used to collect three datasets: synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of the surface, passive microwave thermal emission observations, and measurements of the backscattered power at small angles of incidence, which were processed to yield altimetric data. Radar imaging and altimetric and radiometric mapping of the venusian surface were done in mission cycles 1, 2, and 3, from September 1990 until September 1992. Ninety-eight percent of the surface was mapped with radar resolution of approximately 120 meters. The SAR observations were projected to a 75-m nominal horizontal resolution; these full-resolution data compose the image base used in geologic mapping. The primary polarization mode was horizontal-transmit, horizontal-receive (HH), but additional data for selected areas were collected for the vertical polarization sense. Incidence angles varied from about 20° to 45°. High-resolution Doppler tracking of the spacecraft was done from September 1992 through October 1994 (mission cycles 4, 5, 6). High-resolution gravity observations from about 950 orbits were obtained between September 1992 and May 1993, while Magellan was in an elliptical orbit with a periapsis near 175 kilometers and an apoapsis near 8,000 kilometers. Observations from an additional 1,500 orbits were obtained following orbitcircularization in mid-1993. These data exist as a 75° by 75° harmonic field.

  13. Geologic map of the Pandrosos Dorsa Quadrangle (V-5), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosenberg, Elizabeth; McGill, George E.

    2001-01-01

    Introduction The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan had the objectives of (1) improving knowledge of the geologic processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Magellan spacecraft carried a 12.6-cm radar system to map the surface of Venus. The transmitter and receiver systems were used to collect three datasets: synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of the surface, passive microwave thermal emission observations, and measurements of the backscattered power at small angles of incidence, which were processed to yield altimetric data. Radar imaging and altimetric and radiometric mapping of the Venusian surface were done in mission cycles 1, 2, and 3, from September 1990 until September 1992. Ninety-eight percent of the surface was mapped with radar resolution of approximately 120 meters. The SAR observations were projected to a 75-m nominal horizontal resolution; these full-resolution data compose the image base used in geologic mapping. The primary polarization mode was horizontal-transmit, horizontal-receive (HH), but additional data for selected areas were collected for the vertical polarization sense. Incidence angles varied from about 20? to 45?. High-resolution Doppler tracking of the spacecraft was done from September 1992 through October 1994 (mission cycles 4, 5, 6). High-resolution gravity observations from about 950 orbits were obtained between September 1992 and May 1993, while Magellan was in an elliptical orbit with a periapsis near 175 kilometers and an apoapsis near 8,000 kilometers. Observations from an additional 1,500 orbits were obtained following orbitcircularization in mid-1993. These data exist as a 75? by 75? harmonic field.

  14. Geologic map of the Bell Regio Quadrangle (V-9), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Campbell, Bruce A.; Campbell, Patricia G.

    2002-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan had the objectives of (1) improving knowledge of the geologic processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of venusian gravity. The Magellan spacecraft carried a 12.6-cm radar system to map the surface of Venus. The transmitter and receiver systems were used to collect three datasets: synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of the surface, passive microwave thermal emission observations, and measurements of the backscattered power at small angles of incidence, which were processed to yield altimetric data. Radar imaging and altimetric and radiometric mapping of the venusian surface were done in mission cycles 1, 2, and 3, from September 1990 until September 1992. Ninety-eight percent of the surface was mapped with radar resolution of approximately 120 meters. The SAR observations were projected to a 75-m nominal horizontal resolution; these full-resolution data compose the image base used in geologic mapping. The primary polarization mode was horizontal-transmit, horizontal-receive (HH), but additional data for selected areas were collected for the vertical polarization sense. Incidence angles varied from about 20° to 45°. High-resolution Doppler tracking of the spacecraft was done from September 1992 through October 1994 (mission cycles 4, 5, 6). High-resolution gravity observations from about 950 orbits were obtained between September 1992 and May 1993, while Magellan was in an elliptical orbit with a periapsis near 175 kilometers and an apoapsis near 8,000 kilometers. Observations from an additional 1,500 orbits were obtained following orbitcircularization in mid-1993. These data exist as a 75° by 75° harmonic field.

  15. Episodic plate tectonics on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Turcotte, Donald

    1992-01-01

    Studies of impact craters on Venus from the Magellan images have placed important constraints on surface volcanism. Some 840 impact craters have been identified with diameters ranging from 2 to 280 km. Correlations of this impact flux with craters on the Moon, Earth, and Mars indicate a mean surface age of 0.5 +/- 0.3 Ga. Another important observation is that 52 percent of the craters are slightly fractured and only 4.5 percent are embayed by lava flows. These observations led researchers to hypothesize that a pervasive resurfacing event occurred about 500 m.y. ago and that relatively little surface volcanism has occurred since. Other researchers have pointed out that a global resurfacing event that ceased about 500 MYBP is consistent with the results given by a recent study. These authors carried out a series of numerical calculations of mantle convection in Venus yielding thermal evolution results. Their model considered crustal recycling and gave rapid planetary cooling. They, in fact, suggested that prior to 500 MYBP plate tectonics was active in Venus and since 500 MYBP the lithosphere has stabilized and only hot-spot volcanism has reached the surface. We propose an alternative hypothesis for the inferred cessation of surface volcanism on Venus. We hypothesize that plate tectonics on Venus is episodic. Periods of rapid plate tectonics result in high rates of subduction that cool the interior resulting in more sluggish mantle convection.

  16. Thermal Structure of Venus Night-Side Atmosphere as Seen by Ground-Based Heterodyne Observations at 10?m

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stangier, Tobias; Sornig, Manuela; Hewagama, Tilak; Tellmann, Silvia; Pätzold, Martin; Krause, Pia; Kostiuk, Theodor; Livengood, Timothy

    2014-05-01

    The structure of Venus atmosphere has been the target of intense studies in the past decade. The recent space mission Venus Express (VEX) has shed light on many open question concerning the thermal and dynamical behavior of its atmosphere. In the vicinity of the imminent shut down of the space craft, the importance of ground-based observations increases significantly. We want to introduce a new and unique opportunity to retrieve temperature profiles from the Venusian night-side atmosphere, using ground-based observation techniques. The application of heterodyne spectroscopy in the infrared enables the capability to resolve single molecular ro-vibrational transition features. Pressure broadened CO2 absorption lines, observable on the Venusian night side, have proven to be a good tracer for analyzing the predominant temperature. The profiles originate from the altitude region between the cloud top at ~65km (~100hPa) and 95km (~0.1hPa). With a spectral limited altitude resolution of 5.3km, vertical profiles can be variably deduced on various position on the planet. Initial results from two observing campaigns in March (A) and May (B) 2012 will be presented. During campaign A, Venus was shortly after maximum Eastern elongation and about 45% illuminated, while on campaign B, the Planet was close to its latest transit and thus almost completely dark. At each campaign, two different locations on the planet were investigated, by probing the CO2 P(12) transition at 10.5?m. A comparison to space-based data, including a coordinated observation with VEX, performed during campaign B, and the spatial variability of the temperature profiles are under investigation.

  17. Wave granulation in the Venus' atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochemasov, G.

    2007-08-01

    In unique venusian planetary system the solid body rotates very slowly and the detached massive atmosphere very rapidly. However both together orbit Sun and their characteristic orbital frequency -1/ 0.62 year - places them in the regular row of planets assigning them characteristic only for Venus wave produced granulation with a granule size ?R/6 [1& others]. Remind other bodies in the row with their granule sizes inversely proportional to their orbital frequencies: solar photosphere ?R/60, Mercury ?R/16, Venus ?R/6, Earth ?R/4, Mars ?R/2, asteroids ?R/1 (R-a body radius). Three planets have atmospheres with wave granulations having sizes equal to their lithospheric granules. But Venus, unlike Earth and Mars, has the detached atmosphere that can be considered as a separate body with its own orbital frequency around the center of the Venus' system. According to the correlation between an orbital frequency and a wave granule size the venusian wave granule will be ?R/338 (a scale can be Earth: orbital frequency 1/ 1year, granule size ?R/4 or Sun: frequency 1/1month, granule size ?R/60). So, ?R/338 = 57 km. This theoretical size is rather close to that observed by Galileo SC through a violet filter "the filamentary dark features. . . are here revealed to be composed of several dark nodules, like beads on a string, each about 60 miles across" (PIA00072). Actually all Venus' disc seen from a distance ~1.7mln.miles is peppered with these fine features seen on a limit of resolution. So, the Venus' atmosphere has two main frequencies in the solar system with corresponding wave granulations: around Sun 1/225 days (granule ?R/6) and around Venus 1/ 4 days (granule ?R/338). As was done for the Moon, Phobos, Titan and other icy satellites of Saturn [2, 3, 4 & others] one can apply the wave modulation technique also for the atmosphere of Venus. The lower frequency modulates the higher one by dividing and multiplying it thus getting two side frequencies and corresponding them wave granule sizes. (1/338 : 1/6)?R = ?R/56.3 = 342 km. (1/338 x 1/6)?R = ?R/2028 = 9.5 km. The larger granules as well arranged network were seen in the near IR Galileo image PIA00073 (several miles below the visible cloud tops). The smaller granules, hopefully, will be detected by the Venus Express cameras. So, the wave planetology applying wave methods to solid planetary bodies and to surrounding them gaseous envelopes shows their structural unity. This understanding may help to analyze and predict very complex behavior of atmospheric sells at Earth (anticyclones up to 5000 km across or ?R/4), other planets and Titan. Long time ago known the solar supergranules about 30000 km across were never fully understood. The comparative wave planetology placing them together with wave features of planets and satellites throws light on their origin and behavior and thus expands into an area of the solar physics. In this respect it is interesting to note that rather typical for Sun radio emission in 1 meter diapason also was never properly explained. But applying modulation of the solar photosphere frequency 1/ 1month by the Galaxy frequency 1/ 200 000 000 y. one can obtain such short waves [5]. Radio emissions of planets of the solar system also can be related to this modulation by Galaxy rotation [5]. References: [1] Kochemasov G.G. (1992) Comparison of blob tectonics (Venus) and pair tectonics (Earth) // LPS XXIII, Houston, LPI, pt. 2, 703-704; [2] Kochemasov G.G. (2000) Orbiting frequency modulation in Solar system and its imprint in shapes and structures of celestial bodies // Vernadsky-Brown microsymposium 32 on Comparative planetology, Oct. 9-11, 2000, Moscow, Russia, Abstracs, 88-89; [3] Kochemasov G.G. (2000) Titan: frequency modulation of warping waves // Geophys. Res. Abstr., v. 2, (CD-ROM); [4] Kochemasov G.G. (2005) Cassini' lessons: square craters, shoulderto- shoulder even-size aligned and in grids craters having wave interference nature must be taken out of an impact craters statistics to make it real // Vernadsky-Brown

  18. Wave granulation in the Venus' atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochemasov, G.

    2007-08-01

    In unique venusian planetary system the solid body rotates very slowly and the detached massive atmosphere very rapidly. However both together orbit Sun and their characteristic orbital frequency -1/ 0.62 year - places them in the regular row of planets assigning them characteristic only for Venus wave produced granulation with a granule size ?R/6 [1& others]. Remind other bodies in the row with their granule sizes inversely proportional to their orbital frequencies: solar photosphere ?R/60, Mercury ?R/16, Venus ?R/6, Earth ?R/4, Mars ?R/2, asteroids ?R/1 (R-a body radius). Three planets have atmospheres with wave granulations having sizes equal to their lithospheric granules. But Venus, unlike Earth and Mars, has the detached atmosphere that can be considered as a separate body with its own orbital frequency around the center of the Venus' system. According to the correlation between an orbital frequency and a wave granule size the venusian wave granule will be ?R/338 (a scale can be Earth: orbital frequency 1/ 1year, granule size ?R/4 or Sun: frequency 1/1month, granule size ?R/60). So, ?R/338 = 57 km. This theoretical size is rather close to that observed by Galileo SC through a violet filter "the filamentary dark features. . . are here revealed to be composed of several dark nodules, like beads on a string, each about 60 miles across" (PIA00072). Actually all Venus' disc seen from a distance ?1.7mln.miles is peppered with these fine features seen on a limit of resolution. So, the Venus' atmosphere has two main frequencies in the solar system with corresponding wave granulations: around Sun 1/225 days (granule ?R/6) and around Venus 1/ 4 days (granule ?R/338). As was done for the Moon, Phobos, Titan and other icy satellites of Saturn [2, 3, 4 & others] one can apply the wave modulation technique also for the atmosphere of Venus. The lower frequency modulates the higher one by dividing and multiplying it thus getting two side frequencies and corresponding them wave granule sizes. (1/338 : 1/6)?R = ?R/56.3 = 342 km. (1/338 x 1/6)?R = ?R/2028 = 9.5 km. The larger granules as well arranged network were seen in the near IR Galileo image PIA00073 (several miles below the visible cloud tops). The smaller granules, hopefully, will be detected by the Venus Express cameras. So, the wave planetology applying wave methods to solid planetary bodies and to surrounding them gaseous envelopes shows their structural unity. This understanding may help to analyze and predict very complex behavior of atmospheric sells at Earth (anticyclones up to 5000 km across or ?R/4), other planets and Titan. Long time ago known the solar supergranules about 30000 km across were never fully understood. The comparative wave planetology placing them together with wave features of planets and satellites throws light on their origin and behavior and thus expands into an area of the solar physics. In this respect it is interesting to note that rather typical for Sun radio emission in 1 meter diapason also was never properly explained. But applying modulation of the solar photosphere frequency 1/ 1month by the Galaxy frequency 1/ 200 000 000 y. one can obtain such short waves [5]. Radio emissions of planets of the solar system also can be related to this modulation by Galaxy rotation [5]. References: [1] Kochemasov G.G. (1992) Comparison of blob tectonics (Venus) and pair tectonics (Earth) // LPS XXIII, Houston, LPI, pt. 2, 703-704; [2] Kochemasov G.G. (2000) Orbiting frequency modulation in Solar system and its imprint in shapes and structures of celestial bodies // Vernadsky-Brown microsymposium 32 on Comparative planetology, Oct. 9-11, 2000, Moscow, Russia, Abstracs, 88-89; [3] Kochemasov G.G. (2000) Titan: frequency modulation of warping waves // Geophys. Res. Abstr., v. 2, (CD-ROM); [4] Kochemasov G.G. (2005) Cassini' lessons: square craters, shoulderto- shoulder even-size aligned and in grids craters having wave interference nature must be taken out of an impact craters statistics to make it real // Vernadsky-Brown

  19. Venus - Barton Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    During orbits 404 through 414 on 19-20 September 1990, Magellan imaged a peak-ring crater that is 50 kilometers in diameter located at latitude 27.4 degrees north and longitude 337.5 degrees east. The name Barton has been proposed by the Magellan Science Team for this crater, after Clara Barton, founder of the Red Cross; however, the name is tentative pending approval by the International Astronomical Union.

    Barton is just at the diameter size that Venus craters appear to begin to possess peak-rings instead of a single central peak or central peak complex like does 75 percent of the craters with diameters between 50 and about 15 kilometers. The floor of the crater is flat and radar-dark, indicating possible infilling by volcanic deposits sometime following the impact event. Barton's central peak ring is discontinuous and appears to have been disrupted or separated during or following the cratering process. The extremely blocky crater deposits (ejecta) surrounding Barton appear to be most extensive on the southwest to southeast (lower left to right) side of the crater.

  20. Clouds of Venus. Input to VIRA.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ignatiev, Nikolay; Zasova, Ludmila

    2012-07-01

    Venus is completely covered by a thick clod deck. Its' total optical depth in the visible is equal to 30+/-10. Original VIRA model based on the measurements from Pioneer Venus descent probes and orbiter described mainly cloud particle sizes, properties and their vertical distribution. Later measurements from Venera-15 and Venus Express permitted more detailed studies of horizontal and vertical variations. Imaging of Venus in the UV range shows variety of cloud features that include mottled and streaky clouds in the low latitudes, bright mid-latitude belt and ``polar cap'' with imbedded oval polar dipole. Despite this non-uniform picture the location of the upper boundary of the clouds, derived from the observation of the absorption bands in the reflected IR spectrum, demonstrates a smooth systematic behavior with the latitudinal trends symmetric with respect to equator. In low and middle latitudes the cloud top is located at 72+/-1 km. It decreases poleward of +/-50 degrees and reaches 63--69 km in polar regions. This depression coincides with the eye of the planetary vortex. The effective average particle size radius is equal to (1.3+/-0.5) micron at latitudes of 0--70, with a peak value some 50% larger in the polar regions. Cloud top can experience fast variations of about metricconverterProductID1 km1 km in tens of hours, while larger long-term variations of several kilometers have been observed only at high latitudes. UV markings correlate with the cloud altimetry, however the difference between adjacent UV dark and bright regions never exceeds few hundred meters. Ultraviolet dark spiral arms, which are often seen at about --70 degress, correspond to higher altitudes or to the regions with strong latitudinal gradient of the cloud top altitude. In contrast to the relatively uniform upper cloud boundary, strong variations of the brightness temperature at specific near infrared wavelengths, especially in low latitudes, are related to variations of the cloud thickness in the middle and low cloud decks consistent with significant convective activity at these levels. The morphology of the holes tends from highly variable orientations of features with aspect ratios of nearly one at low latitudes, to very large aspect ratios and zonally oriented features at higher latitudes.

  1. Response of Venus exospheric temperature measured by neutral mass spectrometer to solar EUV flux measured by Langmuir probe on the Pioneer Venus orbiter

    SciTech Connect

    Mahajan, K.K.; Kasprzak, W.T.; Brace, L.H.; Niemann, H.B.; Hoegy, W.R. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD (United States))

    1990-02-01

    The photoelectron current from the Pioneer Venus Langmuir probe has provided measurements of the total flux of solar EUV photons at Venus since 1979. The neutral oxygen scale height measured by the orbiter neutral mass spectrometer has permitted the exospheric temperature to be derived furing the same mission. In this paper the EUV observations are used to examine the response of exospheric temperature to changes in solar activity, primarily those related to solar rotation. It is found that the dayside exospheric temperature quite faithfully tracks variations in the EUV flux. Comparison is also made with the Earth-based solar activity index F{sub 10.7} adjusted to the position of Venus. This index varied from 142 to 249 flux units (10{sup {minus}22} W m{sup {minus}2} Hz{sup {minus}1}) during the period of measurements. The exospheric temperature is better correlated with EUV flux than with the 10.7-cm solar radio flux.

  2. A comparison of induced magnetotails of planetary bodies: Venus, Mars, and Titan

    SciTech Connect

    Luhmann, J.G.; Russell, C.T. (Univ. of California, Los Angeles (USA)); Schwingenschuh, K. (Space Research Inst., Graz (Austria)); Yeroshenko, Ye. (USSR Space Research Inst., Moscow (USSR))

    1991-07-01

    The Pioneer Venus orbiter (PVO), PHOBOS 2, and Voyager 1 spacecraft have together provided observations of three planetary bodies with induced magnetotails: Venus, Mars, and Titan. During the extended mission of PVO, the tail of Venus was probed at an altitude of {approximately} 1.3 planetary radii, which provided a more appropriate basis for comparison with the Mars data (at {approximately} 2.7 planetary radii), and Titan data ({approximately} 2.5 planetary radii downstream), then the previously analyzed Venus tail data obtained near PVO apoapsis ({approximately} 12 planetary radii). A parallel examination of the magnetic properties of these tails at downstream distances within 3 planetary radii reveals the following similarities and differences. In the cases of Venus and Mars, which are always embedded in the supermagnetosonic solar wind flow, the tail lobe fields are smoothly joined to the draped magnetosheath fields at their outer boundaries, but separated in the center by a distinct, and sometimes narrow, current sheet. The tail of Mars has a cross section that is wider, when scaled by the planet radius, than that at Venus (as found by earlier MARS spacecraft experiments), a lobe field strength that is about the same as that at Venus by {approximately}1.5 times. The tail of Titan appears similar to the others except that there is no bow shock and little or no draped magnetosheath field signature since the surrounding magnetospheric plasma flow is submagnetosonic (although super-Alfvenic). The lobe field strengths are about half those at Venus and Mars, while the cross-tail field is almost negligible. The near-Titan tail diameter is close to the body diameter.

  3. Ionospheric magnetic fields at Venus and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Zhang, T. L.; Woch, J.; Wei, Y.

    2014-04-01

    Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) and Venus Express(VEX) spacecraft have provided us a wealth of insitu observations of characteristics of induced magnetospheres of Mars and Venus at low altitudes during the periods of solar minimum. At such conditions the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) penetrates deeply inside the ionosphere while the solar wind is terminated at higher altitudes. We present the measurements made by MGS and VEX in the ionospheres of both planets which reveal similar features of the magnetization. The arising magnetic field pattern occurs strongly asymmetrical with respect to the direction of the cross-flow component of the IMF revealing either a sudden straightening of the field lines with a release of the magnetic field stresses or a sudden rotation of the magnetic field vector with a reversal of the sign of the cross-flow component. Such an asymmetrical response is observed at altitudes where the motion of ions and electrons is decoupled and collisional effects become important for generation of the electric currents Asymmetry in the field topology significantly modifies a plasma transport to the night side.

  4. Rate of volcanism on Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Fegley, B. Jr.; Prinn, R.G.

    1988-07-01

    The maintenance of the global H/sub 2/SO/sub 4/ clouds on Venus requires volcanism to replenish the atmospheric SO/sub 2/ which is continually being removed from the atmosphere by reaction with calcium minerals on the surface of Venus. The first laboratory measurements of the rate of one such reaction, between SO/sub 2/ and calcite (CaCO/sub 3/) to form anhydrite (CaSO/sub 4/), are reported. If the rate of this reaction is representative of the SO/sub 2/ reaction rate at the Venus surface, then we estimate that all SO/sub 2/ in the Venus atmosphere (and thus the H/sub 2/SO/sub 4/ clouds) will be removed in 1.9 million years unless the lost SO/sub 2/ is replenished by volcanism. The required rate of volcanism ranges from about 0.4 to about 11 cu km of magma erupted per year, depending on the assumed sulfur content of the erupted material. If this material has the same composition as the Venus surface at the Venera 13, 14 and Vega 2 landing sites, then the required rate of volcanism is about 1 cu km per year. This independent geochemically estimated rate can be used to determine if either (or neither) of the two discordant (2 cu km/year vs. 200 to 300 cu km/year) geophysically estimated rates is correct. The geochemically estimated rate also suggests that Venus is less volcanically active than the Earth.

  5. Data from Russian Planetary Missions

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Michael A'Hearn; A. Zakharov; Lev Zelenyi

    2008-01-01

    The Russian Federal Space Program for 2006-2015 includes three major flight projects - Phobos- Soil, Luna-Glob, and Venus-D. Of these, only the first is in active development now, with launch planned for the 2009 Martian launch window. The primary goal of the Phobos-Soil mission, to be described in detail in session B04, is to return a sample of soil from

  6. A mantle plume model for the Equatorial Highlands of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, Walter S.; Hager, Bradford H.

    1991-01-01

    The possibility that the Equatorial Highlands are the surface expressions of hot upwelling mantle plumes is considered via a series of mantle plume models developed using a cylindrical axisymmetric finite element code and depth-dependent Newtonian rheology. The results are scaled by assuming whole mantle convection and that Venus and the earth have similar mantle heat flows. The best model fits are for Beta and Atla. The common feature of the allowed viscosity models is that they lack a pronounced low-viscosity zone in the upper mantle. The shape of Venus's long-wavelength admittance spectrum and the slope of its geoid spectrum are also consistent with the lack of a low-viscosity zone. It is argued that the lack of an asthenosphere on Venus is due to the mantle of Venus being drier than the earth's mantle. Mantle plumes may also have contributed to the formation of some smaller highland swells, such as the Bell and Eistla regions and the Hathor/Innini/Ushas region.

  7. Composition of the Venus atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Von Zahn, U.; Kumar, S.; Niemann, H.; Prinn, R.

    1983-01-01

    After giving an historical account of the development of Venus atmospheric composition explorations and the various instrumental techniques used in them, attention is given to recommended values for the mixing ratios of gases at altitudes below 100 km. Together with the various constituent groups of gases, their observations, and related processes and models, the mathematical background for current one-dimensional photochemical and transport models is given. Excited species are then discussed, and references to upper limits for the abundances of unobserved gases are listed. Available data on isotopic abundances are assessed, and questions pertinent to the further investigation of the Venus atmosphere's origin and evolution are formulated.

  8. Definition and archiving of ground-based observations in support of space missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coustenis, A.; Europlanet Wg3&5

    This science case was developed by the WG3&5 to induce and optimize the follow- up of space missions or to monitor a probe entry, in order to provide support in the case of failure, and help achieve science objectives. The space mission data need to be complemented by ground-based and space-borne observations that can help interpret the space mission return. Such coordinated observations were performed at the time of the Huygens descent in Titan's atmosphere and led to a JGR special issue publication (2006, in press). We should gather and archive all such observations to support space missions already existing or to come. For this we would need to get the space mission data from Cassini-Huygens (both images and spectra), Venus Express, Mars Express and future missions (to Europa and Mercury for instance) and complete them with ground-based observations (spectra, images, radio data, radar,...) of Titan, Venus, Mars, Europa, Mercury with the HST, ISO, etc, as well as amateur observations, if possible, taken from 1990 on. This applies to cometary, moon and planet surfaces/subsurfaces composition- structure. This would help among other with the target selections (comets, moons) and landing sites for SMART-1 (on the Moon). There are specific needs for stereoscopic images of the Moon and other objects. Our study will assist in optimizing the Rosetta mission return. For Mercury we need to observe from the ground at the time of the Bepi-Colombo mission to cross-calibrate the mission data. There are many examples of success from this additional input, as for instance with Cassini-Huygens (DWE- Channel C), Galileo, etc. For Titan there is a requirement for RADAR measurements of the whole surface during the extended Cassini mission. Also, assist with the interpretation of high-resolution DISR images in terms of surface activity and surface-atmosphere interactions This involves in some cases techniques possible only from the Earth such as the VLBI 1 radio-tracking of a space mission with probe signal during entry or landing and a radar search for solid and liquid extents on moon surfaces. We need to assure extended temporal monitoring to study diurnal or seasonal effects and complete planetary objects' lightcurves and derive insights on the evolution of their surface properties 2

  9. Venus Atmospheric Exploration by Solar Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; LaMarre, C.; Colozza, A.

    2002-01-01

    The Venus atmosphere is a favorable environment for flying powered aircraft. The atmospheric pressure makes flight much easier than on planets such as Mars. Above the clouds, solar energy is available in abundance on Venus, and the slow rotation of Venus allows a solar airplane to be designed for flight within continuous sunlight. The atmosphere between 50 km and 75 km on Venus is one of the most dynamic and interesting regions of the planet. The challenge for a Venus aircraft will be the fierce winds and caustic atmosphere. In order to remain on the sunlit side of Venus, an exploration aircraft will have to be capable of sustained flight at or above the wind speed. An aircraft would be a powerful tool for exploration. By learning how Venus can be so similar to Earth, and yet so different, we will learn to better understand the climate and geological history of the Earth.

  10. Extreme Environment Simulation - Current and New Capabilities to Simulate Venus and Other Planetary Bodies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kremic, Tibor; Vento, Dan; Lalli, Nick; Palinski, Timothy

    2014-01-01

    Science, technology, and planetary mission communities have a growing interest in components and systems that are capable of working in extreme (high) temperature and pressure conditions. Terrestrial applications range from scientific research, aerospace, defense, automotive systems, energy storage and power distribution, deep mining and others. As the target environments get increasingly extreme, capabilities to develop and test the sensors and systems designed to operate in such environments will be required. An application of particular importance to the planetary science community is the ability for a robotic lander to survive on the Venus surface where pressures are nearly 100 times that of Earth and temperatures approach 500C. The scientific importance and relevance of Venus missions are stated in the current Planetary Decadal Survey. Further, several missions to Venus were proposed in the most recent Discovery call. Despite this interest, the ability to accurately simulate Venus conditions at a scale that can test and validate instruments and spacecraft systems and accurately simulate the Venus atmosphere has been lacking. This paper discusses and compares the capabilities that are known to exist within and outside the United States to simulate the extreme environmental conditions found in terrestrial or planetary surfaces including the Venus atmosphere and surface. The paper then focuses on discussing the recent additional capability found in the NASA Glenn Extreme Environment Rig (GEER). The GEER, located at the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio, is designed to simulate not only the temperature and pressure extremes described, but can also accurately reproduce the atmospheric compositions of bodies in the solar system including those with acidic and hazardous elements. GEER capabilities and characteristics are described along with operational considerations relevant to potential users. The paper presents initial operating results and concludes with a sampling of investigations or tests that have been requested or expected.

  11. Roadmap for Venus Exploration (rev. 3, Dec 5, 2013)

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    1 Roadmap for Venus Exploration (rev. 3, Dec 5, 2013) Introduction Venus is so similar". Despite these similarities, however, Venus has gone down a very different evolutionary path. Venus today the study of Venus provides unique and important opportunities to understand not only the general processes

  12. Roadmap for Venus Exploration (Version 4, 1/29/14)

    E-print Network

    Rathbun, Julie A.

    1 Roadmap for Venus Exploration (Version 4, 1/29/14) Introduction Venus is so similar". Despite these similarities, however, Venus has gone down a very different evolutionary path. Venus today the study of Venus provides unique and important opportunities to understand not only the general processes

  13. Power System for Venus Surface Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Mellott, Kenneth

    2002-01-01

    A radioisotope power and cooling system is designed to provide electrical power for a probe operating on the surface of Venus. Most foreseeable electronics devices and sensors cannot operate at the 450 C ambient surface temperature of Venus. Because the mission duration is substantially long and the use of thermal mass to maintain an operable temperature range is likely impractical, some type of active refrigeration may be required to keep electronic components at a temperature below ambient. The fundamental cooling parameters are the cold sink temperature, the hot sink temperature, and the amount of heat to be removed. In this instance, it is anticipated that electronics would have a nominal operating temperature of 300 C. Due to the highly thermal convective nature of the high-density (90 bar CO2) atmosphere, the hot sink temperature was assumed to be 50 C, which provided a 500 C temperature of the cooler's heat rejecter to the ambient atmosphere. The majority of the heat load on the cooler is from the high temperature ambient surface environment on Venus, with a small contribution of heat generation from electronics and sensors. Both thermoelectric (RTG) and dynamic power conversion systems were analyzed, based on use of a standard isotope (General-purpose heat source, or GPHS) brick. For the radioisotope Stirling power converter configuration designed, the Sage model predicts a thermodynamic power output capacity of 478.1 watts, which slightly exceeds the required 469.1 watts. The hot sink temperature is 1200 C, and the cold sink temperature is 500 C. The required heat input is 1740 watts. This gives a thermodynamic efficiency of 27.48 %. It is estimated that the mechanical efficiency of the power converter design is on the order of 85 %, based on experimental measurements taken from 500-watt power class, laboratory-tested Stirling engines. The overall efficiency is calculated to be 23.36 %. The mass of the power converter is estimated at approximately 21.6 kg. Additional information is included in the original extended abstract.

  14. Pancakelike domes on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mckenzie, Dan; Ford, Peter G.; Liu, Fang; Pettengill, Gordon H.

    1992-01-01

    The shape of seven large domes on the plains of Venus, with volumes between 100 and 1000 cu km, is compared with that of an axisymmetric gravity current spreading over a rigid horizontal surface. Both the altimetric profiles and the horizontal projection of the line of intersection of domes on the SAR images agree well with the theoretical similarity solution for a newtonian fluid, but not with the shape calculated for a rigid-plastic rheology, nor with that for a static model with a strong skin. As a viscous current spreads, it generates an isotropic strain rate tensor whose magnitude is independent of radius. Such a flow can account for the randomly oriented cracks that are uniformly distributed on the surface of the domes. The stress induced by the flow in the plains material below is obtained, and is probably large enough to produce the short radial cracks in the surface of the plains beyond the domes. The viscosity of the domes can be estimated from their thermal time constants if spreading is possible only when the fluid is hot, and lies between 10(exp 14) and 10(exp 17) Pa s. Laboratory experiments show that such viscosities correspond to temperatures of 610 - 690 C in dry rhyolitic magmas. These temperatures agree with laboratory measurements of the solidus temperature of wet rhyolite. These results show that the development of the domes can be understood using simple fluid dynamical ideas, and that the magmas involved can be produced by wet melting at depths below 10 km, followed by eruption and degassing.

  15. The effect of dys-1 mutation on miRNA expression profile in Caenorhabditis elegans during Shenzhou-8 mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Dan; Sun, Yeqing; Gao, Ying; Xing, Yanfang

    microRNAs (miRNAs) is reported to be sensitive to radiation exposure and altered gravity, involved in a variety of biological processes through negative regulation of gene expression. Dystrophin-like dys-1 gene is expressed and required in muscle tissue, which plays a vital role in mechanical transduction when gravity varies. In the present study, we investigated the effect of dys-1 mutation on miRNA expression profile in Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) under space radiation associated with microgravity (R+M) and radiation alone (R) environment during Shenzhou-8 mission. We performed miRNA microarray analysis in dys-1 mutant and wide-type (WT) of dauer larvae and found that 27 miRNAs changed in abundance after spaceflight. Compared with WT, there was different miRNA expression pattern in different treatments in dys-1 mutant. Cel-miR-796 and miR-124 were reversely expressed under R+M and R environment in WT and dys-1 mutant, respectively, indicating they might be affected by microgravity. Mutation of dys-1 remarkably reduced the number of altered miRNAs under space environment, resulting in the decrease of genes in biological categories of “body morphogenesis”, “behavior”, “cell adhesion” and so on. Particularly, we found that those genes controlling regulation of locomotion in WT were lost in dys-1 mutant, while genes in positive regulation of developmental process only existed in dys-1 mutant. miR-796 was predicted to target genes ace-1 and dyc-1 that are functionally linked to dys-1. Integration analysis of miRNA and mRNA expression profile revealed that miR-56 and miR-124 were involved in behavior and locomotion by regulating different target genes under space environment, among which nep-11, deb-1, C07H4.1 and F11H8.2 might be associated with neuromuscular system. Our findings suggest that dys-1 could cause alteration of miRNAs and target genes, involved in regulating the response of C. elegans to space microgravity in neuromuscular system. This research will provide new insight for better understanding of the mechanism in microgravity-induced muscular dystrophy.

  16. Neurogenin2-d4Venus and Gadd45g-d4Venus transgenic mice: Visualizing mitotic and migratory behaviors of cells committed to the neuronal lineage in the developing mammalian brain

    PubMed Central

    Kawaue, Takumi; Sagou, Ken; Kiyonari, Hiroshi; Ota, Kumiko; Okamoto, Mayumi; Shinoda, Tomoyasu; Kawaguchi, Ayano; Miyata, Takaki

    2014-01-01

    To achieve highly sensitive and comprehensive assessment of the morphology and dynamics of cells committed to the neuronal lineage in mammalian brain primordia, we generated two transgenic mouse lines expressing a destabilized (d4) Venus controlled by regulatory elements of the Neurogenin2 (Neurog2) or Gadd45g gene. In mid-embryonic neocortical walls, expression of Neurog2-d4Venus mostly overlapped with that of Neurog2 protein, with a slightly (1 h) delayed onset. Although Neurog2-d4Venus and Gadd45g-d4Venus mice exhibited very similar labeling patterns in the ventricular zone (VZ), in Gadd45g-d4Venus mice cells could be visualized in more basal areas containing fully differentiated neurons, where Neurog2-d4Venus fluorescence was absent. Time-lapse monitoring revealed that most d4Venus+ cells in the VZ had processes extending to the apical surface; many of these cells eventually retracted their apical process and migrated basally to the subventricular zone, where neurons, as well as the intermediate neurogenic progenitors that undergo terminal neuron-producing division, could be live-monitored by d4Venus fluorescence. Some d4Venus+ VZ cells instead underwent nuclear migration to the apical surface, where they divided to generate two d4Venus+ daughter cells, suggesting that the symmetric terminal division that gives rise to neuron pairs at the apical surface can be reliably live-monitored. Similar lineage-committed cells were observed in other developing neural regions including retina, spinal cord, and cerebellum, as well as in regions of the peripheral nervous system such as dorsal root ganglia. These mouse lines will be useful for elucidating the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying development of the mammalian nervous system. PMID:24712911

  17. Observations of the microwave emission of Venus from 1. 3 to 3. 6 cm

    SciTech Connect

    Steffes, P.G.; Jenkins, J.M.; Klein, M.J. (Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta (USA) JPL, Pasadena, CA (USA))

    1990-03-01

    An account is given of the methodology as well as the results of coordinated Venus emission observations conducted at four wavelengths between 1.35 and 3.6 cm; the results are compared with other observations and with calculated mission spectra, with a view to suggestions that the microwave spectrum of Venus could be sensitive to the subcloud abundance of such constituents as SO2 and gaseous H2SO4. The observed emission spectrum is consistent with an average subcloud abundance of gaseous H2SO4 in equatorial and midlatitude regions of about 5 ppm. An upper limit is established for the subcloud SO2 abundance. 19 refs.

  18. Earth/Venus Rotation Movie

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    2005-09-01

    This movie shows Venus and Earth as they rotate. The images are superimposed on each other so that differences in rotation speed and tilt of axes can be seen. Links to documents describing the physical properties and characteristics of the two planets are provided.

  19. Phlogopite Decomposition, Water, and Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, N. M.; Fegley, B., Jr.

    2005-01-01

    Venus is a hot and dry planet with a surface temperature of 660 to 740 K and 30 parts per million by volume (ppmv) water vapor in its lower atmosphere. In contrast Earth has an average surface temperature of 288 K and 1-4% water vapor in its troposphere. The hot and dry conditions on Venus led many to speculate that hydrous minerals on the surface of Venus would not be there today even though they might have formed in a potentially wetter past. Thermodynamic calculations predict that many hydrous minerals are unstable under current Venusian conditions. Thermodynamics predicts whether a particular mineral is stable or not, but we need experimental data on the decomposition rate of hydrous minerals to determine if they survive on Venus today. Previously, we determined the decomposition rate of the amphibole tremolite, and found that it could exist for billions of years at current surface conditions. Here, we present our initial results on the decomposition of phlogopite mica, another common hydrous mineral on Earth.

  20. Venus and Mercury as Planets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1974-01-01

    A general evolutionary history of the solar planetary system is given. The previously observed characteristics of Venus and Mercury (i.e. length of day, solar orbit, temperature) are discussed. The role of the Mariner 10 space probe in gathering scientific information on the two planets is briefly described.

  1. Venus ionopause during solar minimum

    SciTech Connect

    Mahajan, K.K.; Mayr, H.G.

    1989-12-01

    During solar minimum, the Venus ionosphere is weak and the solar wind depresses the ionopause to a limiting altitude (Knudsen et al., 1987). With the knowledge gained from the ion composition measurements on Pioneer Venus during solar maximum and during conditions of high solar wind pressure, the authors argue that the typical topside electron density profile at Venus during solar minimum has two distinct regimes; one from about 140 km (the altitude of peak electron density) to 180 km and the other above 180 km. While the former is dominated by O{sub 2}{sup +} ions which are in photochemical equilibrium, the latter is dominated by O{sup +} ions which are strongly disturbed by the solar wind induced plasma transport. The disturbed ionosphere is formed in the photodynamical regime and has a scale height which is several times smaller than that expected under undisturbed conditions when the ionosphere is in diffusive equilibrium. The small scale height of the disturbed ionosphere is nearly equal to that of the ionizable constituent, atomic oxygen, and is only slightly larger than the chemical equilibrium scale height of the underlying chemical equilibrium region. While the photodynamical ionopause occurs rarely during solar maximum and only when the solar wind pressure is large, we believe that this kind of ionopause is observed much more frequently during solar minimum. The authors find evidence for this in the radio occultation data from Pioneer Venus, Mariner 10 and Venera 9 and 10.

  2. Venus topography - A harmonic analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bills, B. G.; Kobrick, M.

    1985-01-01

    A model of Venusian global topography has been obtained by fitting an eighteenth-degree harmonic series to Pioneer Venus orbiter radar altimeter data. The mean radius is (6051.45 + or - 0.04) km. The corresponding mean density is (5244.8 + or 0.5) kg/cu m. The center of figure is displaced from the center of mass by (0.339 + or - 0.088) km towards (6.6 + or 10.1) deg N, (148. 8 + or - 7.7) deg. The figure of Venus is distinctly triaxial, but the orientation and magnitudes of the principal topographic axes correlate rather poorly with the gravitational principal axes. However, the higher-degree harmonics of topography and gravity are significantly correlated. The topographic variance spectrum of Venus is very similar in form to those of the moon, Mars, and especially earth. It is suggested that this spectral similarity simply reflects a statistical balance between constructional and degradational geomorphic proceses. Venus and earth are particularly similar (and differ from the moon and Mars) in that the larger bodies both exhibit a significant low degree deficit (relative to the extrapolated trend of the higher harmonics).

  3. How Hot Can Venus Get?

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Mark A. Bullock; David H. Grinspoon

    2001-01-01

    The powerful greenhouse effect on Venus exists because pressure-broadened CO2 absorption bands, interlaced with water absorption features, effectively block most of the upwelling thermal radiation coming from the surface. The sulfuric acid clouds and small amounts of SO2, OCS, CO, HCl and HF are responsible for some absorption of radiation at wavelengths greater than 2 mu m. In particular, these

  4. Airglow and aurora in the atmospheres of Venus and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fox, J. L.

    1992-01-01

    Measurements and models of the luminosity that originates in the Martian and Venusian atmospheres, including dayglow, nightglow and aurora, are compared. Most of the emission features considered appear in the UV and visible regions of the spectrum and arise from electronic transitions of thermospheric species. Spatially and temporally variable intensities of the oxygen 1304 and 1356 A lines have been observed on the nightside of Venus and have been labeled 'auroral', that is, ascribed to electron precipitation. Only a future aeronomy mission to Mars could unequivocally determine whether such emissions are present on the nightside of Mars.

  5. On the origin of Venus' unusual gravity spectrum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rolf, Tobias; Werner, Stephanie; Steinberger, Bernhard

    2015-04-01

    Despite obvious differences in the present state of the terrestrial planets and the Earth's Moon, e.g. in their tectonic mode (plate tectonics, episodic resurfacing, stagnant lid, ...), al these bodies feature a gravity spectrum that is dominated by the spherical harmonic degree 2. The only exception is Venus, which features a degree 3-dominance and a much stronger correlation between geoid and topography at long wavelength than e.g. Earth. Taking this as motivation, we analyze Venus' gravity spectrum in more detail. We use a dynamic model to predict synthetic gravity spectra for a Venus-like planet and compare them to the observed spectrum provided from satellite missions in sufficient detail. It is known that the viscosity structure of a planetary mantle has a strong impact on the spectrum, such that we can in turn use the misfit between observed and predicted spectrum as a constraint for the viscosity profile, which also shapes the structure of mantle flow. First, we test different prescribed viscosity structures inferred from mineral physics. While the match between observed and predicted spectrum is a matter of improvement, these models reproduce Venus' strong geoid-topography correlation. Furthermore, these models support the idea of no, respectively, a small viscosity contrast between upper and lower mantle - in contrast to Earth. Second, we test self-consistently calculated viscosity structures based on an Arrhenius law, which include lateral viscosity variations. These cases lead to a stable degree 3-structure as observed, if convective vigor is sufficiently high. However, comparison of viscosity structures with and without lateral variation indicates that the long-wavelength components of the spectrum are basically insensitive to the lateral variations, which do not improve the fit between observed and predicted spectra. In order to further address this discrepancy, we test models that include a crustal layer and spatial variations in its thickness in the next step.

  6. BOOK REVIEW: June 8, 2004: Venus in Transit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maor, Eli

    2000-09-01

    A transit of Venus is a relatively rare astronomical event in which the silhouette of Venus is seen to move across the face of the Sun. The phenomenon typically lasts several hours, during which Venus is seen as a small dot against the half-degree angular diameter of the solar disc. The last transit of Venus occurred in 1882; the next will be 8 June 2004. Such transits were once of great importance in astronomy. By observing a transit simultaneously from well separated points on the Earth's surface, astronomers were able to measure, with some degree of accuracy, the crucially important separation of the Earth and the Sun. Knowing this enabled them to convert the relative spacings of the planets indicated by Kepler's laws into absolute interplanetary distances expressed in miles or kilometres. Eli Maor's book presents the general reader with a full account of Venusian transits that covers the history of their observation as well as their significance and the reasons for their rarity. The book is a light and enjoyable read that opens well with an imaginative description of observing the 2004 transit from the hills outside Jerusalem. Following an account of Kepler's prediction of a transit of Mercury in 1631 and its observation by Gassendi, the book moves on to describe the transit of Venus in 1639, giving particular emphasis to the prescient work of Jeremiah Horrocks, the extraordinary young English curate and astronomer who died just two years later at the age of 21. The story, however, really takes off with Edmond Halley's realization, in 1677, that transits of Venus might provide the key to determining distances within the solar system. The details of Halley's method are confined to an appendix, but the central chapters of the book detail the increasingly elaborate efforts that astronomers made to observe transits of Venus up to the time of the 1882 transit, when, due to the impact of new photographic methods, interest in transit observations was waning. By that time the distance to the Sun was known to be about 93 000 000 miles and observations of Mars or the asteroids seemed to offer a better prospect of improved accuracy than further observations of Venus. The story is rounded off by a chapter that describes spurious transit observations (such as that of Vulcan, a planet that was supposed to orbit closer to the Sun than Mercury) and a chapter concerning transits of the Earth seen from Mars, Jupiter and the other outer planets. Maor, who is also the author ofe: The Story of a Number, and various other books, writes clearly and well, but Venus in Transit is not uniformly interesting throughout. The early chapters are generally very good, as is the account of Captain James Cook and theEndeavour's voyage to observe the 1761 transit. But after that I felt my interest flagging somewhat, just as the astronomers of the time seemed to find their own interest diminishing. The closing chapters helped to re-engage my interest, but I did feel that the discussion of the 19th century transits was rather perfunctory and that it would have benefited from more space. Still, these are minor criticisms of a book that I am personally very glad to have read. Venus in Transit will obviously appeal most to those with an interest in astronomy, particularly in its historical aspects. But there is also much that physicists can enjoy in the book and I can easily imagine it as a useful though non-essential addition to many school and college libraries. Robert Lambourne

  7. Science questions for the Magellan continuing mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saunders, R. S.; Stofan, E. R.

    1992-01-01

    Magellan has completed two mapping cycles around the planet Venus, returning high resolution synthetic aperture images and altimetry data of over 95 percent of the planet's surface. Venus is dominated by low lying volcanic plains with an impact crater population indicating an average surface age of about 500 million years. Highland regions either tend to be characterized by volcanic shield complexes and rifting or by complex ridged terrain. Successful as the primary mission of Magellan has been, significant scientific questions remain to be addressed with imaging and gravity data that will be collected over the next several years.

  8. A Summary of the Rendezvous, Proximity Operations, Docking, and Undocking (RPODU) Lessons Learned from the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) Orbital Express (OE) Demonstration System Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dennehy, Cornelius J.; Carpenter, James R.

    2011-01-01

    The Guidance, Navigation, and Control (GN&C) Technical Discipline Team (TDT) sponsored Dr. J. Russell Carpenter, a Navigation and Rendezvous Subject Matter Expert (SME) from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), to provide support to the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) Orbital Express (OE) rendezvous and docking flight test that was conducted in 2007. When that DARPA OE mission was completed, Mr. Neil Dennehy, NASA Technical Fellow for GN&C, requested Dr. Carpenter document his findings (lessons learned) and recommendations for future rendezvous missions resulting from his OE support experience. This report captures lessons specifically from anomalies that occurred during one of OE's unmated operations.

  9. Abstracts for the venus geoscience tutorial and venus geologic mapping workshop

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-01-01

    Abstracts and tutorial are presented from the workshop. Representative titles are: Geology of Southern Guinevere Planitia, Venus, Based on Analyses of Goldstone Radar Data; Tessera Terrain: Characteristics and Models of Origin; Venus Volcanism; Rate Estimates from Laboratory Studies of Sulfur Gas-Solid Reactions; and A Morphologic Study of Venus Ridge Belts.

  10. Aeolian abrasion on Venus: Preliminary results from the Venus simulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshall, J. R.; Greeley, Ronald; Tucker, D. W.; Pollack, J. B.

    1987-01-01

    The role of atmospheric pressure on aeolian abrasion was examined in the Venus Simulator with a constant temperature of 737 K. Both the rock target and the impactor were fine-grained basalt. The impactor was a 3 mm diameter angular particle chosen to represent a size of material that is entrainable by the dense Venusian atmosphere and potentially abrasive by virtue of its mass. It was projected at the target 10 to the 5 power times at a velocity of 0.7 m/s. The impactor showed a weight loss of approximately 1.2 x 10 to the -9 power gm per impact with the attrition occurring only at the edges. Results from scanning electron microscope analysis, profilometry, and weight measurement are summarized. It is concluded that particles can incur abrasion at Venusian temperatures even with low impact velocities expected for Venus.

  11. The Pioneer Venus Orbiter Plasma Analyzer Experiment

    Microsoft Academic Search

    D. S. Intriligator; J. H. Wolfe; J. D. Mihalov

    1980-01-01

    The plasma analyzer experiment on the Pioneer Venus Orbiter was designed to determine the basic characteristics of the plasma environment of Venus and the nature of the solar wind interaction at Venus. The plasma analyzer experiment is an electrostatic energy-per-unit charge (E\\/Q) spectrometer which measures ions and electrons. There is a curved plate electrostatic analyzer system with multiple collectors. The

  12. Return to Venus of Japanese Venus Orbiter AKATSUKI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, M.; Ishii, N.; Abe, T.; Imamura, T.; Yamazaki, A.; Satoh, T.; Suzuki, M.; Ueno, M.; Ohtsuki, S.; Yamada, M.; Ogohara, K.; Uemizu, K.; Hirose, C.; Kawakatsu, Y.; Watanabe, S.; Takahashi, Y.; Iwagami, N.; Taguchi, M.

    2012-12-01

    Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter 'AKATSUKI' (PLANET-C) was successfully launched at 06:58:22JST on May 21, by H-IIA F17. The malfunction, which happened during the Venus Orbit Insertion (VOI) on 7 Dec, 2010 is as follows. Orbital maneuver engine (OME) was fired 08:49 JST on Dec. 7. 1min. after firing the spacecraft went into the occultation region and we had no telemetry, but we expected to continuous firing for 12min. Recording on the spacecraft told us later that, unfortunately the firing continued just 152sec. and stopped. The reason of the malfunction of the OME was the blocking of check valve on the gas pressure line to push the fuel to the engine. We failed to make the spacecraft the Venus orbiter, and it is rotating the sun with the orbital period of 203 days. Most of the fuel still remains, but the OME was found to be broken. We decided to use only RCS for orbit maneuver and 3 minor maneuvers in November 2012 were successfully done so that AKATSUKI will meet Venus in late 2015. We are considering several scenarios only using RCS for VOI. In the presentation we will show the possible orbits and how we put the spacecraft into those orbits. They have higher apoapsis than we expected in the initial design, but they are still westward and equatorial that is ideal to reveal the mechanism of the super-rotation of the atmosphere, and we think we will be able to achieve the scientific goals which we have been proposing.

  13. Model calculations of the dayside ionosphere of Venus - Energetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cravens, T. E.; Gombosi, T. I.; Kozyra, J.; Nagy, A. F.; Brace, L. H.; Knudsen, W. C.

    1980-12-01

    A model of the energy balance of the dayside ionosphere of Venus is presented. Calculations of the dayside electron and ion temperature profiles are carried out and compared with data from experiments on the Pioneer Venus orbiter. The coupled heat conduction equations for electrons and ions are solved for several values of the solar zenith angle. It is shown that thermal conductivities are inhibited by the presence of a horizontal magnetic field. A realistic model of the magnetic field that includes fluctuations is employed in deriving an appropriate expression for the thermal conductivity. The contributions of photoelectrons, ion chemistry, Joule heating, and solar wind heating to the energy balance of the ionosphere are considered.

  14. A migratory mantle plume on Venus: Implications for Earth?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapman, M.G.; Kirk, R.L.

    1996-01-01

    A spatially fixed or at least internally rigid hotspot reference frame has been assumed for determining relative plate motions on Earth. Recent 1:5,000,000 scale mapping of Venus, a planet without terrestrial-style plate tectonics and ocean cover, reveals a systematic age and dimensional progression of corona-like arachnoids occurring in an uncinate chain. The nonrandom associations between arachnoids indicate they likely formed from a deep-seated mantle plume in a manner similar to terrestrial hotspot features. However, absence of expected convergent "plate" margin deformation suggests that the arachnoids are the surface expression of a migratory mantle plume beneath a stationary surface. If mantle plumes are not stationary on Venus, what if any are the implications for Earth?

  15. Venus as a more Earth-like planet.

    PubMed

    Svedhem, Håkan; Titov, Dmitry V; Taylor, Fredric W; Witasse, Olivier

    2007-11-29

    Venus is Earth's near twin in mass and radius, and our nearest planetary neighbour, yet conditions there are very different in many respects. Its atmosphere, mostly composed of carbon dioxide, has a surface temperature and pressure far higher than those of Earth. Only traces of water are found, although it is likely that there was much more present in the past, possibly forming Earth-like oceans. Here we discuss how the first year of observations by Venus Express brings into focus the evolutionary paths by which the climates of two similar planets diverged from common beginnings to such extremes. These include a CO2-driven greenhouse effect, erosion of the atmosphere by solar particles and radiation, surface-atmosphere interactions, and atmospheric circulation regimes defined by differing planetary rotation rates. PMID:18046393

  16. 'You can't have a mission without a camera'

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hogan, Jenny

    2006-07-01

    A sister of the Mars Express probe has made it to Venus. And scientists have travelled to Beijing to discuss its first results. Horst Uwe Keller, who is presenting images from the craft's camera, spoke to Nature from the meeting.

  17. Venus transits - A French view

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Débarbat, Suzanne

    2005-04-01

    After a careful study of Mars observations obtained by Tycho Brahé (1546-1601), Kepler (1571-1630) discovered the now-called Kepler's third law. In 1627 he published his famous Tabulae Rudolphinae, a homage to his protector Rudolph II (1552-1612), tables (Kepler 1609, 1627) from which he predicted Mercury and Venus transits over the Sun. In 1629 Kepler published his Admonitio ad Astronomos Advertisement to Astronomers (Kepler 1630), Avertissement aux Astronomes in French Au sujet de phénomènes rares et étonnants de l'an 1631: l'incursion de Vénus et de Mercure sur le Soleil. This was the beginning of the interest of French astronomers, among many others, in such transits, mostly for Venus, the subject of this paper in which dates are given in the Gregorian calendar.

  18. Venus transits - A French view

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Suzanne Débarbat

    2005-01-01

    After a careful study of Mars observations obtained by Tycho Brahé (1546-1601), Kepler (1571-1630) discovered the now-called Kepler's third law. In 1627 he published his famous Tabulae Rudolphinae, a homage to his protector Rudolph II (1552-1612), tables (Kepler 1609, 1627) from which he predicted Mercury and Venus transits over the Sun. In 1629 Kepler published his Admonitio ad Astronomos Advertisement

  19. Characteristics of Ionospheric Magnetic Flux Ropes on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steichen, Elise; McEnulty, T. R.; Molaverdikhani, K.; Brain, D.; Zhang, T.

    2013-10-01

    Because Venus has no intrinsic magnetic field, its atmosphere is more directly exposed to the solar wind than an atmosphere of a magnetized planet such as Earth. One observed consequence of this solar wind-atmosphere interaction is the presence of magnetic flux ropes, approximately cylindrical structures consisting of twisted magnetic field lines. The central region of a flux rope contains current that can transport charged particles and may therefore aid in atmospheric escape from Venus. Flux ropes in the ionosphere are observed more often during solar maximum periods, when increased photoionization creates an ionospheric thermal pressure sufficient to exclude the solar wind magnetic field. Despite the discovery of flux ropes more than 30 years ago and the availability of new observations since the arrival of Venus Express (VEX) in 2006, the formation mechanism for ionospheric flux ropes is still unresolved. We present the results of a manual survey of magnetic field data from the VEX magnetometer (MAG) for magnetic flux ropes, which present as localized peaks in magnetic field strength with field rotations consistent with flux rope geometry. We survey data from evenly spaced month-long time intervals from 2006 - 2012 to examine the effects of different stages of the solar cycle on flux rope properties such as location, half-length, and orientation relative to the planet. We present trends in the properties of observed flux ropes, how they are affected by the solar wind, and how they compare to previous results. This research is supported by a NASA Venus Express Supporting Investigator grant.

  20. Venus topography and kilometer-scale slopes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ford, Peter G.; Pettengill, Gordon H.

    1992-01-01

    During the first 8 months of the Magellan mission, the radar altimeter has made some three million measurements of the surface of Venus covering the latitude range from 85 deg N to 80 deg S. Methods involving range correlation, Doppler filtering, multiburst summation, and range migration are used to focus the observations and to achieve high surface resolution. Results are presented as maps of the global distribution of topography, meter-scale roughness, and power reflection coefficient. The results are similar to those reported in previous experiments (surface heights exhibit a unimodal distribution with more than 80 percent of the surface lying within 1 km of the 6051.84-km mean radius) but the higher resolution of the Magellan altimeter has disclosed several surprisingly steep features, e.g., the southwest face of the Maxwell Montes, the southern face of the Danu Montes, and the chasmata to the east of Thetis Regio, where average kilometer-scale slopes of greater than 30 deg are not uncommon. This conclusion is corroborated by close inspection of synthetic aperture radar imagery.

  1. Venus Express - Status and major results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, H.; Titov, D.

    2011-10-01

    Studies of the surface in the near infrared have shown several areas of recent geologic activity. These areas correspond well to the suspected 'hot spots' previously identified in the Magellan radar and gravity field maps. Recently the atmospheric density has been probed in situ by reducing the pericentre altitude such that the drag force on the spacecraft has become significant and thus measureable. In this way the altitude range 165-200 km, which is not possible to address with remote measurements, has been characterized. For the first time a new technique has been applied whereby the solar panels are set in an asymmetric position with respect to each other such that a torque is acting on the spacecraft during the atmospheric pass. Since the spacecraft attitude is maintained automatically be the reaction wheels the rotation rate changes of the wheels provide a very sensitive measure of the atmospheric density.

  2. Compatibility issues of potential payloads for the USA/9904/B(U)F-85 RTG transportation system (RTGTS) for the 'Pluto Express' mission

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Roger G.; Barklay, Chadwick D.; Howell, Edwin I.; Frazier, Timothy A. [EG and G Mound Applied Technologies P.O. Box 3000 Miamisburg, Ohio 45343-3000 (United States); U.S. Department of Energy P.O. Box 66 Miamisburg, Ohio 45343-0066 (United States)

    1997-01-10

    The specific electric power system for the 'Pluto Express' mission has yet to be specified. However, electric power will be provided by either radioisotopic thermoelectric generators (RTG), radioisotope thermophotovoltaic systems (RTPV), alkali metal thermal to electrical conversion (AMTEC) systems, radioisotope Stirling systems, or a combination of these. The selected radioisotopic power system will also be transported using the USA/9904/B(U)F-85, Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) Transportation System (RTGTS). As a result, all of the potential payloads present uniquely different environmental and physical configuration requirements. This paper presents the major compatibility issues of the potential payloads for the USA/9904/B(U)F-85 RTG Transportation System for the 'Pluto Express' mission.

  3. Compatibility issues of potential payloads for the USA/9904/B(U)F-85 RTG transportation system (RTGTS) for the ``Pluto Express'' mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Roger G.; Barklay, Chadwick D.; Howell, Edwin I.; Frazier, Timothy A.

    1997-01-01

    The specific electric power system for the ``Pluto Express'' mission has yet to be specified. However, electric power will be provided by either radioisotopic thermoelectric generators (RTG), radioisotope thermophotovoltaic systems (RTPV), alkali metal thermal to electrical conversion (AMTEC) systems, radioisotope Stirling systems, or a combination of these. The selected radioisotopic power system will also be transported using the USA/9904/B(U)F-85, Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (RTG) Transportation System (RTGTS). As a result, all of the potential payloads present uniquely different environmental and physical configuration requirements. This paper presents the major compatibility issues of the potential payloads for the USA/9904/B(U)F-85 RTG Transportation System for the ``Pluto Express'' mission.

  4. Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) Ionosphere Evidence for Atmospheric Escape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grebowsky, J. M.; Hoegy, W. R.

    2009-12-01

    An early estimate of escape of H2O from Venus [McElroy et al., 1982] using observed hot oxygen densities inferred by Nagy et al. [1981] from PVO OUVS 1304 Å dayglow and using ionization rates from photoionization and electron impact. This resulted in an estimated oxygen ionization rate planet-wide above the plasmapause of 3x1025 atoms/s. Based on the energetic O+ being swept up and removed by solar wind, McElroy et al. [1982] gave an estimate of a loss rate for O of 6x106 atoms/cm2/s. Using a different method of estimating escape based data in the ionotail of Venus, Brace et al. [1987] estimated a total planetary O+ escape rate of 5x1025 ions/s. Their estimate was based on PVO measurements of superthermal O+ (energy range 9-16 eV) in the tail ray plasma between 2000 and 3000 km. Their estimated global mean flux was 107 atoms/cm2/s. The two escape rates are remarkably close considering all the errors involved in such estimates of escape. A study of escape by Luhmann et al. [2008] using VEX observations at low solar activity finds modest escape rates, prompting the authors to reconsider the evidence from both PVO and VEX of the possibility of enhanced escape during extreme interplanetary conditions. We reexamine the variation of escape under different solar wind conditions using ion densities and plasma content in the dayside and nightside of Venus using PVO ionosphere density during times of high solar activity. Citations: Brace, L.H., W. T. Kasprzak, H.A. Taylor, R. F. Theis, C. T. Russess, A. Barnes, J. D. Mihalov, and D. M. Hunten, "The Ionotail of Venus: Its Configuration and Evidence for Ion Escape", J. Geophys. Res. 92, 15-26, 1987. Luhmann, J.G., A. Fedorov, S. Barabash, E. Carlsson, Y. Futaana, T.L. Zhang, C.T. Russell, J.G. Lyon, S.A. Ledvina, and D.A. Brain, “Venus Express observations of atmospheric oxygen escape during the passage of several coronal mass ejections”, J. Geophys. Res., 113, 2008. McElroy, M. B., M. J. Prather, J. M. Rodiquez, " Loss of Oxygen from Venus", Geophys. Res. Lett., 9, 649-651, 1982.

  5. Venus Water Vapour Profiles Obtained by SOIR/VEx

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamberlain, Sarah; Wilquet, Valerie; Mahieux, Arnaud; Robert, Severine; Thomas, Ian; Carine Vandaele, Ann; Bertaux, Jean-Loup

    2015-04-01

    We present up-to-date observations of the water vapour profile at the Venus terminator, between altitudes of 70 - 110km. The data were obtained by the Solar Occultation in the InfraRed (SOIR) instrument on board Venus Express (VEx). The SOIR instrument allows observations of trace gas profiles at altitudes within the Venus lower thermosphere and mesosphere. Due to the observational technique, all observations are taken at the Venus terminator, on either or both of the evening and morning side of the planet and covering almost all latitudes. These are key locations for study as the mesosphere/thermosphere altitudes correspond to the transition in dynamical regime from a retrograde zonal flow to sub-solar to antisolar flow (approximately 90 km) and at these altitudes we expect a steeper than normal temperature gradient across the terminator which would drive chemical reactions and dynamical flows. Water vapour in the mesosphere is involved in the cloud formation process and contributes to several chemical cycles. Isotopologue ratio studies also contribute towards understanding the evolution of the Venus climate and atmosphere. Determining the abundance, distribution and variability of water vapour is therefore a key element to understanding the development, maintenance and links between dynamical features, important chemical cycles and the evolution of the Venus atmosphere. Both water vapour isotopologues are targeted simultaneously in the majority of dedicated SOIR water vapour observations. H2O is detected between 70 - 110km and HDO is detected between 70 - 95km altitude. Early SOIR water vapour observations were published in 2007 and 2008. Previous results show a depletion in the volume mixing ratio (VMR) at 85km in both HDO and H2O and an increase in HDO/H2O ratio above the clouds. No noticeable temporal variability was detected. Numerous subsequent H2O and HDO SOIR observations have been obtained between 2007 - 2014 and with recent improvements in instrument calibration, data reduction and a long base line of data, a new analysis has become pertinent.

  6. Novel Architecture for a Long-Life, Lightweight Venus Lander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bugby, D.; Seghi, S.; Kroliczek, E.; Pauken, M.

    2009-03-01

    This paper describes a novel concept for an extended lifetime, lightweight Venus lander. Historically, to operate in the 480° C, 90 atm, corrosive, mostly CO2 Venus surface environment, previous landers have relied on thick Ti spherical outer shells and thick layers of internal insulation. But even the most resilient of these landers operated for only about 2 hours before succumbing to the environment. The goal on this project is to develop an architecture that extends lander lifetime to 20-25 hours and also reduces mass compared to the Pioneer Venus mission architecture. The idea for reducing mass is to: (a) contain the science instruments within a spherical high strength lightweight polymer matrix composite (PMC) tank; (b) surround the PMC tank with an annular shell of high performance insulation pre-pressurized to a level that (after landing) will exceed the external Venus surface pressure; and (c) surround the insulation with a thin Ti outer shell that contains only a net internal pressure, eliminating buckling overdesign mass. The combination of the PMC inner tank and thin Ti outer shell is lighter than a single thick Ti outer shell. The idea for extending lifetime is to add the following three features: (i) an expendable water supply that is placed within the insulation or is contained in an additional vessel within the PMC tank; (ii) a thin spherical evaporator shell placed within the insulation a short radial distance from the outer shell; and (iii) a thin heat-intercepting liquid cooled shield placed inboard of the evaporator shell. These features lower the temperature of the insulation below what it would have been with the insulation alone, reducing the internal heat leak and lengthening lifetime. The use of phase change materials (PCMs) inside the PMC tank is also analyzed as a lifetime-extending design option. The paper describes: (1) analytical modeling to demonstrate reduced mass and extended life; (2) thermal conductivity testing of high performance insulation as a function of temperature and pressure; (3) a bench-top ambient pressure thermal test of the evaporation system; and (4) a higher fidelity test, to be conducted in a high pressure, high temperature inert gas test chamber, of a small-scale Venus lander prototype (made from two hemispherical interconnecting halves) that includes all of the aforesaid features. 22 CFR 125.4(b)(13) applicable

  7. Novel Architecture for a Long-Life, Lightweight Venus Lander

    SciTech Connect

    Bugby, D. [ATK Space, 5050 Powder Mill Road, Beltsville, MD 20705 (United States); Seghi, S. [Ceramic Composites, Inc., 133 Defense Hwy. 212, Annapolis, MD 21401 (United States); Kroliczek, E. [B and K Engineering, 732 Chickamauga Drive, Davidsonville, MD 21035 (United States); Pauken, M. [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena, CA 91109 301.902.4385 (United States)

    2009-03-16

    This paper describes a novel concept for an extended lifetime, lightweight Venus lander. Historically, to operate in the 480 deg. C, 90 atm, corrosive, mostly CO{sub 2} Venus surface environment, previous landers have relied on thick Ti spherical outer shells and thick layers of internal insulation. But even the most resilient of these landers operated for only about 2 hours before succumbing to the environment. The goal on this project is to develop an architecture that extends lander lifetime to 20-25 hours and also reduces mass compared to the Pioneer Venus mission architecture. The idea for reducing mass is to: (a) contain the science instruments within a spherical high strength lightweight polymer matrix composite (PMC) tank; (b) surround the PMC tank with an annular shell of high performance insulation pre-pressurized to a level that (after landing) will exceed the external Venus surface pressure; and (c) surround the insulation with a thin Ti outer shell that contains only a net internal pressure, eliminating buckling overdesign mass. The combination of the PMC inner tank and thin Ti outer shell is lighter than a single thick Ti outer shell. The idea for extending lifetime is to add the following three features: (i) an expendable water supply that is placed within the insulation or is contained in an additional vessel within the PMC tank; (ii) a thin spherical evaporator shell placed within the insulation a short radial distance from the outer shell; and (iii) a thin heat-intercepting liquid cooled shield placed inboard of the evaporator shell. These features lower the temperature of the insulation below what it would have been with the insulation alone, reducing the internal heat leak and lengthening lifetime. The use of phase change materials (PCMs) inside the PMC tank is also analyzed as a lifetime-extending design option. The paper describes: (1) analytical modeling to demonstrate reduced mass and extended life; (2) thermal conductivity testing of high performance insulation as a function of temperature and pressure; (3) a bench-top ambient pressure thermal test of the evaporation system; and (4) a higher fidelity test, to be conducted in a high pressure, high temperature inert gas test chamber, of a small-scale Venus lander prototype (made from two hemispherical interconnecting halves) that includes all of the aforesaid features.22 CFR 125.4(b)(13) applicable.

  8. V-gram. A Newsletter for Persons Interested in the Exploration of Venus, No. 8, 24 March 1986. [Magellan update

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    James, W. W.

    1986-01-01

    The status of the Magellan (MGN) Project (formerly the Venus Radar Mapper Project) is outlined and the impact of the Challenger accident on the planned mission launch date and use of residual Galileo hardware is discussed. The responsibilities and planned scientific studies of the Magellan Radar Investigation Group (RADIG) and Gravity Investigation Group (GRAVIG) are described. Team members and their affiliations are listed.

  9. A post-pioneer Venus reassessment of the Martian dayside ionosphere as observed by radio occultation methods

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, M.H.G. (Univ. of Graz (Austria)); Luhmann, J.G. (Univ. of California, Los Angeles (USA)); Kliore, A.J. (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA (USA)); Kim, J. (Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor (USA))

    1990-08-30

    The dayside altitude profiles of the electron density obtained with the radio occultation experiments on Mariners 4, 6, 7, and 9 and the Viking 1 and 2 spacecraft are collectively reanalyzed to determine the global characteristics of the dayside ionosphere of Mars. These analyses concentrate on the comparison of the properties of both the electron density peaks and the topside profiles with the behavior expected for a Chapman layer and that observed at Venus with the Pioneer Venus orbiter radio occultation experiment. As at Venus, the peak densities at Mars behave much like Chapman layer peaks with only slight departure from a (cos{theta}){sup 1/2} dependence, where {theta} is the solar zenith angle. In contrast, the peak heights depart from ideal Chapman layer behavior at Venus but not at Mars because the dayside neutral atmosphere at Venus depends on solar zenith angle. The global dust storm during the Mariner 9 main mission appears to have elevated the Martian ionosphere as a whole by {approximately}20-30 km without otherwise notably altering its density profile. These results generally corroborate the findings of earlier studies. An examination of the solar zenith angle dependence of density levels on the topsides of profiles obtained both at Mars and at Venus near solar minimum provides a new perspective on the solar zenith angle variation of the scale heights of the two ionospheres.

  10. The structure of the Venus ionosphere

    Microsoft Academic Search

    L. H. Brace; A. J. Kliore

    1991-01-01

    Our current knowledge of the spatial structure of the Venus ionosphere and its temporal behavior is reviewed, with emphasis on the more recent Pioneer Venus measurements and analysis not covered in earlier reviews. We will stress the ionosphere structure, since other papers in this issue deal with its dynamics, and its magnetic properties. We also discuss some of the limitations

  11. Topic in Depth - Transit of Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    The Transit of Venus is similar to a solar eclipse, where -- from the perspective on Earth -- Venus passes in front of the Sun. This event does not happen very often. In fact, no one alive had witnessed this phenomenon until June of 2004, and these sites detail that experience.

  12. Geology and Geophysics of Venus: Implications for Magmatic Processes

    E-print Network

    Treiman, Allan H.

    Geology and Geophysics of Venus: Implications for Magmatic Processes Walter S. Kiefer Lunar and Planetary Institute Venus Geochemistry Workshop Feb. 26, 2009 #12;#12;Basaltic Volcanism on Venus #12 decompression melting in plume head near base of lithosphere · Venus: Beta Regio, Atla Regio · Earth: Hawaii

  13. GEOCHEMICAL ASPECTS OF THE GEOLOGICAL HISTORY OF VENUS

    E-print Network

    Treiman, Allan H.

    Houston, Texas #12;GEOLOGICAL / GEOCHEMICAL DOMAINS OF VENUS: Zooming to the thinnest 1. Whole planet mantle Whole planet Earth-like model of internal structure of Venus based on similarities in massGEOCHEMICAL ASPECTS OF THE GEOLOGICAL HISTORY OF VENUS: GEOLOGICAL / GEOCHEMICAL DOMAINS OF VENUS A

  14. BOOK REVIEW: June 8, 2004: Venus in Transit

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Eli Maor

    2000-01-01

    A transit of Venus is a relatively rare astronomical event in which the silhouette of Venus is seen to move across the face of the Sun. The phenomenon typically lasts several hours, during which Venus is seen as a small dot against the half-degree angular diameter of the solar disc. The last transit of Venus occurred in 1882; the next

  15. Pinhole Effects on Venus Superpressure Balloon Lifetime

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Jeffery L.; Yavrouian, Andre H.

    2013-01-01

    Experimental results are presented for a series of experiments that addressed the effect of small pinhole defects on the potential lifetime of a Venus superpressure balloon. The experiments were performed on samples of a candidate balloon envelope material through which a single small hole of 80 to 300 microns in diameter was deliberately made in each one by puncturing with a metal pin. The material was mounted horizontally in a test apparatus and then a 2-3 mm thick layer of sulfuric acid was placed on top to mimic balloon wetting at Venus. Acid penetration and damage manifested itself as a darkening of the aluminum metal and adhesive layers around the hole in the balloon material. There were no test conditions under which the acid simply fell through the pinhole due to gravity because the surface tension forces always compensated at this size. Very little acid-damaged material was observed for the smallest 80 micron pinholes while gas flowed through the hole due to balloon-like pressurization: the black spot size was approximately 0.2 mm in diameter after 6 days with 86% sulfuric acid. The damage area grew more quickly in the absence of gas flowing out of an 80 micron hole, namely at a rate of 2 mm/day. It was concluded that the flow of escaping gas out of the hole provides a substantial reduction of the rate of acid penetration and damage. Larger diameter pinholes of approximately 300 micron diameter showed larger growth rates of 0.7 mm/day with gas flow and 1.7 mm/day without. The pinhole size did not change over the duration of these experiments because the material has an outer layer of fluoropolymer film that remained intact during the process and thereby held the hole size constant. None of the damage rates measured in these experiments pose a threat to the lifetime of the balloon over the projected course of a 30 day mission because the affected area is too small to cause a structural failure either through direct damage or increased solar heating and attendant balloon pressurization leading to burst.

  16. International shipment of light weight radioisotopic heater units (LWRHU) using the USA/9516/B(U)F Mound 1 kW shipping package in support of the 'Pluto Express' mission

    SciTech Connect

    Barklay, Chadwick D.; Merten, C. William [EG and G Mound Applied Technologies P.O. Box 3000 Miamisburg, Ohio 45343-3000 (United States); Mound Engineering and Analysis Group, Inc. 720 Mound Road COS Building 4222 Miamisburg, Ohio 45342 (United States)

    1997-01-10

    Radioisotopes have provided heat that has been used to maintain specific operating environments within remote satellites and spacecraft. For the 'Pluto Express' mission the {sup 238}PuO{sub 2} fueled light weight radioisotopic heater unit (LWRHU) will be used within the spacecraft. Since the current plan for the 'Pluto Express' mission incorporates the use of a Russian launch platform for the spacecraft, the LWRHUs must be transported in an internationally certified shipping container. An internationally certified shipping package that is versatile enough to be reconfigured to transport the LWRHUs that will be required to support the 'Pluto Express' mission is the Mound USA/9516/B(U)F.

  17. Magma vesiculation and pyroclastic volcanism on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garvin, J. B.; Head, J. W.; Wilson, L.

    1982-01-01

    Theoretical consideration of the magma vesiculation process under observed and inferred venusian surface conditions suggests that vesicles should form in basaltic melts, especially if CO2 is the primary magmatic volatile. However, the high surface atmospheric pressure (about 90 bars) and density on Venus retard bubble coalescence and disruption sufficiently to make explosive volcanism unlikely. The products of explosive volcanism (fire fountains, convecting eruption clouds, pyroclastic flows, and topography-mantling deposits of ash, spatter, and scoria) should be rare on Venus, and effusive eruptions should dominate. The volume fraction of vesicles in basaltic rocks on Venus are predicted to be less than in chemically similar rocks on earth. Detection of pyroclastic landforms or eruption products on Venus would indicate either abnormally high volatile contents of Venus magmas (2.5-4 wt%) or different environmental conditions (e.g., lower atmospheric pressure) in previous geologic history.

  18. Exploring the veiled planet. [Venus observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1980-01-01

    An overview of data obtained from various experiments which characterize geological features and atmospheric properties of Venus is presented. Data from the two Pioneer sounder probes (one located at Venus's equator and the other near the north pole) exhibit a reversal in the equator-to-pole temperature patterns at 60 km altitude which suggests that two circulation cells exist within the atmospheric region. However, the atmospheric temperature and pressure beneath the clouds are found to be nearly identical everywhere on Venus and both temperature and pressure conditions at the surface are lower than first expected. The identification of sulphur dioxide clouds which appear to coincide with Venus's characteristic global patterns of C- and Y-shaped dark markings support the hypothesis of a regular pattern of planet spanning breaks in the upper cloud layer. Explanations of a Venus sulphur cycle and of observed magnetic field structures are suggested

  19. Classification of Circular Features on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stofan, E. R.; Head, J. W.; Grieve, R. A. F.

    1985-01-01

    Among the unanswered questions concerning Venus are the age of its surface and the mechanisms of lithospheric heat transfer (conduction, plate recycling, and hot spot volcanism). If there is a large population of impact craters, then the surface is ancient and Venus is characterized by conduction like the Moon, and Mercury, rather than plate recycling and hot spot volcanism. Alternatively, if there is a large population of volcanic craters, then the surface is younger and other mechanisms of heat transfer likely dominate. Previous studies have emphasized various aspects of the observational, theoretical, experimental, and comparative planetological studies of cratering on Venus, and several have reached divergent opinions concerning the age of the Venus surface. A major source of uncertainty in previous studies is the possible inclusion of circular features of nonimpact (volcanic or tectonic) origin in the so called impact crater population. A classification scheme of circular features on Venus is developed in order to further distinguish their origin and distribution.

  20. The interior of Venus and Tectonic implications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, R. J.; Malin, M. C.

    1983-01-01

    It is noted in the present consideration of the Venus lithosphere and its implications for plate tectonics that the major linear elevated regions of Venus, which are associated with Beta Regio and Aphrodite Terra, do not seem to have the shape required for sure interpretation as the divergent plate boundaries of seafloor spreading. Such tectonics instead appear to be confined to the median plains, and may not be resolvable in the Pioneer Venus altimetry data. The ratios of gravity anomalies to topographic heights indicate that surface load compensation occurs at depths greater than about 100 km under the western Aphrodite Terra and 400 km under Beta Regio, with at least some of this compensation probably being maintained by mantle convection. It is also found that the shape of Venus's hypsogram is very different from the ocean mode of the earth's hypsogram, and it is proposed that Venus tectonics resemble intraplate, basin-and-swell tectonics on earth.

  1. The loss of ions from Venus through the plasma wake.

    PubMed

    Barabash, S; Fedorov, A; Sauvaud, J J; Lundin, R; Russell, C T; Futaana, Y; Zhang, T L; Andersson, H; Brinkfeldt, K; Grigoriev, A; Holmström, M; Yamauchi, M; Asamura, K; Baumjohann, W; Lammer, H; Coates, A J; Kataria, D O; Linder, D R; Curtis, C C; Hsieh, K C; Sandel, B R; Grande, M; Gunell, H; Koskinen, H E J; Kallio, E; Riihelä, P; Säles, T; Schmidt, W; Kozyra, J; Krupp, N; Fränz, M; Woch, J; Luhmann, J; McKenna-Lawlor, S; Mazelle, C; Thocaven, J-J; Orsini, S; Cerulli-Irelli, R; Mura, M; Milillo, M; Maggi, M; Roelof, E; Brandt, P; Szego, K; Winningham, J D; Frahm, R A; Scherrer, J; Sharber, J R; Wurz, P; Bochsler, P

    2007-11-29

    Venus, unlike Earth, is an extremely dry planet although both began with similar masses, distances from the Sun, and presumably water inventories. The high deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio in the venusian atmosphere relative to Earth's also indicates that the atmosphere has undergone significantly different evolution over the age of the Solar System. Present-day thermal escape is low for all atmospheric species. However, hydrogen can escape by means of collisions with hot atoms from ionospheric photochemistry, and although the bulk of O and O2 are gravitationally bound, heavy ions have been observed to escape through interaction with the solar wind. Nevertheless, their relative rates of escape, spatial distribution, and composition could not be determined from these previous measurements. Here we report Venus Express measurements showing that the dominant escaping ions are O+, He+ and H+. The escaping ions leave Venus through the plasma sheet (a central portion of the plasma wake) and in a boundary layer of the induced magnetosphere. The escape rate ratios are Q(H+)/Q(O+) = 1.9; Q(He+)/Q(O+) = 0.07. The first of these implies that the escape of H+ and O+, together with the estimated escape of neutral hydrogen and oxygen, currently takes place near the stoichometric ratio corresponding to water. PMID:18046398

  2. Geologic Map of the Sif Mons Quadrangle (V-31), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Copp, Duncan L.; Guest, John E.

    2007-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft orbited Venus from August 10, 1990, until it plunged into the Venusian atmosphere on October 12, 1994. Magellan Mission objectives included (1) improving the knowledge of the geological processes, surface properties, and geologic history of Venus by analysis of surface radar characteristics, topography, and morphology and (2) improving the knowledge of the geophysics of Venus by analysis of Venusian gravity. The Sif Mons quadrangle of Venus includes lat 0? to 25? N. and long 330? to 0? E.; it covers an area of about 8.10 x 106 km2 (fig. 1). The data used to construct the geologic map were from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Magellan Mission. The area is also covered by Arecibo images, which were also consulted (Campbell and Campbell, 1990; Campbell and others, 1989). Data from the Soviet Venera orbiters do not cover this area. All of the SAR products were employed for geologic mapping. C1-MIDRs were used for general recognition of units and structures; F-MIDRs and F-MAPs were used for more specific examination of surface characteristics and structures. Where the highest resolution was required or some image processing was necessary to solve a particular mapping problem, the images were examined using the digital data on CD-ROMs. In cycle 1, the SAR incidence angles for images obtained for the Sif Mons quadrangle ranged from 44? to 46?; in cycle 3, they were between 25? and 26?. We use the term 'high backscatter' of a material unit to imply a rough surface texture at the wavelength scale used by Magellan SAR. Conversely, 'low backscatter' implies a smooth surface. In addition, altimetric, radiometric, and rms slope data were superposed on SAR images. Figure 2 shows altimetry data; figure 3 shows images of ancillary data for the quadrangle; and figure 4 shows backscatter coefficient for selected units. The interpretation of these data was discussed by Ford and others (1989, 1993). For corrected backscatter and numerical ancillary data see tables 1 and 2; these data allow comparison with units at different latitudes on the planet, where the visual appearance may differ because of a different incidence angle. Synthetic stereo images, produced by overlaying SAR images and altimetric data, were of great value in interpreting structures and stratigraphic relations.

  3. System design of the Pioneer Venus spacecraft. Volume 9: Attitude control/mechanisms subsystems studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Neil, A. L.

    1973-01-01

    The Pioneer Venus mission study was conducted for a probe spacecraft and an orbiter spacecraft to be launched by either a Thor/Delta or an Atlas/Centaur launch vehicle. Both spacecraft are spin stabilized. The spin speed is controlled by ground commands to as low as 5 rpm for science instrument scanning on the orbiter and as high as 71 rpm for small probes released from the probe bus. A major objective in the design of the attitude control and mechanism subsystem (ACMS) was to provide, in the interest of costs, maximum commonality of the elements between the probe bus and orbiter spacecraft configurations. This design study was made considering the use of either launch vehicle. The basic functional requirements of the ACMS are derived from spin axis pointing and spin speed control requirements implicit in the acquisition, cruise, encounter and orbital phases of the Pioneer Venus missions.

  4. Comparing the plasma environments of Venus, Mars and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edberg, Niklas J. T.; Andrews, David. J.; Luhmann, Janet. G.; Opgenoorth, Hermann. J.; Shebanits, Oleg; Vigren, Erik; Wahlund, Jan-Erik

    2015-04-01

    The Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO), the Mars Express (MEX) and the Cassini spacecraft have performed measurements of the Venus, Mars and Titan plasma environments, respectively, for approximately a full solar cycle in each case. We use data taken by instruments capable of measuring thermal plasma densities (OETP, MARSIS, RPWS/LP, respectively) carried by these spacecraft to perform a comparative study of the global plasma environments of these three celestial bodies. The main ionization source of each upper atmosphere is photoionization, while other, secondary, factors control the structure of each plasma environment. The bodies have in common that their respective ionospheres are strongly controlled by the solar zenith angle in the sense that the plasma density drops with raising solar zenith angle. Their ionospheres are also controlled by the phase of the solar cycle. However, there are significant differences between the three ionospheres. For instance, the structure of Venus upper atmosphere is strongly affected by the solar wind dynamic pressure, like the other bodies too, but at Venus this can compress the plasma environment and control if the ionosphere is magnetized or unmagnetized. Mars' plasma environment is affected by its strong crustal magnetic fields and it has been shown that the crustal fields affect both the electron density above as well as the location of global plasma boundaries (magnetic pile-up boundary and bow shock) surrounding the planet. Titan's plasma environment is controlled by a complex organic chemistry in the neutral atmosphere and ionosphere but is also affected by the phase of Titan's orbit around Saturn and the dynamics of Saturn's magnetosphere.

  5. Geologic Map of the Niobe Planitia Quadrangle (V-23), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hansen, Vicki L.

    2009-01-01

    The Niobe Planitia quadrangle (V-23) encompasses approximately 8,000,000 km2 of the Venusian equatorial region extending from lat 0 deg to 25 deg N. and from long 90 deg to 120 deg E. (approximately 9,500 15-minute quadrangles on Earth). The map area lies along the north margin of the equatorial highland, Aphrodite Terra (V-35), and extends into the lowland region to the north, preserving a transition from southern highlands to northern lowlands (figs. 1, 2, map sheet). The northern parts of the crustal plateau, Ovda Regio and Haasttse-baad Tessera, mark the south margin of the map area; Niobe and Sogolon Planitiae make up the lowland region. The division between Niobe and Sogolon Planitiae is generally topographic, and Sogolon Planitia forms a relatively small elongate basin. Mesolands, the intermediate topographic level of Venus, are essentially absent or represented only by Gegute Tessera, which forms a slightly elevated region that separates Niobe Planitia from Llorona Planitia to the east (V-24). Lowlands within the map area host five features currently classified as coronae: Maya Corona (lat 23 deg N., long 97 deg E.) resides to the northwest and Dhisana, Allatu, Omeciuatl, and Bhumiya Coronae cluster loosely in the east-central area. Lowlands extend north, east, and west of the map area. Mapping the Niobe Planitia quadrangle (V-23) provides an excellent opportunity to examine a large tract of lowlands and the adjacent highlands with the express goal of clarifying the processes responsible for resurfacing this part of Venus and the resulting implications for Venus evolution. Although Venus lowlands are widely considered to have a volcanic origin, lowlands in the map area lack adjacent coronae or other obvious volcanic sources.

  6. Student directions First, let's compare the spectra of Venus and Earth. The spectrum of Venus was taken from

    E-print Network

    Mojzsis, Stephen J.

    Part 1 First, let's compare the spectra of Venus and Earth. The spectrum of Venus was taken from in the spectra with known elements on the following page. Be sure to look at the scale very carefully. Venus substances are definitely present in both Earth and Venus' spectra? 2. Which substances are definitely

  7. Topographic Comparisons of Uplift Features on Venus and Earth: Implications for Venus Tectonics. P. R. and D. M. Jurdy2

    E-print Network

    Jurdy, Donna M.

    Topographic Comparisons of Uplift Features on Venus and Earth: Implications for Venus Tectonics. P, Northwestern Univer- sity, Evansont, IL 60208-2150 (donna@earth.northwestern.edu) Introduction: Earth and Venus have many similar features, yet their tectonic histories are quite different. Like the Earth, Venus has

  8. Analysis of low frequency whistler wave occurrences in the night-side Venus ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, Harold Glenn

    This body of work deals with a detailed analysis of plasma, magnetic, and electric field data from Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) to determine if the data are consistent with the possibility of lightning on Venus. This has been a strong topic of debate in the planetary physics community. In a recent Nature article [Ingersoll, 2007], Ingersoll provides a synopsis of the case against lightning on Venus. He states that there should not be lightning on Venus, whose clouds, at roughly 55-60km above the surface, are like terrestrial smog clouds, which do not produce lightning. Ingersoll then goes on to recount that no visible evidence (flashes) has been detected on the night or day-side of Venus. An article published by Gurnett [ Gurnett, et al., 2001] details the non-detection of high frequency radio waves characteristic of terrestrial lightning (0.125 to 16MHz) during Cassini's two fly-bys of Venus, contrasted with the definite detection of RF waves during Cassini's later earth fly-by. However, the detection of low frequency whistler waves by Venus Express has revived claims that the source of these whistler waves is lightning in the lower atmosphere of Venus [ Russell, et al., 2007]. Numerous other papers have been published on different aspects of the debate, such as a paper addressing telemetry interference being incorrectly interpreted as evidence for lightning [Taylor, et al., 1988], another paper suggesting the detected events are a local phenomenon [Taylor, et al., 1983], and a paper documenting some of the optical searches for Venusian lightning [Taylor, et al. , 1994]. This work is a comprehensive reconsideration of 14 years of PVO plasma data on a season by season basis, as the spacecraft goes to low altitudes on the night-side of Venus. In this effort, intelligent software filters have been developed to find, sort, and analyze the frequency of occurrence of low frequency whistler waves. The results of this investigation show that the source cannot be in the lower atmosphere of Venus, since at the lowest altitudes (140-156km), the signals disappear. Therefore, an ionospheric source for these whistler waves must be considered.

  9. Venus' thermospheric temperature field using a refraction model at terminator : comparison with 2012 transit observations using SDO/HMI, VEx/SPICAV/SOIR and NSO/DST/FIRS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widemann, Thomas; Jaeggli, Sarah; Reardon, Kevin; Tanga, Paolo; Père, Christophe; Pasachoff, Jay M.; Vandaele, Ann Carine; Wilquet, Valerie; Mahieux, Arnaud; Wilson, Colin

    2014-11-01

    The transit of Venus in June 2012 provided a unique case study of the Venus' atmosphere transiting in front of the Sun, while at the same time ESA's Venus Express orbiter observed the evening terminator at solar ingress and solar egress.We report on mesospheric temperature at Venus' morning terminator using SDO/HMI aureole photometry and comparison with Venus Express. Close to ingress and egress phases, we have shown that the aureole photometry reflects the local density scale height and the altitude of the refracting layer (Tanga et al. 2012). The lightcurve of each spatially resolved aureole element is fit to a two-parameter model to constrain the meridional temperature gradient at terminator. Our measurements are in agreement with the VEx/SOIR temperatures obtained during orbit 2238 at evening terminator during solar ingress (46.75N - LST = 6.075PM) and solar egress (31.30N - LST = 6.047PM) captured from the Venus Express orbiter at the time Venus transited the Sun.We also performed spectroscopy and polarimetry during the transit of Venus focusing on extracting signatures of CO2 absorption. Observations were taken during the first half of the transit using the Facility InfraRed Spectropolarimeter (FIRS) on the Dunn Solar Telescope (DST). Although the predicted CO2 transmission spectrum of Venus was not particularly strong at 1565 nm, this region of the H-band often used in magnetic field studies of the Sun's photosphere provides a particularly flat solar continuum with few atmospheric lines. Sun-subtracted Venus limb observations show intensity distribution of vibrational CO2 bands 221 2v+2v2+v3 at 1.571?m and 141 v1+4v2+v3 at 1.606?m.

  10. The geologic mapping of Venus using C-1 format: Sheets 75N254, 60N263

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shalimov, I. V.

    1992-01-01

    The results of geologic mapping of Venus, produced on the base of Magellan images, are presented. We submit two C-1 format geologic maps with the appropriate legend. The mapping territory was taken from Venera 15 and 16 missions and geologic maps were composed. Magellan images allow us to divide some types of the plains units to determine the lava flow direction and to map with better accuracy.

  11. Imaging and mapping the circumsolar dust ring near the orbit of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, M.; Bewsher, D.; Brown, D.

    2014-07-01

    Asteroids and comets are the dominant source of dust feeding the zodiacal cloud [1,2]. The orbits of grains of size 10--100 microns are expected to decay by Poynting-Robertson drag [3], but in the vicinity of planetary orbits dust may get trapped into exterior mean motion resonances [4] to form a circumsolar dust ring. It has long been known that such a ring exists close to the Earth's orbit [5], but even now, little is known about its detailed structure. No such ring or associated resonance feature has been detected at the orbits of Mars or Jupiter [6]. While re-analysis of photometry data from the Helios mission provided some evidence of a ring associated with Venus [7], the existence of such a ring could not be conclusively demonstrated. Here we report on recent work that confirms the existence of a circumsolar ring at Venus from sensitive optical photometry of the zodiacal cloud [8]. Our analysis uses synoptic images from the HI-2 instrument on STEREO [9]. We discuss the techniques that we have developed to extract images of the Venus ring, and describe the approach taken towards creating a simple parametric model of the ring. We note that the maximum over-density in the ring is about 10% that of the smooth zodiacal cloud, and we highlight other aspects of the ring structure that we have already determined. We demonstrate that the STEREO HI-2 data allow the density structure of the Venus ring to be mapped in much greater detail than the Earth ring. Thus the Venus ring has the potential to provide a stringent test of models of resonance ring formation. Not only is this relevant to understanding the structure of the zodiacal cloud, it is of importance in the context of exoplanetary systems which are also expected to display analogous circumstellar dust rings [10,11]. We conclude by discussing current progress in mapping the density distribution of the Venus circumsolar ring.

  12. William Crabtree's Venus transit observation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kollerstrom, Nicholas

    2005-04-01

    The close collaboration between the two North-country astronomers Jeremiah Horrocks and William Crabtree gave them special insight into the new astronomy published by the recently-deceased Kepler, whereby Horrocks became the only person to apprehend that the Rudolphine tables were in fact predicting a Venus transit in 1639. This paper focuses especially upon William Crabtree's role and contribution. A comparison is made with an earlier, unsuccessful endeavour by these two concerning a possible transit of Mercury. Much of the record of their work was lost during the civil war. Finally, thanks to Christiaan Huygens, Horrock's manuscript was published by Johannes Hevelius in Danzig, in 1662.

  13. Mars and Venus: unequal planets.

    PubMed

    Zimmerman, T S; Haddock, S A; McGeorge, C R

    2001-01-01

    Self-help books, a pervasive and influential aspect of society, can have a beneficial or detrimental effect on the therapeutic process. This article describes a thematic analysis and feminist critique of the best-selling self-help book, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. This analysis revealed that the author's materials are inconsistent with significant family therapy research findings and key principles of feminist theories. His descriptions of each gender and his recommendations for improving relationships serve to endorse and encourage power differentials between women and men. PMID:11215990

  14. The thermal regime of Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Solomatov, V.S.; Zharkov, V.N. (Institut Fiziki Zemli, Moscow (USSR))

    1990-04-01

    In the present numerical modeling study of the thermal evolution of Venus, the mantle is taken to be composed of independently convecting upper and lower mantles. A novel parameterization is used which takes into account recent numerical investigations in media with complex rheology. The parameters of the convecting planet in the asymptotic regime do not depend on initial conditions, and are ascertained analytically. Convection in the lower part of the crust is demonstrated to be involved in regions having specific crustal composition; heat transfer to the surface is primarily via advection by magmas that are produced by melting of the lower layers of the crust. 50 refs.

  15. Characterization of a transiting exo-Venus : lessons from the 2012 Transit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widemann, Thomas; Jaeggli, S. A.; Reardon, K. P.; Tanga, P.; Pasachoff, J. M.; Schneider, G.

    2013-10-01

    The transit of Venus in June 2012 provided a unique chance to view a well studied planetary atmosphere as we might see that of a transiting exoplanet, through scattered and refracted illumination of its parent star. We report on mesospheric temperature at Venus' morning terminator using SDO/HMI aureole photometry and comparison with Venus Express. Close to ingress and egress phases, we have shown that the aureole photometry reflects the local density scale height and the altitude of the refracting layer (Tanga et al. 2012). The lightcurve of each spatial resolution element of the aureole is compared to a two-parameter model to constrain the meridional temperature gradient along the terminator. Our measurements are in agreement with the VEx/SOIR temperatures obtained during orbit 2238 at evening terminator during solar ingress (46.75N - LST = 6.075PM) and solar egress (31.30N - LST = 6.047PM) as seen from the orbiter. Imaging data using IBIS/ROSA on the Dunn Solar Telescope in the G-band (430 nm) are also presented. We also performed spectroscopy and polarimetry during the transit of Venus focusing on extracting signatures of CO2 absorption. Observations were taken during the first half of the transit using the Facility InfraRed Spectropolarimeter on the Dunn Solar Telescope. Although the predicted CO2 transmission spectrum of Venus was not particularly strong at 1565 nm, this region of the H-band often used in magnetic field studies of the Sun's photosphere provides a particularly flat solar continuum with few atmospheric and molecular lines. Sun-subtracted Venus limb observations show intensity distribution of vibro-rotational CO2 band 221 2? + 2?2 + ?3 at 1.571?m allowing for an additional constraint on Venus' thermospheric temperature.

  16. Geologic map of the Lakshmi Planum quadrangle (V-7), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ivanov, Mikhail A.; Head, James W., III

    2010-01-01

    The Lakshmi Planum quadrangle is in the northern hemisphere of Venus and extends from lat 50 degrees to 75 degrees N., and from long 300 degrees to 360 degrees E. The elevated volcanic plateau of Lakshmi Planum, which represents a very specific and unique class of highlands on Venus, dominates the northern half of the quadrangle. The surface of the planum stands 3-4 km above mean planetary radius and the plateau is surrounded by the highest Venusian mountain ranges, 7-10 km high. Before the Magellan mission, the geology of the Lakshmi Planum quadrangle was known on the basis of topographic data acquired by the Pioneer-Venus and Venera-15/16 altimeter and radar images received by the Arecibo telescope and Venera-15/16 spacecraft. These data showed unique topographic and morphologic structures of the mountain belts, which have no counterparts elsewhere on Venus, and the interior volcanic plateau with two large and low volcanic centers and large blocks of tessera-like terrain. From the outside, Lakshmi Planum is outlined by a zone of complexly deformed terrains that occur on the regional outer slope of Lakshmi. Vast low-lying plains surround this zone. After acquisition of the Venera-15/16 data, two classes of hypotheses were formulated to explain the unique structure of Lakshmi Planum and its surrounding. The first proposed that the western portion of Ishtar Terra, dominated by Lakshmi Planum, was a site of large-scale upwelling while the alternative hypothesis considered this region as a site of large-scale downwelling and underthrusting. Early Magellan results showed important details of the general geology of this area displayed in the Venera-15/16 images. Swarms of extensional structures and massifs of tesserae populate the southern slope of Lakshmi. The zone of fractures and grabens form a giant arc thousands of kilometers long and hundreds of kilometers wide around the southern flank of Lakshmi Planum. From the north, the deformational zones consist mostly of contractional structures such as ridges. Corona and corona-like structures are not typical features of this zone but occur within separate branches of extensional structures oriented radial to the edge of Lakshmi. The southeastern edge of Lakshmi appears to be the source of large volcanic flows that extend to the south toward the lowland areas of Sedna Planitia. Colette and Sacajawea Paterae in the interior of Lakshmi are low volcanic centers with very deep central depressions. Lava flows sourced by Colette and Sacajawea form distinctive radial patterns around these volcanoes. Magellan gravity data show that the northern and northeastern portions of the quadrangle, which correspond to Lakshmi Planum, represent a significant geoid anomaly with the peak value of about 90 m over Maxwell Montes at the eastern edge of the map area. Maxwell is characterized also by very high vertical gravity acceleration values (as much as 268 mGal). The lowland of Sedna Planitia to the south of Lakshmi has mostly negative geoid values (down to -40 m). The key geological structure of the quadrangle is Lakshmi Planum, the mode of formation of which is still a major unresolved problem. The topographic configuration, gravity signature, and pattern of deformation inside Lakshmi and along its boundaries make this feature unique on Venus. Thus, geological mapping of this region allows addressing several important questions that should help to put some constraints on the existing models of Lakshmi formation. What is the sequence of events in the formation and evolution of such a unique morphologic and topographic feature? What are the characteristics of the marginal areas of Lakshmi: the compact mountain belts and broad zones of deformation in the transition zone between Lakshmi and surrounding lowlands? How do the units in Lakshmi Planum quadrangle compare with the units mapped in neighboring and distant regions of Venus and what information do they provide concerning models for Venus

  17. Systems design study of the Pioneer Venus spacecraft. Volume 1. Technical analyses and tradeoffs, sections 1-4 (part 1 of 4)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    The results are reported of the Pioneer Venus studies from 2 October 1972 through 30 June 1973. Many missions were considered, involving two launch vehicles (Thor/Delta and Atlas/Centaur), and different launch opportunities and spacecraft configurations to meet varying science requirements, all at minimum cost. The sequence of events is described and the specific studies conducted are summarized. The effects of science payload on mission and spacecraft design are discussed along with the mission analyses.

  18. Venus high temperature atmospheric dropsonde and extreme-environment seismometer (HADES)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boll, Nathan J.; Salazar, Denise; Stelter, Christopher J.; Landis, Geoffrey A.; Colozza, Anthony J.

    2015-06-01

    The atmospheric composition and geologic structure of Venus have been identified by the US National Research Council's Decadal Survey for Planetary Science as priority targets for scientific exploration; however, the high temperature and pressure at the surface, along with the highly corrosive chemistry of the Venus atmosphere, present significant obstacles to spacecraft design that have severely limited past and proposed landed missions. Following the methodology of the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) proposal regime and the Collaborative Modeling and Parametric Assessment of Space Systems (COMPASS) design protocol, this paper presents a conceptual study and initial feasibility analysis for a Discovery-class Venus lander capable of an extended-duration mission at ambient temperature and pressure, incorporating emerging technologies within the field of high temperature electronics in combination with novel configurations of proven, high Technology Readiness Level (TRL) systems. Radioisotope Thermal Power (RTG) systems and silicon carbide (SiC) communications and data handling are examined in detail, and various high-temperature instruments are proposed, including a seismometer and an advanced photodiode imager. The study combines this technological analysis with proposals for a descent instrument package and a relay orbiter to demonstrate the viability of an integrated atmospheric and in-situ geologic exploratory mission that differs from previous proposals by greatly reducing the mass, power requirements, and cost, while achieving important scientific goals.

  19. Venus High Temperature Atmospheric Dropsonde and Extreme-Environment Seismometer (HADES)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boll, Nathan J.; Salazar, Denise; Stelter, Christopher J.; Landis, Geoffrey A.; Colozza, Anthony J.

    2014-01-01

    The atmospheric composition and geologic structure of Venus have been identified by the US National Research Council's Decadal Survey for Planetary Science as priority targets for scientific exploration, however the high temperature and pressure at the surface, along with the highly corrosive chemistry of the Venus atmosphere, present significant obstacles to spacecraft design that have severely limited past and proposed landed missions. Following the methodology of the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) proposal regime and the Collaborative Modeling and Parametric Assessment of Space Systems (COMPASS) design protocol, this paper presents a conceptual study and initial feasibility analysis for a Discovery-class Venus lander capable of an extended-duration mission at ambient temperature and pressure, incorporating emerging technologies within the field of high temperature electronics in combination with novel configurations of proven, high Technology Readiness Level (TRL) systems. Radioisotope Thermal Power (RTG) systems and silicon carbide (SiC) communications and data handling are examined in detail, and various high-temperature instruments are proposed, including a seismometer and an advanced photodiode imager. The study combines this technological analysis with proposals for a descent instrument package and a relay orbiter to demonstrate the viability of an integrated atmospheric and in-situ geologic exploratory mission that differs from previous proposals by greatly reducing the mass, power requirements, and cost, while achieving important scientific goals.

  20. Quantitative tests for plate tectonics on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaula, W. M.; Phillips, R. J.

    1981-01-01

    Quantitative comparisons are made between the characteristics of plate tectonics on the earth and those which are possible on Venus. Considerations of the factors influencing rise height and relating the decrease in rise height to plate velocity indicate that the rate of topographic dropoff from spreading centers should be about half that on earth due to greater rock-fluid density contrast and lower temperature differential between the surface and interior. Statistical analyses of Pioneer Venus radar altimetry data and global earth elevation data is used to identify 21,000 km of ridge on Venus and 33,000 km on earth, and reveal Venus ridges to have a less well-defined mode in crest heights and a greater concavity than earth ridges. Comparison of the Venus results with the spreading rates and associated heat flow on earth reveals plate creation rates on Venus to be 0.7 sq km/year or less and indicates that not more than 15% of Venus's energy is delivered to the surface by plate tectonics, in contrast to values of 2.9 sq km a year and 70% for earth.

  1. Evolution of large shield volcanoes on Venus Robert R. Herrick1

    E-print Network

    Herrick, Robert R.

    Evolution of large shield volcanoes on Venus Robert R. Herrick1 Lunar and Planetary Institute history, topographic expression, and gravity signature of 29 large Venusian shield volcanoes with similar domical volcano. The depressions all have some later volcanic filling. All but one of the central

  2. Initiation of Run-Out Flows on Venus by Oblique Impacts

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Seiji Sugita; Peter H. Schultz

    2002-01-01

    A hypervelocity oblique impact results in a downrange-moving vapor cloud, a significant fraction of which is derived from the projectile. Since the vapor cloud expands to great extent and becomes very tenuous quickly on a planet with a thin or no atmosphere, it does not leave a well-defined geologic expression. The thick atmosphere of Venus, however, is sufficient to contain

  3. The 3 Final States of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Correia, A. C. M.; Laskar, J.

    2000-10-01

    In 1962, using radar measurements, the slow retrograde rotation of Venus was discovered (see Carpenter, 1970). Since, the understanding of this particular state becomes a challenge as many uncertainties remain in the dissipative models of Venus' rotation. Various hypothesis were proposed for its evolution, aiming to search wether Venus was born with a direct or retrograde rotation. The most favored scenario assumes that its axis was actually tilted down during its past evolution as a result of core mantle friction and atmospheric tides (Lago and Cazenave, 1979, Dobrovolski, 1980, Shen and Zhang, 1989, McCue and Dormand, 1993, Yoder, 1995, 1997). Nevertheless, this requires high values of the initial obliquity, and it was proposed that Venus was strongly hit by massive bodies which would have tilted it significantly or started its rotation backward (Dones and Tremaine, 1993). Even while considering the chaotic evolution of Venus's obliquity (Laskar and Robutel, 1993), the published scenarios still have some difficulties to tilt Venus axis towards its present position (Yoder,1997). In the present work we show that due to the dissipative effects, there are only 4 possible final states for Venus' rotation, and only 3 of them are really reachable. When the planetary perturbations are added, most of the initial conditions lead to the two states corresponding to the present configuration of Venus, one with period -243.02 days and nearly 0o obliquity, and the other with opposite period and nearly 180o obliquity.We thus demonstrate that a large impact is not necessary to have a satisfying scenario for the reverse rotation of Venus.

  4. A Case Study of the Impact of a Transient Solar Wind Structure on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collinson, G.; Grebowsky, J. M.; Sibeck, D. G.; Boardsen, S. A.; Zhang, T.; Coates, A. J.; Barabash, S.

    2014-12-01

    With no magnetic field for protection, Venus' induced magnetosphere and ionosphere are very sensitive to solar wind drivers. We present data from the ESA Venus Express of an encounter with a large (~0.17AU) solar wind structure which created significantly enhanced solar wind density and interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) strength, the main component of which was an abnormal ~20nT radial component. This structure fortuitously reached its peak when our spacecraft was close to periapsis, permitting the study of the global consequences of this Solar Wind transient event. We show the dramatic effects on the foreshock, foreshock, sheath, ionosphere, and wake, and the enhanced stripping of the atmosphere.

  5. The chemistry of Venus' atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sze, N. D.; Smith, W. H.

    1978-01-01

    A model for the Venus atmosphere involving photochemistry of oxygen, hydrogen, chlorine and sulfur species is presented. Sulfur reaction schemes and hydrogen and chlorine reaction schemes were included. The impact of sulfur on the oxygen budget and the subsequent production of H2SO4 molecules for the Venus cloud deck were explored. A major new reaction scheme for production of H2SO4 molecules involving sulfur and oxygen chemistry was established shown to dominate over the odd hydrogen scheme proposed earlier. The efficiency of the scheme in formation of H2SO4 is only about 50%, with the remaining sulfur residing in SO2 molecules. The calculated downward flux of H2SO4 may be sufficient to maintain a steady state sulfuric acid cloud if the resident time of H2SO4 droplets in the cloud is as long as a few years. If however, the resident time is half a year or shorter, additional chemistry capable of more efficient conversion of SO2 to SO3 is required.

  6. Dynamics of the Venus atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingersoll, A. P.

    1992-01-01

    The superrotation of the Venus atmosphere is a major unanswered problem in planetary science. At cloud-top levels (65-70 km altitude) the atmosphere rotates with a five-day period, corresponding to an equatorial wind speed of 90 m/s. Angular velocity is roughly constant on spherical shells, and decreases linearly with altitude to zero at the surface. The direction of rotation is the same as that of the solid planet, which is retrograde--opposite to the direction of orbital motion, but the 5-day period is short compared to the 243-day spin period of the solid planet or to the mean solar day, which is 117 Earth-days at the surface. The problem with the superrotation is that shearing stresses tend to transfer angular momentum downward, and would slow the atmosphere until it is spinning with the solid planet. Some organized circulation pattern is counteracting the tendency, but the pattern has not been identified. A simple Hadley-type circulation cannot do it because such a circulation is zonally symmetric and Hide's Theorem states that in an axisymmetric circulation an extremum in angular momentum per unit mass M can exist only at the surface. Venus violates the last condition, having a maximum of retrograde M on the equator at 70-80 km altitude. This leaves waves and eddies to maintain the superrotation but the length scales and forcing mechanisms for these motions need to be specified. Possible forcing mechanisms associated with waves, eddies and tides are discussed.

  7. The magnetic barrier at Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, T.L.; Luhmann, J.G.; Russell, C.T. (Univ. of California, Los Angeles (USA))

    1991-07-01

    The magnetic barrier at Venus is a region within which the magnetic pressure dominates all other pressure contributions. The barrier is formed in the inner region of the dayside magnetosheath to transfer solar wind momentum flux to the ionosphere. Passes through the dayside magnetosheath and ionopause with Pioneer Venus have allowed us to probe the magnetic barrier directly. These passes have been used to construct altitude profiles of the barrier. Here, the authors define the ionopause as the lower boundary of the barrier. The upper boundary is defined as the altitude where the magnetosheath magnetic pressure is equal to half of the upstream solar wind dynamic pressure corrected by the boundary normal angle. The magnetic barrier is strongest at the subsolar point and weakens as expected with increasing solar zenith angle. The existence of a north-south asymmetry in the barrier strength is also demonstrated. The magnetic barrier is about 200 km thick at the subsolar point and 800 km thick at the terminator, which is comparable with the so-called mantle. They find that the magnetic barrier transfers most of the solar wind dynamic pressure to the ionosphere via the enhanced magnetic pressure. The convected field gasdynamic model is found to predict the correct bow shock location if the magnetic barrier is treated as the obstacle.

  8. Venus gravity - A harmonic analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bills, Bruce G.; Jones, Robert L.; Kiefer, Walter S.

    1987-01-01

    An improved model of Venusian global gravity has been obtained by fitting an eighteenth-degree and eighteenth-order spherical harmonic series to 78 orbital arcs of high altitude (950-1350 km at periapsis) tracking data and 351 orbital arcs of lower-altitude (150-200 km at periapsis) data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO). Compared to a recently published tenth-degree model of Mottinger et al. (1985), which is based on the 78 high-altitude arcs only, the current model provides a significant improvement in resolution and fidelity. As a measure of this improvement, it is noted that for the low-altitude arcs alone, the variance of the residuals for the present model is reduced to 19 percent of the data variance, compared to 51 percent for the tenth-degree model. Venus differs significantly from the earth in that it exhibits a significant correlation between long-wavelength topography and gravity. The gravity/topography spectral admittances are inconsistent with either Airy or Pratt isostasy, but are consistent with dynamic support by mantle convection.

  9. Venus and Beyond Using the Ariane ASAP Launch Capability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Penzo, Paul A.

    1999-01-01

    The cost of executing planetary missions in the next ten years is expected to decrease significantly. The principle reason is that new technology is reducing spacecraft mass while increasing capability. Another reason is that launch costs are expected to decrease. A move in this direction is to permit important planetary missions to fly as secondary payloads, and this opportunity is now provided by the French on the Ariane 5 using the Ariane Structure for Auxiliary Payloads (ASAP). The ASAP will fly on GEO missions, and can boost up to eight 100 kg (or 200 kg, if paired) payloads into the elliptical geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO), which delivers large communication satellites to GEO. An efficient multi-burn method has been developed by this author to deliver these small spacecraft from GTO to Mars and other destinations. This method, referred to here as Moon-Earth Gravity Assist (MEGA), requires 3 or more major maneuvers together with close flybys of the earth and moon. An example for a Mars 2003 mission (not to scale) is shown in Figure 1, where, once in GTO, the first burn sends the spacecraft beyond the Moon to a distance of 1.2 million kilometers. At apogee, the second burn targets to an encounter with the Moon such that a swingby returns the spacecraft to the Earth with a 300 km perigee, and with an inclination such that a perigee burn will send the spacecraft off to Mars with the required escape velocity vector. Details of this method, specifically for Mars missions, can be found in Reference 3. A similar strategy works for Venus, with some caveats. This method is required to work for any Ariane 5 launch date over a three month period, to ensure a high probability of getting off the ground. The launch period is provided by fixing the Earth escape date (3rd burn), but allowing the high ellipse (beyond the Moon) period to vary by one or two months, and also allowing a one to two month wait time in GTO (or other orbit) before the first burn is performed. Figure 2 shows the trajectory profiles for the early and late GTO launch dates for a Mars 2003 mission. Venus. which is an inner planet, poses special problems for the MEGA process. The escape direction is reverse that of Earth's motion, and the GTO apogee arrival

  10. Erosion and the rocks of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sagan, C.

    1976-01-01

    Photographs of the surface of Venus returned by the Venera 9 and 10 spacecraft have revealed the presence of smooth and angular rockline forms. Two mechanisms previously suggested (Sagan, 1975) for erosion of crater ramparts on the surface of Venus might also explain the erosion of rocks. Chemical weathering by the hydrochloric, hydrofluoric, and sulfuric acids present in the atmosphere of Venus may have been sufficient to erode angular projections of silicous rocks. Alternatively, the contours of rocks containing such low-melting materials as NaOH, KOH, HgS and KNO2 may have softened as the result of exposure to the high surface temperatures of the planet.

  11. Comet Halley: The view from Pioneer Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-01-01

    The plans to scan Halley's Comet at close range using the Pioneer Venus Orbiter are discussed. The composition of comets, their paths through space, and the history of comet encounters are examined. An ultraviolet spectrometer aboard the spacecraft will determine the composition of the gaseous coma and will measure the total gas production during its passage. The Pioneer Venus Orbiter will observe the comet for five weeks before solar interference with communications occurs as Venus passes on the far side of the Sun from Earth. Diagrams of the solar system and the relationship of the comet to the planets and the Sun are provided.

  12. Signs of possible volcanism on Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Ksanfomaliti, L.V.

    1985-04-01

    In this paper the author discusses some independent facts established by exploration of Venus, and endeavors to clarify the origin of such phenomena as the electrical activity of the atmosphere, the bimodal particle distribution in the clouds on Venus, and the variable properties of the upper cloud deck, all discovered by polarimetric and radiometric techniques. Analysis of recent spacecraft data suggests that the frequent electrical discharges in the surface layers of the Venus atmosphere, the variable density of the submicron haze above the clouds and certain properties of the cloud microphysics can jointly be explained if the planetary surface is undergoing volcanic eruptions.

  13. Carbon dioxide opacity of the Venus' atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snels, Marcel; Stefani, Stefania; Grassi, Davide; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Adriani, Alberto

    2014-11-01

    Venus' atmosphere consists of about 95% of carbon dioxide, which accounts for most of the absorption of the radiation emitted by its hot surface. The large densities and high temperatures of Venus' atmosphere make the absorption much more complex than for low density atmospheres such as Earth or Mars. Available experimental data are at present insufficient and theoretical models inadequate to describe complex absorption line shapes and collision-induced phenomena. Here we present a survey of all absorption and scattering processes which influence the transparency of Venus' atmosphere for what concerns carbon dioxide.

  14. Dielectric surface properties of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pettengill, G. H.; Wilt, R. J.; Ford, P. G.

    1992-01-01

    It has been known for over a decade that certain high-altitude regions on Venus exhibit bizarre radar-scattering and radiothermal-emission behavior. For example, observed values for normal-incidence power reflection coefficients in these areas can exceed 0.5; enhanced back scatter in some mountainous areas in the Magellan SAR images creates a bright surface with the appearance of snow; and reduced thermal emission in the anomalous areas makes the surface there appear hundreds of degrees cooler than the corresponding physical surface temperatures. The inferred radio emissivity in several of these regions falls to 0.3 for horizontal linear polarization at viewing angles in the range 20 deg - 40 deg. Several explanations have been offered for these linked phenomena. One involves single-surface reflection from a sharp discontinuity separating two media that have extremely disparate values of electromagnetic propagation. The mismatch may occur in either or both the real (associated with propagation velocity) or imaginary (associated with absorption) components of the relevant indices of refraction, and the discontinuity must take place over a distance appreciably shorter than a wavelength. An example of such an interaction of Earth would occur at the surface of a body of water. At radio wavelengths, water has an index of refraction of 9 (dielectric permittivity of about 80), and an associated loss factor that varies strongly with the amount of dissolved salts, but is generally significant. Its single-surface radar reflectivity at normal incidence is about 0.65, and the corresponding emissivity (viewed at the same angle) is therefore 0.35. Both these values are similar to the extremes found on Venus, but in the absence of liquid water, the process on Venus requires a different explanation. Two of the present authors (Pettengill and Ford) have suggested that scattering from a single surface possessing a very high effective dielectric permittivity could explain many of the unusual characteristics displayed by the Venus surface. A second explantion relates to the volume scattering that results from successive interactions with one or more interfaces interior to the planetary surface. If the near-surface material has a moderately low index of refraction (to ensure that a substantial fraction of the radiation incident from outside is not reflected, but rather penetrates into the surface), and a very low internal propagation loss, successive internal reflections can eventually redirect much of the energy back through the surface toward the viewer. The necessary conditions for this process to be effective are a low internal propagation loss coupled with efficient internal reflection. At sufficiently low temperatures, fractured water ice displays both the necessary low loss and near-total internal reflection. The possibility that this mechanism might be acting on Venus has recently been put forward.

  15. Dynamic models for ridge belt formation on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simons, Mark; Solomon, Sean C.; Hager, Bradford H.

    1991-01-01

    The hypothesis is tested that the lithospheric shortening expressed by the ridge belts is the result of convective downwelling beneath the lowland planitia. Dynamical models are developed for the interaction of mantle convection with the crust and the models are compared to the characteristics of the ridge belts in Lavinia Planitia. The models support the hypothesis that convective stresses can produce the broad topographic depression of lowlands on Venus and can lead to the formation of ridge belts on either side of the topographic low.

  16. Spacecraft for flight in the atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moskalenko, G. M.

    1980-01-01

    Possible configurations of space vehicles which would be delivered to Venus by rocket system in order to autonomously carry out flights in an automatic (and possibly piloted) mode are considered with respect to mission and flight altitude. Base (high altitude) vehicles, operating at pressure, sendity, and temperature corresponding to those on Earth at sea level, will have little maneuverability, will serve as carriers for equipment, scientific devices, and other cargo, and will study the gas composition of the Venus atmosphere from above. Low altitude vehicles will explore the planet from flight altitude in the vicinity of the planet's surface, as well as land on it. Analogous to deep submergence vehicles such as the bathyscaphe and the bathyplane, they will have a certain amount of maneuverability and will study the atmospheric boundary layer from below. The advantages of aerostats in this environment are discussed. Drawings of the aerostatic base station, the variable-length aerostatic sing vehicle, and the hybrid aerostatic vehicle with attached wings are included.

  17. Extreme Temperature Pulse Injection Position Sensor for Venus Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Jerri; Kumar, Nishant; Singh, Sase; Narine, Roop

    After developed two types of extreme temperature motors (Switched Reluctance Motor and Blushless DC Motor), Honeybee Robotics has successfully developed an Extreme Temperature Pulse Injection Position Sensor that can be used to commutate motors and provide positional information. This paper presents an insight into the challenges of designing extreme tempera-ture electro-mechanical system and provides results of the experiment performed in the Venus environment. The operational temperature range for existing commutation devices, include Hall Sensors, Resolvers and Encoders is limited to temperatures less than 180C. The Extreme Temperature Pulse Injection Position Sensor is capable of working continuously at 460C and at 92 atm. The design of this device involves a unique rotor design and an innovative phase pulsing algorithm implemented through a high speed DSP. The shape of the rotor provides a unique flow-path to the lines-of-flux through the poles of the stator. The pulsing algorithm makes it possible to nullify the effects of parametric changes (wire resistance, permeability, air gap, etc.) due to increase in temperature. The algorithm relies on the relative flux density between two stator poles rather than the absolute measurement of the flux density in each pole. Extreme temperature position sensor, along with scalable extreme temperature motor and gearhead allow for creation of robot arms and even mobility systems for future Venus missions to achieve their goals and objectives.

  18. A Potential Super-Venus in the Kepler-69 System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kane, Stephen R.; Barclay, Thomas; Gelino, Dawn M.

    2013-06-01

    Transiting planets have greatly expanded and diversified the exoplanet field. These planets provide greater access to characterization of exoplanet atmospheres and structure. The Kepler mission has been particularly successful in expanding the exoplanet inventory, even to planets smaller than the Earth. The orbital period sensitivity of the Kepler data is now extending into the habitable zones of their host stars, and several planets larger than the Earth have been found to lie therein. Here we examine one such proposed planet, Kepler-69c. We provide new orbital parameters for this planet and an in-depth analysis of the habitable zone. We find that, even under optimistic conditions, this 1.7 R ? planet is unlikely to be within the habitable zone of Kepler-69. Furthermore, the planet receives an incident flux of 1.91 times the solar constant, which is similar to that received by Venus. We thus suggest that this planet is likely a super-Venus rather than a super-Earth in terms of atmospheric properties and habitability, and we propose follow-up observations to disentangle the ambiguity.

  19. A POTENTIAL SUPER-VENUS IN THE KEPLER-69 SYSTEM

    SciTech Connect

    Kane, Stephen R.; Gelino, Dawn M. [NASA Exoplanet Science Institute, Caltech, MS 100-22, 770 South Wilson Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Barclay, Thomas, E-mail: skane@ipac.caltech.edu [NASA Ames Research Center, M/S 244-30, Moffett Field, CA 94035 (United States)

    2013-06-20

    Transiting planets have greatly expanded and diversified the exoplanet field. These planets provide greater access to characterization of exoplanet atmospheres and structure. The Kepler mission has been particularly successful in expanding the exoplanet inventory, even to planets smaller than the Earth. The orbital period sensitivity of the Kepler data is now extending into the habitable zones of their host stars, and several planets larger than the Earth have been found to lie therein. Here we examine one such proposed planet, Kepler-69c. We provide new orbital parameters for this planet and an in-depth analysis of the habitable zone. We find that, even under optimistic conditions, this 1.7 R{sub Circled-Plus} planet is unlikely to be within the habitable zone of Kepler-69. Furthermore, the planet receives an incident flux of 1.91 times the solar constant, which is similar to that received by Venus. We thus suggest that this planet is likely a super-Venus rather than a super-Earth in terms of atmospheric properties and habitability, and we propose follow-up observations to disentangle the ambiguity.

  20. A Potential Super-Venus in the Kepler-69 System

    E-print Network

    Kane, Stephen R; Gelino, Dawn M

    2013-01-01

    Transiting planets have greatly expanded and diversified the exoplanet field. These planets provide greater access to characterization of exoplanet atmospheres and structure. The Kepler mission has been particularly successful in expanding the exoplanet inventory, even to planets smaller than the Earth. The orbital period sensitivity of the Kepler data is now extending into the Habitable Zones of their host stars, and several planets larger than the Earth have been found to lie therein. Here we examine one such proposed planet, Kepler-69c. We provide new orbital parameters for this planet and an in-depth analysis of the Habitable Zone. We find that, even under optimistic conditions, this 1.7 R$_\\oplus$ planet is unlikely to be within the Habitable Zone of Kepler-69. Furthermore, the planet receives an incident flux of 1.91 times the solar constant, which is similar to that received by Venus. We thus suggest that this planet is likely a super-Venus rather than a super-Earth in terms of atmospheric properties a...

  1. Three 2012 Transits of Venus: From Earth, Jupiter, and Saturn

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasachoff, Jay M.; Schneider, G.; Babcock, B. A.; Lu, M.; Edelman, E.; Reardon, K.; Widemann, T.; Tanga, P.; Dantowitz, R.; Silverstone, M. D.; Ehrenreich, D.; Vidal-Madjar, A.; Nicholson, P. D.; Willson, R. C.; Kopp, G. A.; Yurchyshyn, V. B.; Sterling, A. C.; Scherrer, P. H.; Schou, J.; Golub, L.; McCauley, P.; Reeves, K.

    2013-01-01

    We observed the 2012 June 6/5 transit seen from Earth (E/ToV), simultaneously with Venus Express and several other spacecraft not only to study the Cytherean atmosphere but also to provide an exoplanet-transit analog. From Haleakala, the whole transit was visible in coronal skies; among our instruments was one of the world-wide Venus Twilight Experiment's nine coronagraphs. Venus's atmosphere became visible before first contact. SacPeak/IBIS provided high-resolution images at H?/carbon-dioxide. Big Bear's NST also provided high-resolution observations of the Cytherean atmosphere and black-drop evolution. Our liaison with UH's Mees Solar Observatory scientists provided magneto-optical imaging at calcium and potassium. Solar Dynamics Observatory's AIA and HMI, and the Solar Optical Telescope (SOT) and X-ray Telescope (XRT) on Hinode, and total-solar-irradiance measurements with ACRIMSAT and SORCE/TIM, were used to observe the event as an exoplanet-transit analog. On September 20, we imaged Jupiter for 14 Hubble Space Telescope orbits, centered on a 10-hour ToV visible from Jupiter (J/ToV), as an exoplanet-transit analog in our own solar system, using Jupiter as an integrating sphere. Imaging was good, although much work remains to determine if we can detect the expected 0.01% solar irradiance decrease at Jupiter and the even slighter differential effect between our violet and near-infrared filters caused by Venus's atmosphere. We also give a first report on our currently planned December 21 Cassini UVIS observations of a transit of Venus from Saturn (S/ToV). Our E/ToV expedition was sponsored by the Committee for Research and Exploration/National Geographic Society; supplemented: NASA/AAS's Small Research Grant Program. We thank Rob Ratkowski, Stan Truitt, Rob Lucas, Aram Friedman, and Eric Pilger '82 at Haleakala, and Joseph Gangestad '06 at Big Bear for assistance, and Lockheed Martin Solar and Astrophysics Lab and Hinode science and operations teams for support for coordinated observations with NASA satellites. Our J/ToV observations were based on observations made with HST, operated by AURA, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555; these observations are associated with program #13067.

  2. NASA World Wind: Opensource GIS for Mission Operations

    Microsoft Academic Search

    David G. Bell; Frank Kuehnel; Chris Maxwell; Randy Kim; Kushyar Kasraie; Tom Gaskins; Patrick Hogan; Joe Coughlan

    2007-01-01

    This paper describes NASA World Wind, its technical architecture and performance, and its emerging use for mission operations. World Wind is a geographic information system that provides graphical access to terabytes of imagery and elevation models for planets and other celestial objects including satellite and other data of the Earth, Moon, Mars, Venus, and Jupiter; as well as astronomical data

  3. Chart titled GALILEO MISSION EVENTS shows spacecraft's timeline

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    Chart titled GALILEO MISSION EVENTS shows spacecraft's timeline from launch into low Earth orbit through its Jupiter tour. Other events include Venus encounter, Earth 1 encounter, Gaspra encounter, Earth 2 encounter, Ida encounter, probe release, and Io/Relay/Joi satellite encounters. The events span approximately eight years (1989 through 1997).

  4. IR spectrometers for Venus and Mars measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drummond, Rachel; Neefs, Eddy; Vandaele, Ann C.

    2012-07-01

    The SOIR spectrometer [1] is an infra-red spectrometer that has performed over 500 solar occultation measurements of the Venus atmosphere, profiling major and minor constituents and studying aerosol absorption, temperature and pressure effects. NOMAD is a 3-channel spectrometer for Mars occultation, limb and nadir measurements. 2 channels are infra-red, the other UV-visible. We will present the technology that enables SOIR and NOMAD to get to parts per billion mixing ratio sensitivities for trace atmospheric components and highlight the improvements made to the SOIR design to enable nadir viewing with NOMAD. Key components include the Acousto-Optical Tunable Filter with radio frequency driver that allows these spectrometers to select the wavelength domain under observation with no need for mechanical moving parts. It also allows background measurements because it is opaque when no RF is applied. The grating with 4 grooves/mm is a very hard to manufacture optical component, and suppliers were very difficult to find. The detector-cooler combination (working at 90K) is from Sofradir/Ricor and the model on board Venus Express is still working after 6 years in space (more on/off cycles that ON hour lifetime problem). The detector MCT mix is slightly altered for nadir observation, in order to reduce thermal background noise and the nadir channel spectrometer is cooled down to 173K by a large V-groove radiator. All the optical components have been enlarged to maximise signal throughput and the slit (that determines spatial and spectral resolution) has also been increased. The spacecraft attitude control system switches from yaw steering for nadir to inertial pointing for solar occultations. 1. Nevejans, D., E. Neefs, E. Van Ransbeeck, S. Berkenbosch, R. Clairquin, L. De Vos, W. Moelans, S. Glorieux, A. Baeke, O. Korablev, I. Vinogradov, Y. Kalinnikov, B. Bach, J.P. Dubois, and E. Villard, Compact high-resolution space-borne echelle grating spectrometer with AOTF based on order sorting for the infrared domain from 2.2 to 4.3 micrometer. Applied Optics, 45(21), 5191-5206 (2006)

  5. Tremolite Decomposition and Water on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, N. M.; Fegley, B., Jr.

    2000-01-01

    We present experimental data showing that the decomposition rate of tremolite, a hydrous mineral, is sufficiently slow that it can survive thermal decomposition on Venus over geologic timescales at current and higher surface temperatures.

  6. The Rarest Eclipse: Transit of Venus

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    The transit of Venus across the disk of the sun is a rare astronomical event that has transfixed astronomers for centuries. June 8, 2004 marked the last occurrence of this event. Due to its extreme rarity (occurring only twice a century) this past transit has been heavily documented and researched by scientists across the globe. This site from the Exploratorium contains educational webcasts and RealMedia streaming coverage of the event. The last instance of the transit of Venus in 1882 is also well documented on this site with an interview from Tony Misch of Lick Observatory and a Quicktime animation made with glass plate negatives. The site provides background information about the planet Venus and the importance of its transit across the sun, as well as information on how to view the event. Educators's will find the "Teacher's Guide" especially useful for lesson and activity plans revolving around Venus.

  7. SOHO Sees Venus' Approach - Duration: 5 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    This video taken by the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) shows the Sun's corona and Venus' approach for the transit. This was taken with the Extreme ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (EIT) in ...

  8. Magellan Paints a Portrait of Venus.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kerr, Richard A.

    1991-01-01

    Details of the landscape of the planet Venus as revealed by the Magellan spacecraft are discussed and illustrated. Advances beyond previous space probes are demonstrated. Details of the program are described. Additional work from this project is proposed. (CW)

  9. Balloons on planet Venus - Final results

    Microsoft Academic Search

    J. Blamont; L. Boloh; V. Kerzhanovich; L. Kogan; M. Kurganskii; V. Linkin; L. Matveenko; M. Roy; D. Patsaev; K. Pichkhadze

    1993-01-01

    On June 11 and 15, 1985 two packages with balloons have been inserted in the atmosphere of Venus from the Soviet VEGA landing modules. This paper summarizes the pressure, temperature, wind illumination and backscattering data from the balloons.

  10. Venus lives!. [evidence for active volcanoes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Charles A.; Francis, Peter W.

    1988-01-01

    Observational evidence which supports the contention that Venus is a volcanically and tectonically active planet is discussed. It is argued that, although there are no observations to date that would prove that Venus has been volcanically active during the last decade, planetological studies presented evidence for youthful volcanic mountains on Venus: the surface of the northern quarter of Venus is considered to be younger than 1 Gy, and some units are likely to be much younger. Because of the small sizes of likely volcanic manifestations and the long intervals expected between eruptions, it is unlikely that any direct evidence of eruptions will be detected with existing and planned spacecraft. It is suggested that future studies of the dynamics and the chemical mixing of the Venusian atmosphere might supply an unequivocal evidence for active volcanism on this planet.

  11. Tier-Scalable Reconnaissance Missions For The Autonomous Exploration Of Planetary Bodies

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Wolfgang Fink; James M. Dohm; Mark A. Tarbell; Trent M. Hare; Victor R. Baker; D. Schulze-Makuch; R. Furfaro; A. G. Fairen; T. P. Ferre; H. Miyamoto; G. Komatsu; W. C. Mahaney

    2007-01-01

    A fundamentally new (scientific) reconnaissance mission concept, termed tier-scalable reconnaissance, for remote planetary (including Earth) atmospheric, surface and subsurface exploration recently has been devised that soon will replace the engineering and safety constrained mission designs of the past, allowing for optimal acquisition of geologic, paleohydrologic, paleoclimatic, and possible astrobiologic information of Venus, Mars, Europa, Ganymede, Titan, Enceladus, Triton, and other

  12. The tectonic and volcanic evolution of Venus: Catastrophic or gradual?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solomon, Sean C.

    1993-01-01

    Radar imaging and altimetry data from the Magellan mission have yielded important new constraints on the tectonic and volcanic history of Venus and on its internal dynamics. The planet lacks global plate tectonics, but a number of chasm systems and corona moat structures have arcuate planforms, asymmetric topogrpahic profiles, and relief analogous to deep-sea trenches on Earth and may be products of limited lithospheric underthrusting or subduction. Several lines of evidence point to a crust and upper mantle stronger than would be predicted by simple extrapolation from Earth and the 450 K greater surface temperature; these include the unrelaxed depths of impact craters, apparently large values of elastic lithosphere thickness, and large ratios of gravity to topography. The density of impact craters indicates an averate crater retention age of about 500 My, but not more than 5% of the recognized craters have been volcanically embayed. This last observation has led to the proposal that Venus has been subjected to one or more global resurfacing events, the latest about 500 My ago, and that the volcanic flux during intervals between such events has been low. That more recent tectonic activity has been widespread, however, is indicated by the high relief and slopes of mountains, chasm walls, and plateau margins; the significant fraction (0.3) of impact craters deformed by younger faults; and the postformational vertical deformation of long channels. Interior dynamical scenarios advanced to account for episodic volcanic resurfacing include catastrophic overturn of a global lithosphere thickened by cooling or compositional buoyancy and strongly time-dependent mantle convective heat flux. Outgassing considerations and analogy with Earth and other terrestrial planets, however, suggests that such catastrophic models are unlikely. If the mantle of Venus cooled more efficiently than that of Earth because of, say, different boundary conditions, a different flow law, or a different degree of layering, then the planet may in the last 500 My have attained lesser mantle temperatures, lower mantle heat flux, and a significantly lesser rate of magma production than Earth yet still display evidence for ongoing convection and active tectonics. Such a 'cold Venus' scenario would be broadly consistent with observations yet be characterized by a gradual volcanic and tectonic evolution.

  13. Effects of Gravity-Assist Timing on Outer-Planet Missions Using Solar-Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woo, Byoungsam; Coverstone, Victoria L.; Cupples, Michael

    2004-01-01

    Missions to the outer planets for spacecraft with a solar-electric propulsion system (SEPS) and that utilize a single Venus gravity assist are investigated. The trajectories maximize the delivered mass to the target planet for a range of flight times. A comparison of the trajectory characteristics (delivered mass, launch energy and onboard propulsive energy) is made for various Venus gravity assist opportunities. Methods to estimate the delivered mass to the outer planets are developed.

  14. A dynamic model of Venus's gravity field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, W. S.; Richards, M. A.; Hager, B. H.; Bills, B. G.

    1984-01-01

    Unlike Earth, long wavelength gravity anomalies and topography correlate well on Venus. Venus's admittance curve from spherical harmonic degree 2 to 18 is inconsistent with either Airy or Pratt isostasy, but is consistent with dynamic support from mantle convection. A model using whole mantle flow and a high viscosity near surface layer overlying a constant viscosity mantle reproduces this admittance curve. On Earth, the effective viscosity deduced from geoid modeling increases by a factor of 300 from the asthenosphere to the lower mantle. These viscosity estimates may be biased by the neglect of lateral variations in mantle viscosity associated with hot plumes and cold subducted slabs. The different effective viscosity profiles for Earth and Venus may reflect their convective styles, with tectonism and mantle heat transport dominated by hot plumes on Venus and by subducted slabs on Earth. Convection at degree 2 appears much stronger on Earth than on Venus. A degree 2 convective structure may be unstable on Venus, but may have been stabilized on Earth by the insulating effects of the Pangean supercontinental assemblage.

  15. A dynamic model of Venus's gravity field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, W. S.; Richards, M. A.; Hager, B. H.; Bills, B. G.

    1986-01-01

    Unlike Earth, long wavelength gravity anomalies and topography correlate well on Venus. Venus's admittance curve from spherical harmonic degree 2 to 18 is inconsistent with either Airy or Pratt isostasy, but is consistent with dynamic support from mantle convection. A model using whole mantle flow and a high viscosity near surface layer overlying a constant viscosity mantle reproduces this admittance curve. On Earth, the effective viscosity deduced from geoid modeling increases by a factor of 300 from the asthenosphere to the lower mantle. These viscosity estimates may be biased by the neglect of lateral variations in mantle viscosity associated with hot plumes and cold subducted slabs. The different effective viscosity profiles for Earth and Venus may reflect their convective styles, with tectonism and mantle heat transport dominated by hot plumes on Venus and by subducted slabs on Earth. Convection at degree 2 appears much stronger on Earth than on Venus. A degree 2 convective structure may be unstable on Venus, but may have been stabilized on Earth by the insulating effects of the Pangean supercontinental assemblage.

  16. The rate of volcanism on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fegley, Bruce, Jr.; Prinn, Ronald G.

    1988-01-01

    The maintenance of the global H2SO4 clouds on Venus requires volcanism to replenish the atmospheric SO2 which is continually being removed from the atmosphere by reaction with calcium minerals on the surface of Venus. The first laboratory measurements of the rate of one such reaction, between SO2 and calcite (CaCO3) to form anhydrite (CaSO4), are reported. If the rate of this reaction is representative of the SO2 reaction rate at the Venus surface, then we estimate that all SO2 in the Venus atmosphere (and thus the H2SO4 clouds) will be removed in 1.9 million years unless the lost SO2 is replenished by volcanism. The required rate of volcanism ranges from about 0.4 to about 11 cu km of magma erupted per year, depending on the assumed sulfur content of the erupted material. If this material has the same composition as the Venus surface at the Venera 13, 14 and Vega 2 landing sites, then the required rate of volcanism is about 1 cu km per year. This independent geochemically estimated rate can be used to determine if either (or neither) of the two discordant (2 cu km/year vs. 200 to 300 cu km/year) geophysically estimated rates is correct. The geochemically estimated rate also suggests that Venus is less volcanically active than the Earth.

  17. Venus' thermospheric temperature field using a refraction model at terminator : comparison with 2012 transit observations using SDO/HMI and NSO/DST/FIRS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widemann, Thomas; Tanga, Paolo; Père, Christophe; Jaeggli, Sarah; Reardon, Kevin; Pasachoff, Jay M.

    2014-05-01

    The transit of Venus in June 2012 provided a unique case study of an Earth-size planet's atmosphere transiting in front of its parent star at 0.7AU, while at the same time ESA's Venus Express orbiter observed the evening terminator at solar ingress and solar egress. We report on mesospheric temperature at Venus' morning terminator using SDO/HMI aureole photometry and comparison with Venus Express. Close to ingress and egress phases, we have shown that the aureole photometry reflects the local density scale height and the altitude of the refracting layer (Tanga et al. 2012). The lightcurve of each spatial resolution element of the aureole is compared to a two-parameter model to constrain the meridional temperature gradient along the terminator. Our measurements are in agreement with the VEx/SOIR temperatures obtained during orbit 2238 at evening terminator during solar ingress (46.75N - LST = 6.075PM) and solar egress (31.30N - LST = 6.047PM) captured from the Venus Express orbiter at the time Venus transited the Sun for Earth-based observers. We also performed spectroscopy and polarimetry during the transit of Venus focusing on extracting signatures of CO2 absorption. Observations were taken during the first half of the transit using the Facility InfraRed Spectropolarimeter on the Dunn Solar Telescope. Although the predicted CO2 transmission spectrum of Venus was not particularly strong at 1565 nm, this region of the H-band often used in magnetic field studies of the Sun's photosphere provides a particularly flat solar continuum with few atmospheric and molecular lines. Sun-subtracted Venus limb observations show intensity distribution of vibrational CO2 bands 221 2v + 2?2 + ?3 at 1.571um and 141 ?1 + 4?2 + ?3 at 1.606um. Data independently allow to constrain temperature as well as cross-terminator thermospheric winds.

  18. Low-Altitude Exploration of the Venus Atmosphere by Balloon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2010-01-01

    The planet Venus represents an exciting target for future exploration by spacecraft. One target of scientific interest is the lower atmosphere, which represents an environment of high temperature and moderate to high atmospheric pressure. This represents a considerable challenge to the technical art of ballooning, but one which may be amenable to solution. Several possible designs for low-altitude balloons are discussed. Conceptual design for three mission examples are analyzed: a conventional balloon operating below the cloud level at an altitude of 25 kilometers, a large rigid-envelope balloon operating near the surface at an altitude of 5 kilometers, and a small, technology demonstrator rigid-envelope balloon operating at 5 kilometers.

  19. Venus - Landslide in Navka Region

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    The Magellan spacecraft has observed remnant landslide deposits apparently resulting from the collapse of volcanic structures. This Magellan radar image is centered about 25.4 degrees south latitude and 308 degrees east longitude in the southwestern Navka Region of Venus. The image shows a 17.4 kilometer (10.8 mile) diameter volcanic dome on the plains. The dome is approximately 1.86 kilometers (1.2 mile) in height and it has a slope of about 23 degrees. The northwest and northeast flanks of the dome have collapsed to form landslides that have deposited debris on the plains. The image shows an area 110 kilometers (68 miles) across and 100 kilometers (62 miles) in length.

  20. Results of the first statistical study of pioneer Venus orbiter plasma observations in the distant Venus tail: Evidence for a hemispheric asymmetry in the pickup of ionospheric ions

    SciTech Connect

    Intriligator, D.S. (Carmel Research Center, Santa Monica, CA (USA))

    1989-02-01

    Pioneer Venus Orbiter plasma and magnetometer observations from the first nine tail seasons of crossings of the Venus wake are used to study ion pickup in the far wake of an unmagnetized object embedded in the solar wind. This first statistical study treats all of the plasma spectra containing pickup ions in the vicinity of the Venus tail. The author finds a hemispheric asymmetry in the pickup of ionospheric ions, with approximately four times more O{sup +} events observed in the northern magnetic hemisphere (where Z{double prime} > O), i.e., the induced electric field points outward, (away from the ionopause boundary) than in the southern (Z{double prime} < O) magnetic hemisphere. Out of a total of 167 large O{sup +} events, 125, or 75%, occurred in the northern hemisphere when position is calculated in terms of Venus radii and 129 or 77% occurred in the northern hemisphere when position is expressed in gyroradii. This hemisphere asymmetry in ion pickup is consistent with the prediction of the Cloutier et al. (1974) mass loading model for Venusian ions above the ionopause boundary.