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Sample records for aboard venus express

  1. Questions About Venus after Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay

    2016-04-01

    The observations from Venus Express for nearly 13 Venus years or 26 solar days from April 2006 till 27 November 2014. Earlier, Venus has been explored by fly-by spacecraft, orbiters, descending probes, landers and floating balloons. These data have been supplemented by many ground based observations at reflected solar wavelengths, short and long wave infrared, millimeter to radio waves. Venus Express added significantly to the collection that will continue to be examined for understanding the planet's atmosphere and continuing analysis will inform us about new facets of the atmosphere and raise new questions. Inter-comparison of the measurements have been able to provide a general idea of the global atmosphere. However, re-visiting these observations also raises some questions about the atmosphere that have not received much attention lately but deserve to be explored and considered for future measurements. These questions are about the precise atmospheric composition in the deep atmosphere, the atmospheric state in the lower atmosphere, the static stability of the lower atmosphere, the clouds and hazes, the nature of the ultraviolet absorber(s) in the cloud layer, and wind speed and direction near the surface from equator to the pole, interaction between the atmosphere and the solid planet. The answers to these questions are important for a better understanding of Venus, its weather and climate and how the climate has evolved. The questions include: (i) What are the implications of the supercritical state of the two primary constituents of the Venus atmosphere - carbon dioxide and nitrogen in the lower atmosphere? (ii) Is the Venus (lower) atmosphere well mixed? (iii) What determines the observed alternating stable and unstable layers (static stability) in the lower atmosphere? (iv) What causes the contrasts seen in reflected sunlight which are largest at ultraviolet wavelengths and very muted at other visible wavelengths? (v) what causes the morning -afternoon

  2. Future Drag Measurements from Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keating, Gerald; Mueller-Wodarg, Ingo; Forbes, Jeffrey M.; Yelle, Roger; Bruinsma, Sean; Withers, Paul; Lopez-Valverde, Miguel Angel; Theriot, Res. Assoc. Michael; Bougher, Stephen

    Beginning in July 2008 during the Venus Express Extended Mission, the European Space Agency will dramatically drop orbital periapsis from near 250km to near 180km above the Venus North Polar Region. This will allow orbital decay measurements of atmospheric densities to be made near the Venus North Pole by the VExADE (Venus Express Atmospheric Drag Experiment) whose team leader is Ingo Mueller-Wodarg. VExADE consists of two parts VExADE-ODA (Orbital Drag Analysis from radio tracking data) and VExADE-ACC (Accelerometer in situ atmospheric density measurements). Previous orbital decay measurements of the Venus thermosphere were obtained by Pioneer Venus from the 1970's into the 1990's and from Magellan in the 1990's. The major difference is that the Venus Express will provide measurements in the North Polar Region on the day and night sides, while the earlier measurements were obtained primarily near the equator. The periapsis will drift upwards in altitude similar to the earlier spacecraft and then be commanded down to its lower original values. This cycle in altitude will allow estimates of vertical structure and thus thermospheric temperatures in addition to atmospheric densities. The periapsis may eventually be lowered even further so that accelerometers can more accurately obtain density measurements of the polar atmosphere as a function of altitude, latitude, longitude, local solar time, pressure, Ls, solar activity, and solar wind on each pass. Bias in accelerometer measurements will be determined and corrected for by accelerometer measurements obtained above the discernable atmosphere on each pass. The second experiment, VExADE-ACC, is similar to the accelerometer experiments aboard Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter that carried similar accelerometers in orbit around Mars. The risk involved in the orbital decay and accelerometer measurements is minimal. We have not lost any spacecraft orbiting Venus or Mars due to unexpected

  3. Plasma in the near Venus tail: Venus Express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Zhang, T. L.; Woch, J.; Wei, Y.; Fedorov, A.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.

    2013-12-01

    Although Venus has no global intrinsic magnetic fields, it possesses a long magnetotail of induced origin. The topology of the tail is determined by the interplanetary magnetic field orientation. We present recent plasma and magnetic field observations in the near Venus tail (X≥-3RV) made by the Venus Express spacecraft. We show that ion acceleration in the Venus plasma sheet is produced by the slingshot effect of the draping magnetic field lines, though some features as differential streaming of different ion species point to the existence of other forces. We explain a bell shape of ion spectrograms while the spacecraft crosses the current sheet. The absence of a balance between the lobe magnetic pressure and thermal pressure of plasma in the plasma sheet indicates a dynamic rather than a static equilibrium in the Venus magnetotail. A strong asymmetry of the plasma sheet is controlled by the direction of the motional electric field in the upstream solar wind. In the hemisphere pointed in the direction of the motional electric field, the j×B force accelerates plasma tailward supplying the plasma sheet, while in the opposite hemisphere, the flow pattern occurs less regularly with smaller speeds but higher number densities.

  4. Education and Public Outreach using Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pertzborn, Rosalyn A.; Limaye, S. S.; Pi, H. Y.

    2006-12-01

    Nearly two decades after NASA’s Magellan radar mission to Venus, its atmosphere and surface is being investigated with new instruments by the Venus Express spacecraft from orbit. It was launched by the European Space Agency (ESA) on 11 November 2005, and has been orbiting Venus since April 2006. This mission provides an opportunity to focus on comparative planetary meteorology for education and public outreach efforts. We present an inquiry-based approach for informal and formal learning audiences by comparing atmospheric states of Venus and Earth using data available from Earth weather satellites and Venus Express. In the context of a middle or a high school curriculum, the science themes of Venus Express mission provide many connections to the themes of the National Science Education Standards. For the general audiences, Venus presents many of its mysteries such as its super rotation in the form of a giant hemispheric vortex akin to a hurricane, its deep atmosphere with sulfuric acid clouds, and the huge greenhouse effect concepts that are familiar to many. More than a dozen US scientists are participating in the Venus Express mission with support from NASA.

  5. Analysis of Venus Express optical extinction due to aerosols in the upper haze of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parkinson, C. D.; Bougher, S. W.; Schulte, R.; Gao, P.; Yung, Y. L.; Vandaele, A.; Wilquet, V.; Mahieux, A.; Tellmann, S.

    2013-12-01

    Observations by the SPICAV/SOIR instruments aboard the Venus Express (VEx) spacecraft have revealed that the upper haze (UH) of Venus, between 70 and 90 km, is variable on the order of days to weeks and that it is populated by two particle modes. Gao et al. (submitted, Icarus, 2013) posit that one mode is made up of cloud particles that have diffused upwards from the main sulfuric acid cloud deck below, while the other mode is generated in situ by nucleation of sulfuric acid droplets on meteoric dust. They also propose that the observed variability in the UH is caused in part by vertical transient winds. They test this hypothesis by simulating a column of the Venus atmosphere from 40 to 100 km above the surface using a model based upon the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres (CARMA). In this work, we significantly extend the analysis using the new more detailed SOIR/VeRa VEx temperature profiles which better constrain the observed strong CO2 15-micron cooling emission and 4.3-μm near-IR heating in Venus' atmosphere (and consistent with Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (VTGCM) simulations of Brecht et al. (2011)). We discuss our new results in context of the recent VEx observations (Wilquet et al., Icarus 217, 2012) with an intercomparison with the PVO data. We will also discuss similarities and differences arising from the PVO and VEx epochs where they exist. Additionally we report on our efforts self-consistently applying the VTGCM to constrain the degree to which effects due to vertical transient wind simulations can establish variability timescales and number density profiles that match VEx observations.

  6. A Few Highlights from Venus Monitoring Camera on Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markiewicz, Wojciech J.; Titov, D.; Keller, H.; Moissl, R.; Limaye, S.; Ignatiev, N.; Jaumann, R.; Michalik, H.; Thomas, N.

    2008-09-01

    Venus is completely covered by a thick cloud layer whose upper part is composed of sulfuric acid and some unknown aerosols(1). The cloud tops are in fast retrograde rotation (super-rotation), but what is driving this super-rotation is unknown(2). Here we report observations of Venus with the Venus Monitoring Camera3 (VMC) on board the Venus Express spacecraft. Taking advantage of the VMC high resolution imaging and the polar orbit we investigate both global and small scale properties of these clouds, their temporal and latitudinal variations, and derive wind velocities. The Southern polar region is highly variable and can change dramatically on time scales as short as one day, perhaps arising from the injection of SO2 into the mesosphere. The convective cells in the vicinity of the sub-solar point are much smaller than previously inferred(4,5,6), which we interpret as indicating that they are confined to the upper cloud layer, contrary to previous conclusions(7,8), but consistent with more recent study(9). We will also report on surface observations with VMC. (1) Esposito, L.W. et al., in Venus, pp. 484-564, 1983, (2) Limaye, S. S., 2007, J. Geophys. Res., 112, 2007, (3) Markiewicz, W.J. et al., Planet. Space Sci., 55, 1701-1711, 2007, (4) Murray, B.C., et al., Science 183, 1307-1315 (1974), (5) Rossow, W.B. et al., J. Geophys. Res. 85, 8107-8128, 1980, (6) Covey, C.C. and G. Schubert, Nature, 290, 17-20, 1981, (7) Baker II, R.D. and G. Schubert, Nature, 355, 710-712, 1992, (8) Belton, M.J.S. et al., J. Atmos. Sci.. 33, 1394-1417, 1976, (9) Baker, R.D., G. Schubert, and P.W. Jones, J. Geophy. Res., 104, Issue E2, p. 3815-3832, 1999.

  7. Europe Goes to the Venus - The Journey of Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fabrega, J.; Schirmann, T.; McCoy, D.; Sivac, P.

    On 9th November 2005, a Russian Soyuz-Fregat launcher boosted Venus Express into space from the Baikonur cosmodrome, in Kazakhstan. The spacecraft reached its final destination 5 months later, on 11th April 2006, after a journey of 440 millions of kilometres in the solar system. It fired its main engine during 49 minutes and slowed down to be captured into orbit around the planet. A series of manoeuvres then led the spacecraft to its operational orbit, circling the poles with a period of 24h along a highly elliptical orbit, with an altitude between 250 km and 66,000 km. It has then undertaken the most comprehensive study ever of the Venusian atmosphere, over a period of at least 2 Venus sidereal days (486 days). Venus Express is the first European mission to Earth's twin, only two years after Mars Express, the first ESA mission to Mars. It was developed in less than 4 years from concept to launch, which also makes it the fastest ESA Science mission ever done. The global budget of the mission is 220 millions Euro, covering development of the spacecraft, launch and operations.

  8. Venus Express and Venus Climate Orbiter: An Opportunity for mutual occultations to investigate the Venus Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, S.

    2003-04-01

    The Venus Express orbiter mission planned for launch in 2005 and the Japanese Planet C Orbiter Mission to Venus planned for launch in 2008 together provide an unprecedented opportunity to investigate the thermal structure of the atmosphere of Venus using the radio occultation technique. As currently planned, the Venus Ex-press will go into a polar orbit (˜18-24 hour period) and Planet C into a near equato-rial orbit (172^o inclination, ˜30 hour period). These orbits will provide many mu-tual occultations between the two satellites, and periodically, occultations with re-spect to the earth. The advantage of the mutual occultations is that the locations and the time-of-day for the occultation zone is not aliased by the celestial Venus-Earth geometry that results in a very biased sampling of latitudes and local times. A simi-lar approach is being considered for investigation of the Martian atmosphere through Mars Scout opportunity (Kursinski et al., 2003). Unfortunately, due to lack of coor-dination and foresight, the opportunity to use the Mars Global Surveyor and the Mars Odyssey orbiters for mutual occultations has been lost. The realization of this invaluable opportunity requires that the communication in-struments on the two orbiters be mutually compatible and capable of receiving and measuring the Doppler shift of the signal between the two orbiters. Further, it is likely that Venus Express will have completed its nominal mission by the time Planet C arrives at Venus, hence the transmitter on Venus Express will need to be left turned so that the atmospheric signature of the Doppler shift in its signal as received on Planet C orbiter can be analyzed to determine the thermal structure, with perhaps 100 m vertical resolution. Such a high vertical resolution has been demon-strated through mutual occultations between the GPS constellation and METSAT on earth (Kursinski et al., 1997). With the looming prospect of a third orbiter around Venus through NASA's Discovery

  9. Experimental Aerobraking with Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, Hakan

    2013-10-01

    Venus Express has successfully orbited Venus in its polar 24 hour, 250km by 66000 km, orbit since April 2006 and has provided a wealth of new data from our sister planet. Approaching the end of the mission we are now planning an experimental campaign dedicated to aerobraking at altitudes down to as low as about 130km. These low pericentre passes will provide direct measurements of density, temperature, magnetic field and energetic particles in a region not accessible by other methods. Experience of operations and studies of spacecraft responses will be valuable knowledge for possible future missions that might need this techniques as a part of its nominal operations. Aerobraking was considered in the early design phase of the mission but it was fairly soon realised that the nominal mission would not need this. However, a few important design features were maintained in order to allow for this in case it should be needed at a later stage. The inherently stable geometry of the spacecraft configuration and the inclusion of a software mode for aerobraking are the two most important elements from this early design phase. An recent study by industry has determined the constraints for the spacecraft and identified several potential scenarios. The present highly elliptical orbit has as one of its inherent features a downward drift of the pericentre altitude of between 1 and 4 km/day. However, at certain times, when the Sun is in the orbital plane, this drift disappears for a period of up to two weeks. This is a very well suited time to carry out these initial experiments as it is makes operations safer and it reduces the heat input on the spacecraft as the solar panels will be edge-on towards the sun during the aerobraking. Already a number of low altitude operations have been carried out during the so called atmospheric drag campaigns. The spacecraft has then dipped down to altitudes as low as 165 km and a good characterisation of this region has been performed. This

  10. Coordinated HST, Venus Express, and Venus Climate Orbiter Observations of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jessup, Kandis

    2010-09-01

    Currently, there is an unprecedented opportunity to observe the atmosphere of Venus. The Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter {VCO} mission, successfully launched on May 21, 2010, will be observing Venus simultaneously with Venus Express {VEx} Mission from December 2010 onward. A campaign for Earth-based observations coincident with the arrival of VCO at Venus is currently under-way. Fortuitously, the window for observing Venus with HST at a solar elongation greater than 45 degrees is December 25, 2010, thru January 28, 2011. Thus, we are applying to use HST/STIS during that time to observe Venus upper cloud deck {65-75 km} in the ultraviolet {200-600 nm} at high spectral {0.3-0.6 nm} and spatial {40-60 km/pixel} resolution using the G230LB {0.17-0.31 microns} and G430L {0.30-0.57 microns} gratings, with the 52x0.1 slit and the CCD detector. By observing Venus with the slit in its nominal 45 degree orientation, we will map, as a function of latitude, longitude, and time of day, variations in the spatial distribution of the SO2, SO and S2 gases, which absorb strongly between 200 and 320 nm, and an un-identified ultraviolet {UV} absorber known to absorb strongly above 320 nm. Because the spatial distribution of all of the UV absorbers {named and un-named} is tied to the motion of the upper cloud, VCO plans to image the spatial distribution of the UV absorbers and their relationship with the cloud structure and the wind field, in order to derive the wind vectors at the cloud top {Rossow et al., 1990}. However, neither VEx nor VCO has the capability to obtain high spectral and spatial resolution spectroscopy of Venus upper clouds at 200-600 nm. The proposed HST observations will characterize and quantify the absorbers responsible for the cloud features recorded in the UV {200-600 nm} images to be obtained by the VCO/UVI and VEx/VIRTIS instruments, mapping the spatial distribution of these UV absorbers as function of the zonal cloud motion. Additionally, photodissociation of

  11. Toroidal and poloidal magnetic fields at Venus. Venus Express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Woch, J.; Zhang, T. L.; Wei, Y.; Fedorov, A.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.

    2013-10-01

    Magnetic field and plasma measurements carried out onboard Venus Express during solar minimum conditions suggest the existence of two kinds of magnetic field configuration in the Venusian ionosphere. We interpret these as the manifestation of two different types of generation mechanisms for the induced magnetosphere. A different magnetic field topology (toroidal and poloidal) arises if the induced currents are driven either by the solar wind motional electric field or by the Faraday electric field—a conducting ionosphere sees the magnetic field carried by solar wind as a time-varying field. At the dayside, both driving agents produce a similar draping pattern of the magnetic field. However, different magnetic field signatures inherent to both induction mechanisms appear at lower altitudes in the terminator region. The conditions at low solar EUV flux when the ionosphere of Venus becomes magnetized seem to be favorable to distinguish between two different types of the induced fields. We present cases of both types of the magnetic field topology. The cases when the effects of the Faraday induction become well noticeable are especially interesting since they provide us with an example of solar wind interaction with a tiny induced dipole field immersed into the ionosphere. Another interesting case when poloidal magnetic fields are evidently displayed is observed when the IMF vector is almost aligned with the solar wind velocity. In general case, both mechanisms of induction probably complement each other.

  12. Venus Express ground segment and mission operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Warhaut, Manfred; Accomazzo, Andrea

    2005-11-01

    ESOC was responsible for developing the ground-segment facilities for both the Rosetta and Mars Express interplanetary mission. The high degree of commonality between those spacecraft and Venus Express, the twin spacecraft of Mars Express, has allowed large-scale re-use of ground-segment elements and the replication of the operations concepts for those spacecraft, resulting in significant cost and risk reductions.

  13. Venus surface investigation based on VIRTIS measurements on Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arnold, Gabriele; Haus, Rainer; Döhler, Wolfgang; Kappel, David; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Drossart, Pierre

    The dense atmosphere of Venus prevented systematic studies of its surface at optical wavelengths in the past. The discovery of near infrared nightside atmospheric windows has opened a new challenge for detailed surface studies. The Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) on Venus Express is the first experiment collecting continuously nightside surface emission data from the planet. The observed high variability of measured signatures is mainly due to spatial variations of cloud optical depth and surface elevation. The investigation of surface properties requires a convergent approach of radiative transfer simulations and VIR- TIS data analyses. Therefore, a selection of orbits with well calibrated data over the northern hemisphere was performed for footprints that cover a maximum range of surface elevation variations. Radiative transfer calculations demonstrate that the conservative character of cloud multiple scattering below 2 µm and a strong dependence of radiance ratios on surface elevation in this spectral region allow the mapping of surface topography and a retrieval of the surface temperature. To the first order, the surface temperature is a function of ground elevation. Small deviations from this first order dependence have been identified that are possibly due to different surface materials. 1 Institut f¨r Planetologie, Westf¨lische Wilhelms-Universit¨t M¨nster, Wilhelm-Klemm-Str.10, u a a u 48129 M¨nster, Germany u 2 German PlaceNameAerospace PlaceTypeCenter (DLR), Remote Sensing Technology Institute, Dpt. Marine Remote Sensing, Rutherfordstrasse 2, 12489 CityplaceBerlin, countryregionGermany 3 German PlaceNameAerospace PlaceTypeCenter (DLR), Institute for Planetary Research, Rutherfordstrasse 2, 12489 CityplaceBerlin, country-regionGermany 4 LESIA, Observatoire de Paris, CNRS, UPMC, Université Paris-Diderot, 5 place Jules Janssen, e 92195 Meudon, France 5 INAF-IASF (Instituto di Astrofisica Spaziale e Fisica Cosmica), via

  14. Analysis of Venus Express optical extinction due to aerosols in the upper haze of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parkinson, Christopher; Bougher, Stephen; Mahieux, Arnaud; Tellmann, Silvia; Pätzold, Martin; Vandaele, Ann C.; Wilquet, Valérie; Schulte, Rick; Yung, Yuk; Gao, Peter; Bardeen, Charles

    Observations by the SPICAV/SOIR instruments aboard Venus Express (VEx) have revealed that the Upper Haze of Venus is populated by two particle modes, as reported by Wilquet et al. (J. Geophys. Res., 114, E00B42, 2009; Icarus 217, 2012). Gao et al. (In press, Icarus, 2013) posit that the large mode is made up of cloud particles that have diffused upwards from the cloud deck below, while the smaller mode is generated by the in situ nucleation of meteoric dust. They tested this hypothesis by using version 3.0 of the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres, first developed by Turco et al. (J. Atmos. Sci., 36, 699-717, 1979) and upgraded to version 3.0 by Bardeen et al. (The CARMA 3.0 microphysics package in CESM, Whole Atmosphere Working Group Meeting, 2011). Using the meteoric dust production profile of Kalashnikova et al. (Geophys. Res. Lett., 27, 3293-3296, 2000), the sulfur/sulfate condensation nuclei production profile of Imamura and Hashimoto (J. Atmos. Sci., 58, 3597-3612, 2001), and sulfuric acid vapor production profile of Zhang et al. (Icarus, 217, 714-739, 2012), they numerically simulate a column of the Venus atmosphere from 40 to 100 km above the surface. Their aerosol number density results agree well with Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) data from Knollenberg and Hunten (J. Geophys. Res., 85, 8039-8058, 1980), while their gas distribution results match that of Kolodner and Steffes below 55 km (Icarus, 132, 151-169, 1998). The resulting size distribution of cloud particles shows two distinct modes, qualitatively matching the observations of PVO. They also observe a third mode in their results with a size of a few microns at 48 km altitude, which appears to support the existence of the controversial third mode in the PVO data. This mode disappears if coagulation is not included in the simulation. The Upper Haze size distribution shows two lognormal-like distributions overlapping each other, possibly indicating the presence of the two distinct

  15. Venus Upper Atmosphere - Results from the Venus Express Aerobraking Campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, H.

    2015-12-01

    During the last year of operations Venus Express was conducting an experimental aerobraking campaign. The objectives were twofold; firstly, to exercise for the first time the techniques of orbit modification by aerobraking with a European spacecraft, in order to prepare for future scientific ESA missions, and secondly, to collect information on atmospheric density by direct measurements in an environment difficult to sample with other means. Several of the scientific instruments on board Venus Express measured gas abundances of various gasses, including CO2, up to an altitude of 130km, but no reliable measurements could be made of total density and no remote measurements could be done above this altitude. 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. The so called "walk-in" phase started at an altitude of 190 km on 17 May 2014 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. The orbital period was

  16. Tracking Clouds on Venus using Venus Express Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pertzborn, Rosalyn; Limaye, Sanjay; Markiewicz, Wojciech; Jasmin, Tommy; Udgaonkar, Nishant

    2014-05-01

    In the US, a growing emphasis has been placed on the development of inclusive and authentic educational experiences which promote active participation by the K-12 learning community as well as the general public in NASA's earth and space science research activities. In the face of growing national and international budgetary constraints which present major challenges across all scientific research organizations around the world, the need for scientific communities to dramatically improve strategies for effective public engagement experiences, demonstrating the relevance of earth and space science research contributions to the citizenry, have become paramount. This presentation will provide an introduction to the online Venus Express Cloud tracking applet, an overview of feedback from educational users based on classroom/pilot implementation efforts, as well as the concept's potential viability for the promotion of expanded public participation in the analysis of data in future planetary exploration and research activities, nationally and internationally. Acknowledgements: We wish to acknowledge the contributions of Mr. Nishant Udgaonkar, a summer intern with the S.N. Bose Scholars Program, sponsored by the Science and Engineering Board, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, the Indo-U.S. Science and Technology Forum, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. We also wish to acknowledge the Space Science and Engineering Center as well as NASA for supporting this project.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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,

  1. Magnetotellurics at Venus: What Venus Express and Pioneer Venus Tell Us about the Possibility of Electromagnetic Sounding of the Venus Crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russell, Christopher T.; Zhang, Tielong L.; Baumjohann, Wolfgang; Luhmann, Janet G.; Villarreal, Michaela; Chi, Peter J.

    2016-04-01

    In late 2014, the Venus Express mission was allowed to drop its periapsis altitude into the Venus atmosphere, sufficiently low to penetrate below the maximum electron density of the ionosphere into the neutral atmosphere below. In this paper, we examine the observations in this region and assess if such observations could be used to sound the interior electrical conductivity of Venus. We conclude that the fluctuating field would only be useful for sounding with landers on the surface. However, it might be possible to sound the core using the draped magnetic field, an essentially static signature.

  2. Progress towards a post-Venus Express Clouds & Haze reference model for Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcq, Emmanuel; Belyaev, Denis; Wilson, Colin; Wilquet, Valérie; Luginin, Mikhail

    2016-07-01

    With the end of Venus Express in 2014, the focus of the scientific community has gradually moved from the study of Venus Express mono-instrumental data sets to cross-instrumental studies involving pure modelization as well. This is especially true for the clouds and hazes that surround most of the planet between 48 and 70 km. They play a major role at the crossroads of various atmospheric processes among which the radiative budget as well as the dynamical and chemical coupling between the lower and upper atmosphere. In order to support such efforts, ISSI has supported from 2013 to 2015 a "Clouds & Hazes of Venus" scientific team involving Venus Express and ground-based observers as well as microphysical modelers. Together, they compared their results in order to achieve a more unified and consistent view of Venus' clouds and hazes, taking into account its spatial and temporal variability more in detail than previously available VIRA-1 and 2 cloud models. We will review the individual data sets and models that have been used, and then present our strategy towards a unified cloud model. We will first make available some observable parameters to the wider community through a web-based repository. Our future steps will involve more advanced techniques (data assimilation) in order to achieve our objective of a unified Venus clouds & haze model that encompasses its various variabilities as well as possible.

  3. 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

  4. Results from Four Years of Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svedhem, Hakan; Titov, D.; Taylor, F.

    2010-10-01

    Since arriving at Venus in April 2006 Venus Express has provided a wealth of information on a large variety of topics on the atmosphere, surface and plasma environment of the planet. The atmosphere in the southern hemisphere has been studied in detail by three instruments dedicated to atmospheric investigations, from the near IR to the UV and additional information has been derived from radio science measurements. The structure and composition of the atmosphere has been mapped in three dimensions from 40 km to 140 km altitude. Significant temporal and spatial variations have been found, both in composition, density and temperature. Imaging in the UV has revealed strong latitudinal variations and significant temporal changes in the global cloud top morphology as well as identification of various types of waves in the cloud layer. The cloud top altitude varies from about 72 km in the low and middle latitudes to about 64 km in the polar region, marking vast polar depressions, likely a result of the Hadley-type meridional circulation. A large amount of data on the atmospheric circulation has been collected and results include maps of wind speeds at different altitudes and movies of the dynamics of the southern polar vortex. A surface temperature map and an emissivity map of the full southern hemisphere have been constructed from IR images in the spectral windows. By correlating these results and the Magellan radar images and gravity data, regions of young unweathered surfaces likely due to recent volcanism have been identified. The induced magnetosphere with its boundaries and the escape of planetary matter have been characterized by a magnetometer and an energetic particle instrument, and escape rates of hydrogen, oxygen and helium have been determined.A decision to extend the mission until end 2014 is expected at the end of this year.

  5. Venus Express Measurement of ULF and ELF Signals in the Venus Ionosphere: Evidence for Extensive Electrical Activity in the Venus Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, R.; Russell, C. T.; Leinweber, H.; Zhang, T.

    2013-05-01

    Even though the surface of Venus is currently very dry, the atmosphere has extensive cloud cover. These clouds contain sulfuric acid particles that have properties sufficiently similar to water-ice that they would be expected to become charged, as in terrestrial clouds. Also the nitric oxide content of the Venus atmosphere, which is formed by lightning on Earth is similar to the terrestrial values. Thus it is not surprising that numerous manifestations of lightning on Venus have been reported. In this paper we use the Venus Express magnetic measurements to extend our understanding of Venus lightning. The gradiometer magnetometer configuration installed on Venus Express allows the cleaning of the data up to 6 KHz. We exploit these data in the second year of operation to add statistics to our existing data base. We show how ULF and ELF signals appear to reach the spacecraft via different paths but could have the same physical cause: electrical discharges in the Venus ionosphere.

  6. Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fegley, B., Jr.

    Venus is Earth's nearest planetary neighbor and has fascinated mankind since the dawn of history. Venus' clouds reflect most of the sunlight shining on the planet and make it the brightest object in the sky after the Sun and Moon. Venus is visible with the naked eye as an evening star until a few hours after sunset or as a morning star shortly before sunrise. Many ancient civilizations observed and worshipped Venus, which had a different name in each society, for example, Ishtar to the Babylonians, Aphrodite to the Greeks, Tai'pei to the Chinese, and Venus to the Romans. Venus has continued to play an important role in myth, literature, and science throughout history.

  7. 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…

  8. Dynamics of the Venus upper atmosphere: Outstanding problems and new constraints expected from Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bougher, S. W.; Rafkin, S.; Drossart, P.

    2006-11-01

    A consistent picture of the dynamics of the Venus upper atmosphere from ˜90 to 200 km has begun to emerge [e.g., Bougher, S.W., Alexander, M.J., Mayr, H.G., 1997. Upper Atmosphere Dynamics: Global Circulation and Gravity Waves. Venus II, CH. 2.4. University of Arizona Press, Tucson, pp. 259-292; Lellouch, E., Clancy, T., Crisp, D., Kliore, A., Titov, D., Bougher, S.W., 1997. Monitoring of Mesospheric Structure and Dynamics. Venus II, CH. 3.1. University of Arizona Press, Tucson, pp. 295-324]. The large-scale circulation of the Venus upper atmosphere (upper mesosphere and thermosphere) can be decomposed into two distinct flow patterns: (1) a relatively stable subsolar-to-antisolar (SS-AS) circulation cell driven by solar heating, and (2) a highly variable retrograde superrotating zonal (RSZ) flow. Wave-like perturbations have also been observed. However, the processes responsible for maintaining (and driving variations in) these SS-AS and RSZ winds are not well understood. Variations in winds are thought to result from gravity wave breaking and subsequent momentum and energy deposition in the upper atmosphere [Alexander, M.J., 1992. A mechanism for the Venus thermospheric superrotation. Geophys. Res. Lett. 19, 2207-2210; Zhang, S., Bougher, S.W., Alexander, M.J., 1996. The impact of gravity waves on the Venus thermosphere and O2 IR nightglow. J. Geophys. Res. 101, 23195-23205]. However, existing data sets are limited in their spatial and temporal coverage, thereby restricting our understanding of these changing circulation patterns. One of the major goals of the Venus Express (VEX) mission is focused upon increasing our understanding of the circulation and dynamical processes of the Venus atmosphere up to the exobase [Titov, D.V., Lellouch, E., Taylor, F.W., 2001. Venus Express: Response to ESA's call for ideas for the re-use of the Mars Express platform. Proposal to European Space Agency, 1-74]. Several VEX instruments are slated to obtain remote measurements

  9. Densities and temperatures in the Venus mesosphere and lower thermosphere retrieved from SOIR on board Venus Express: Carbon dioxide measurements at the Venus terminator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahieux, A.; Vandaele, A. C.; Robert, S.; Wilquet, V.; Drummond, R.; Montmessin, F.; Bertaux, J. L.

    2012-07-01

    SOIR is a high-resolution spectrometer flying on board the ESA Venus Express mission. It performs solar occultations of the Venus high atmosphere, and so defines unique vertical profiles of many of the Venus key species. In this paper, we focus on the Venus main constituent, carbon dioxide. We explain how the temperature, the total density, and the total pressure are derived from the observed CO2 density vertical profiles. A striking permanent temperature minimum at 125 km is observed. The data set is processed in order to obtain a Venus Atmosphere from SOIR measurements at the Terminator (VAST) compilation for different latitude regions and extending from 70 up to 170 km in altitude. The results are compared to many literature results obtained from ground-based observations, previous missions, and the Venus Express mission. The homopause altitude is also determined.

  10. 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

  11. Coordinated Hubble Space Telescope and Venus Express Observations of Venus' upper cloud deck

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jessup, Kandis Lea; Marcq, Emmanuel; Mills, Franklin; Mahieux, Arnaud; Limaye, Sanjay; Wilson, Colin; Allen, Mark; Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Markiewicz, Wojciech; Roman, Tony; Vandaele, Ann-Carine; Wilquet, Valerie; Yung, Yuk

    2015-09-01

    Hubble Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (HST/STIS) UV observations of Venus' upper cloud tops were obtained between 20N and 40S latitude on December 28, 2010; January 22, 2011 and January 27, 2011 in coordination with the Venus Express (VEx) mission. The high spectral (0.27 nm) and spatial (40-60 km/pixel) resolution HST/STIS data provide the first direct and simultaneous record of the latitude and local time distribution of Venus' 70-80 km SO and SO2 (SOx) gas density on Venus' morning quadrant. These data were obtained simultaneously with (a) VEx/SOIR occultation and/or ground-based James Clerk Maxwell Telescope sub-mm observations that record respectively, Venus' near-terminator SO2 and dayside SOx vertical profiles between ∼75 and 100 km; and (b) 0.36 μm VEx/VMC images of Venus' cloud-tops. Updating the (Marcq, E. et al. [2011]. Icarus 211, 58-69) radiative transfer model SO2 gas column densities of ∼2-10 μm-atm and ∼0.4-1.8 μm-atm are retrieved from the December 2010 and January 2011 HST observations, respectively on Venus' dayside (i.e., at solar zenith angles (SZA) < 60°); SO gas column densities of 0.1-0.11 μm-atm, 0.03-0.31 μm-atm and 0.01-0.13 μm-atm are also retrieved from the respective December 28, 2010, January 22, 2011 and January 27, 2011 HST observations. A decline in the observed low-latitude 0.24 and 0.36 μm cloud top brightness paralleled the declining SOx gas densities. On December 28, 2010 SO2 VMR values ∼280-290 ppb are retrieved between 74 and 81 km from the HST and SOIR data obtained near Venus' morning terminator (at SZAs equal to 70° and 90°, respectively); these values are 10× higher than the HST-retrieved January 2011 near terminator values. Thus, the cloud top SO2 gas abundance declined at all local times between the three HST observing dates. On all dates the average dayside SO2/SO ratio inferred from HST between 70 and 80 km is higher than that inferred from the sub-mm the JCMT data above 84 km confirming that

  12. The Venus Neutral Atmosphere from the Radio Science Experiment VeRa on Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2008-12-01

    The Venus Express Radio Science Experiment VeRa is sounding the Venus neutral atmosphere and ionosphere using the spacecraft radio subsystem in the oneway radio link mode at X-band (8.4 GHz) and S- band (2.3 GHz). An Ultrastable Oscillator (USO) provides a high quality onboard frequency reference source for the derivation of electron density profiles in the ionosphere and profiles of pressure, temperature and neutral number density of the neutral atmosphere. Radial profiles of neutral number density derived from the occultations cover the altitude range 40 to 90 km, which are converted to vertical profiles of temperature and pressure. The polar orbit of Venus Express provides the opportunity to study the atmosphere at all planetocentric latitudes under varying illumination conditions. Five occultation seasons could be covered so far during the Venus Express mission resulting in a data set of more than 150 profiles of the neutral atmosphere. The thermal structure is investigated with regard to the latitudinal and temporal variability. A distinct cold collar region could be observed on both hemispheres. The tropopause altitude increases in this latitude region while the tropopause temperature shows a strong decrease. Profiles of static stability are found to be latitude-dependent and nearly adiabatic in the middle cloud region.

  13. 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 ~ 1μm 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 ~ 0.25μm, 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 τh is increasing with increasing latitude, in

  14. Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fegley, B., Jr.

    2003-12-01

    Venus is Earth's nearest planetary neighbor, and has fascinated mankind since the dawn of history. Venus' clouds reflect most of the sunlight shining on the planet and make it the brightest object in the sky after the Sun and Moon. Venus is visible with the naked eye as an evening star until a few hours after sunset, or as a morning star shortly before sunrise. Many ancient civilizations observed and worshipped Venus, which had a different name in each society, e.g., Ishtar to the Babylonians, Aphrodite to the Greeks, Tai'pei to the Chinese, and Venus to the Romans (Hunt and Moore, 1982). Venus has continued to play an important role in myth, literature, and science throughout history. In the early seventeenth century, Galileo's observations of the phases of Venus showed that the geocentric (Ptolemaic) model of the solar system was wrong and that the heliocentric (Copernican) model was correct. About a century later, Edmund Halley proposed that the distance from the Earth to the Sun (which was then unknown and is defined as one astronomical unit, AU) could be measured by observing transits of Venus across the Sun. These transits occur in pairs separated by eight years at intervals of 105.5 yr and 121.5 yr in an overall cycle of 243 yr, e.g., June 6, 1761, June 3, 1769; December 9, 1874, December 6, 1882, June 8, 2004, June 6, 2012, December 11, 2117, and December 8, 2125. The first attempted measurements of the astronomical unit during the 1761 transit were unsuccessful. However, several observers reported a halo around Venus as it entered and exited the Sun's disk. Thomas Bergman in Uppsala and Mikhail Lomonosov in St. Petersburg, independently speculated that the halo was due to an atmosphere on Venus. Eight years later observations of the 1769 solar transit (including those made by Captain Cook's expedition to Tahiti) gave a value of 1 AU=153 million kilometers, ~2.3% larger than the actual size (149.6 million kilometers) of the astronomical unit (Woolf, 1959

  15. O+ pickup ions outside of Venus' bow shock: Venus Express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Yong; Fraenz, Markus; Dubinin, Eduard; Zhang, Tielong; Jarvinen, Riku; Wan, Weixing; Kallio, Esa; Collinson, Glyn; Barabash, Stars; Norbert, Krupp; Woch, Joachim; Lundin, Rickard; delva, Magda

    2013-04-01

    Pickup ions are ions of planetary origin that become assimilated into the solar wind flow through their interaction with the solar wind magnetic and electric field. The speed of pickup ions varies between zero and twice the underlying plasma flow component perpendicular to magnetic field vector. For the unmagnetized planet Venus and Mars, oxygen (O+) pickup ions are known to be important because they can modify the global configuration of planetary plasma environment and significantly contribute to the atmospheric O+ loss [1]. Since the kinetic energy of an O+ pickup ion can reach 64 times that of a co-moving proton, an instrument must be able to measure O+ ions with energy of at least tens of keV to investigate the O+ pickup ion distribution from planetary ionosphere to solar wind. The in-situ observations and simulations at Mars have shown that the energy of O+ pickup ions can be 55-72 keV outside of the bow shock [2]. For Venus case, the plasma analyzer (OPA) onboard Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO), which was designed for solar wind monitoring, has an 8 keV energy limit for O+ detection and the limited sampling and data rate [3]. Therefore, OPA can only measure the O+ pickup ions in the sheath flow or inside the induced magnetosphere where the speed of ambient plasma flow is significantly lower than that of the unshocked solar wind outside of the bow shock. In addition, Galileo also did not capture O+ outside bowshock during its 1-hour Venus flyby though its plasma instrument had ability to cover the energy band of O+ pickup ions [4]. The Ion Mass Analyzer (IMA), included in the Analyzer of Space Plasma and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) package on board Venus Express (VEX), determines the composition, energy, and angular distribution of ions in the energy range ~10 eV/q to 30 keV/q. Note that an O+ ion moving at the typical solar wind speed 400 km/s has kinetic energy 13.4 keV. Therefore, IMA has ability to measure the O+ pickup ions outside of Venus' bow shock. We

  16. Rotation period of Venus estimated from Venus Express VIRTIS images and Magellan altimetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller, N. T.; Helbert, J.; Erard, S.; Piccioni, G.; Drossart, P.

    2012-02-01

    The 1.02 μm wavelength thermal emission of the nightside of Venus is strongly anti-correlated to the elevation of the surface. The VIRTIS instrument on Venus Express has mapped this emission and therefore gives evidence for the orientation of Venus between 2006 and 2008. The Magellan mission provided a global altimetry data set recorded between 1990 and 1992. Comparison of these two data sets reveals a deviation in longitude indicating that the rotation of the planet is not fully described by the orientation model recommended by the IAU. This deviation is sufficiently large to affect estimates of surface emissivity from infrared imaging. A revised period of rotation of Venus of 243.023 ± 0.002 d aligns the two data sets. This period of rotation agrees with pre-Magellan estimates but is significantly different from the commonly accepted value of 243.0185 ± 0.0001 d estimated from Magellan radar images. It is possible that this discrepancy stems from a length of day variation with the value of 243.023 ± 0.002 d representing the average of the rotation period over 16 years.

  17. Thermal structure of Venus night-side upper atmosphere from SPICAV/SOIR Venus Express occultations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccialli, Arianna; Mahieux, Arnaud; Belyaev, Denis; Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Fedorova, Anna; Marcq, Emmanuel; Vandaele, Ann C.; Montmessin, Franck; Korablev, Oleg; Wilquet, Valérie

    Venus upper atmosphere (70-170 km altitude) is one of the most intriguing regions on the planet. It corresponds to a transition region characterized by a complex dynamics and circulation: strong retrograde zonal winds dominate the lower mesosphere while a solar-to-antisolar (SSA) circulation driven by a day-to-night temperature gradient can be observed in the upper mesosphere/lower thermosphere (Schubert et al., 2007). CO_2 density and temperature profiles of Venus upper atmosphere have been measured from both ground-based (Clancy et al., 2012; Rengel et al., 2008; Sonnabend et al., 2012) and spacecraft missions (Taylor et al., 1980; Seiff et al., 1980; Zasova et al., 2007). The thermal structure of Venus upper mesosphere/lower thermosphere shows a significant variability both on day-to-day as well as longer timescales. More recently, a layer of warm air has been detected at altitudes of 90-120 km on the nightside both by SPICAV/SOIR (Bertaux et al., 2007; Mahieux et al., 2012) and by ground-based (Rengel et al., 2008) observations. The SPICAV/SOIR (Spectroscopy for the investigation of the characteristics of the atmosphere of Venus) instrument has been operating on board the ESA orbiting platform Venus Express since 2006. In the stellar occultation mode the ultraviolet channel provides CO_2 local density and temperature vertical profiles with a vertical resolution of < 7 km of both the Southern and the Northern hemispheres on the night side (6 pm to 6 am local time). A permanent warm area appears distinctly at the mesopause at about 90 - 100 km of altitude; the temperature then decreases with increasing altitude reaching a minimum value around 125 km. Spatial and temporal changes in the thermal structure have been analyzed. Local time variations dominate the structure of Venus atmosphere at these altitudes: temperatures show an increase of about 20 K on the morning side compared to the evening side. The homopause altitude is also determined; it varies between 119

  18. 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

    2013-09-09

    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.

  19. 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

  20. Composition and chemistry of the Venusian atmosphere after Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcq, Emmanuel

    The ESA/Venus Express orbiter mission is expected to end before the end of this year (2014), and time has come to summarize its results and examine how they changed our view of this planet. Venus Express instruments (especially the spectrometers VIRTIS and SPICAV/SOIR) have been addressing numerous scientific issues since 2006, among which remote sensing of many minor species from the lower troposphere up to the mesosphere at various latitudes and local solar time, often evidencing spatial or temporal variability. In preparation of a new synthesis of our current knowledge about Venusian atmospheric chemistry and composition to be included in the Venus III book (expected to be published in 2015), we shall present an overview of the most significant updates in this domain. A non-exhaustive list of the sub-topics we would like to address is; (1) Lower tropospheric measurements: Venus Express has been able to study in detail most of the thermal infrared windows, yielding extensive night side measurements of some key minor species (CO, OCS, H_2O, HDO, SO_2) (2) Profiles at an unparalleled vertical resolution of many minor species in the lower mesosphere thanks to stellar and solar occultation techniques. (3) Spatial and temporal variability of minor species at various scales, the most striking example being SO_2 above cloud top. (4) New theoretical understanding and modeling of the interplay between the various chemical cycles (carbon, sulfur, halogens) and the condensed phase particulate matter from the clouds and hazes, based on the newest available observational constraints from Venus Express and ground-based telescopes.

  1. Analysis of Venusian Zonal Winds Using Venus Express Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCabe, Ryan M.; Sayanagi, Kunio M.; Blalock, John J.; Peralta, Javier; Gray, Candace L.; McGouldrick, Kevin; Imamura, Takeshi

    2016-10-01

    We measure the zonal mean wind structure of Venus between 2006 and 2013 in the ultraviolet images captured by the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) onboard the ESA Venus Express spacecraft. Our wind measurements employ the digital two-dimensional Correlation Imaging Velocimetry method to track cloud motions. Our current focus is on understanding the short- and long-term dynamics of Venus's atmospheric superrotation, in which the equatorial atmosphere rotates with a period of approximately 4-5 days (~60 times faster than the solid planet). The Venusian atmospheric superrotation's forcing and maintenance mechanisms remain to be explained. A number of studies have been published on the cloud-tracking wind measurements on Venus, however, those different measurements have not reached a consensus on the temporal evolution of the zonal wind structure (e.g., Kouyama et al 2013, Khatuntsev et al 2013, Patsaeva et al. 2015). Temporal evolution of the zonal wind could reveal the transport of energy and momentum and eventually shed a light on mechanisms that maintain the superrotation. Our first goal is to characterize the temporal dynamics of Venus's zonal wind profile and two-dimensional wind field, in which we will search for equatorial waves (in particular the so-called "Y-feature") that may force the Venusian atmospheric superrotation.Kouyama, T. et al (2013), J. Geophys. Res. Planets, 118, 37-46, doi:10.1029/2011JE004013.Khatuntsev et al. (2013), Icarus, 226, 140-158, doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2013.05.018.Patsaeva,M.V.,et al. (2015), Planetary and Space Science, 113, 100-108, doi:10.1016/j.pss.2015.01.013.

  2. Venus Express Contributions to the Study of Planetary Lightning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russell, C. T.; Hart, R. A.; Zhang, T. L.

    2014-04-01

    Jupiter, and Saturn are expected to generate the electrical potential differences in their clouds sufficient to cause a breakdown in the atmosphere,creating a conducting path for the electric potential to discharge. This high-energy phenomenon creates a hot, high-pressure channel that enables chemical reactions not possible under usual local thermodynamic conditions. Thus it is of some interest to determine if lightning occurs in an atmosphere. While Venus is not usually considered one of the wet planets, lightning has been an object of interest since the Venera landers. It was observed with electromagnetic coils on Venera 11, 12, 13, 14 landers [2]. It was observed with a visible spectrometer on the Venera 9 orbits [1]. It was mapped during solar occultations by the electric antenna on the Pioneer Venus Orbiter [4]. These measurements revealed extensive lightning activity with an electromagnetic energy flux similar to that on Earth. However, the observations were limited in number in the atmosphere and to the nightside from orbit. In order to improve the understanding of Venus lightning, the Venus Express magnetometer was given a 128-Hz sampling rate that could cover much of the ELF frequencies at which lightning could be observed in the weak magnetic fields of the Venus ionosphere [5]. This investigation was immediately successful [3], but mastering the cleaning of the broadband data took several years to accomplish. Furthermore, the high polar latitudes of VEX periapsis were not the ideal locations to conduct the more global survey that was desired. Fortunately, after precessing poleward over the first few years the latitude of periapsis has returned to lower latitudes(Figures 1 and 2) and active electrical storms are now being studied. The charged constituent of the Venus atmosphere need not be water. In fact, we believe it is H2SO4 which polarizes much as water does and which freezes and melts at similar temperatures. If it is H2SO4, we would expect the

  3. High latitude gravity waves at the Venus cloud tops as observed by the Venus Monitoring Camera on board Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccialli, A.; Titov, D. V.; Sanchez-Lavega, A.; Peralta, J.; Shalygina, O.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Svedhem, H.

    2014-01-01

    High resolution images of Venus Northern hemisphere obtained with the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC/VEx) allow studying small-scale dynamical phenomena at the cloud tops (˜62-70 km altitude) including features like wave trains. A systematic visual search of these waves was performed; more than 1500 orbits were analyzed and wave patterns were observed in more than 300 images. Four types of waves were identified in VMC images on the base of their morphology: long, medium, short and irregular type waves. With the aim to characterize the wave types and their possible excitation source, we retrieved wave properties such as location (latitude and longitude), local time, solar zenith angle, packet length and width, orientation, and wavelength of each wave. The long type waves appear as long and narrow straight features extending more than a few hundreds kilometers and with wavelengths between 7 and 17 km. Medium type waves exhibit 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 extend to few hundreds kilometers and are characterized by smaller wavelengths (3-16 km). Irregular wave fields appear to be the result of wave interference. The waves are often identified in all VMC filters and are mostly found in the cold collar region at high latitudes (60-80°N) and are concentrated above Ishtar Terra, a continental size highland that includes the highest mountain belts of the planet. The high speed of the Venus Express spacecraft close to the pericentre does not allow to measure phase speed of waves due to the short temporal interval between image pairs. The lack of information on phase velocities does not allow us to establish with absolute confidence the nature of these waves. However, by comparing the morphology and properties of the wave features observed in VMC images to those seen by previous observations it is reasonable to assume that the waves studied here are

  4. Models of the global cloud structure on Venus derived from Venus Express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barstow, J. K.; Tsang, C. C. C.; Wilson, C. F.; Irwin, P. G. J.; Taylor, F. W.; McGouldrick, K.; Drossart, P.; Piccioni, G.; Tellmann, S.

    2012-02-01

    Spatially-resolved near-infrared spectra from the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) on Venus Express have been used to derive improved models of the vertical structure and global distribution of cloud properties in the southern hemisphere of Venus. VIRTIS achieved the first systematic, global mapping of Venus at wavelengths within transparency windows in the 1.6-2.6 μm range, which are sensitive on the nightside to absorption by the lower and middle cloud layers of thermally-emitted radiation from the hot lower atmosphere ( Taylor, F.W., Crisp, D., Bézard, B. [1997]. Venus II: Geology, Geophysics, Atmosphere, and Solar Wind Environment, pp. 325-351). The cloud model used to interpret the spectra is based on previous work by Pollack et al. (Pollack, J., Dalton, J., Grinspoon, D., Wattson, R., Freedman, R., Crisp, D., Allen, D., Bézard, B., de Bergh, C., Giver, L. [1993]. Icarus 103, 1-42), Grinspoon et al. (Grinspoon, D.H., Pollack, J.B., Sitton, B.R., Carlson, R.W., Kamp, L.W., Baines, K.H., Encrenaz, T., Taylor, F.W. [1993]. Planet. Space Sci. 41, 515-542) and Crisp (Crisp, D. [1986]. Icarus 67, 484-514), 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. Latitudinal variation in the atmospheric temperature structure was incorporated using data from the Venus Radio Science experiment (VeRa). Values are estimated initially using wavelength pairs selected for their unique sensitivity to each parameter, and then validated by comparing measured to calculated spectra over the entire wavelength range, the latter generated using the NEMESIS radiative transfer and retrieval code (Irwin, P.G.J., Teanby, N.A., de Kok, R., Fletcher, L.N., Howett, C.J.A., Tsang, C.C.C., Wilson, C.F., Calcutt, S.B., Nixon, C.A., Parrish, P.D. [2008]. J. Quant

  5. Atomic oxygen distributions in the Venus thermosphere: Comparisons between Venus Express observations and global model simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brecht, A. S.; Bougher, S. W.; Gérard, J.-C.; Soret, L.

    2012-02-01

    Nightglow emissions provide insight into the global thermospheric circulation, specifically in the transition region (˜70-120 km). The O 2 IR nightglow statistical map created from Venus Express (VEx) Visible and InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) observations has been used to deduce a three-dimensional atomic oxygen density map. In this study, the National Center of Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (VTGCM) is utilized to provide a self-consistent global view of the atomic oxygen density distribution. More specifically, the VTGCM reproduces a 2D nightside atomic oxygen density map and vertical profiles across the nightside, which are compared to the VEx atomic oxygen density map. Both the simulated map and vertical profiles are in close agreement with VEx observations within a ˜30° contour of the anti-solar point. The quality of agreement decreases past ˜30°. This discrepancy implies the employment of Rayleigh friction within the VTGCM may be an over-simplification for representing wave drag effects on the local time variation of global winds. Nevertheless, the simulated atomic oxygen vertical profiles are comparable with the VEx profiles above 90 km, which is consistent with similar O 2 ( 1Δ) IR nightglow intensities. The VTGCM simulations demonstrate the importance of low altitude trace species as a loss for atomic oxygen below 95 km. The agreement between simulations and observations provides confidence in the validity of the simulated mean global thermospheric circulation pattern in the lower thermosphere.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2009-06-01

    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 MGN observations were conducted using a linearly polarized wave, canted at 45° with respect to the plane of incidence and radiated by the MGN synthetic aperture radar antenna toward the specularly reflecting region of the mean planetary surface. In 2006 similar experiments were conducted using 13 cm circularly polarized transmissions from Venus Express (VEX). The VEX signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) was lower than that of MGN, but elevated ∣$\\varepsilon$∣ has been inferred broadly over Maxwell Montes. A quasi-specular echo was detected near Cleopatra but with insufficient SNR to address the question of conductivity. An early failure of the VEX 13 cm radio system precludes further measurements with VEX.

  7. Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejections Observed by MESSENGER and Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Good, S. W.; Forsyth, R. J.

    2016-01-01

    Interplanetary coronal mass ejections (ICMEs) observed by the MESSENGER and Venus Express spacecraft have been catalogued and analysed. The ICMEs were identified by a relatively smooth rotation of the magnetic field direction consistent with a flux rope structure, coinciding with a relatively enhanced magnetic field strength. A total of 35 ICMEs were found in the surveyed MESSENGER data (primarily from March 2007 to April 2012), and 84 ICMEs in the surveyed Venus Express data (from May 2006 to December 2013). The ICME flux rope configurations have been determined. Ropes with northward leading edges were about four times more common than ropes with southward leading edges, in agreement with a previously established solar cycle dependence. Ropes with low inclinations to the solar equatorial plane were about four times more common than ropes with high inclinations, possibly an observational effect. Left- and right-handed ropes were observed in almost equal numbers. In addition, data from MESSENGER, Venus Express, STEREO-A, STEREO-B and ACE were examined for multipoint signatures of the catalogued ICMEs. For spacecraft separations below 15° in heliocentric longitude, the second spacecraft observed the ICME flux rope in 82 % of cases; this percentage dropped to 49 % for separations between 15 and 30°, to 18 % for separations between 30 and 45°, and to 12 % for separations between 45 and 60°. As the spacecraft separation increased, it became increasingly likely that only the sheath and not the flux rope of the ICME was observed, in agreement with the notion that ICME flux ropes are smaller in longitudinal extent than the shocks or discontinuities that they often drive. Furthermore, this study has identified 23 ICMEs observed by pairs of spacecraft close to radial alignment. A detailed analysis of these events could lead to a better understanding of how ICMEs evolve during propagation.

  8. Water vapor near Venus cloud tops from VIRTIS-H/Venus express observations 2006-2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cottini, V.; Ignatiev, N. I.; Piccioni, G.; Drossart, P.

    2015-08-01

    This work aims to give a summary of the water vapor at the cloud top of Venus atmosphere using the complete set of observations made using high spectral resolution channel (-H) of Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS), on board the ESA Venus Express orbiter, to measure the cloud top altitude and the water vapor abundance near this level. An initial analysis of these measurements by Cottini et al. (2012) was limited to data in 140 orbits in the period 2007-2008. These observations were limited to the Northern hemisphere due to observational geometry in this early part of the mission. In the present paper, the analysis is extended to a larger dataset covering the years 2006-2011, significantly improving the latitudinal coverage. Altitude of the cloud tops, corresponding to unit optical depth at a wavelength of 2.5 μm, is equal to 69±1 km at low latitudes, and decreases toward the pole to 62-64 km. The water vapor abundance is equal to 3±1 ppm in low latitudes and it increases reaching a maximum of 5±2 ppm at 70-80° of latitude in both hemispheres, with a sharp drop in the polar regions. This can be explained by the specific dynamics of the atmosphere of Venus affecting the distribution of water vapor such as the transfer of water vapor in the Hadley cell and the dynamic in the polar vortex. The average height of the cloud tops and the H2O near this level are symmetric with respect to the equator. As a function of local solar time, the water vapor shows no particular dependence, and the cloud tops exhibit just a weak maximum around noon. Over 5 years of observations the average values of the cloud top altitude and the water vapor were quite stable in low and middle latitudes, while in high latitudes both quantities in 2009-2011 years are systematically higher than in 2006-2008. Short period variations increasing with latitude are observed, from approximately less than ±1 km for cloud tops and ±1 ppm for water vapor in low latitudes to

  9. Investigation of air temperature on the nightside of Venus derived from VIRTIS-H on board Venus-Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliorini, A.; Grassi, D.; Montabone, L.; Lebonnois, S.; Drossart, P.; Piccioni, G.

    2012-02-01

    We present the spatial distribution of air temperature on Venus' night side, as observed by the high spectral resolution channel of VIRTIS (Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer), or VIRTIS-H, on board the ESA mission Venus Express. The present work extends the investigation of the average thermal fields in the northern hemisphere of Venus, by including the VIRTIS-H data. We show results in the pressure range of 100-4 mbar, which corresponds to the altitude range of 65-80 km. With these new retrievals, we are able to compare the thermal structure of the Venus' mesosphere in both hemispheres. The major thermal features reported in previous investigations, i.e. the cold collar at about 65-70°S latitude, 100 mbar pressure level, and the asymmetry between the evening and morning sides, are confirmed here. By comparing the temperatures retrieved by the VIRTIS spectrometer in the North and South we find that similarities exist between the two hemispheres. Solar thermal tides are clearly visible in the average temperature fields. To interpret the thermal tide signals (otherwise impossible without day site observations), we apply model simulations using the Venus global circulation model Venus GCM (Lebonnois, S., Hourdin, F., Forget, F., Eymet, V., Fournier, R. [2010b]. International Venus Conference, Aussois, 20-26 June 2010) of the Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique (LMD). We suggest that the signal detected at about 60-70° latitude and pressure of 100 mbar is a diurnal component, while those located at equatorial latitudes are semi-diurnal. Other tide-related features are clearly identified in the upper levels of the atmosphere.

  10. 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

    ., 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

  11. Water vapour, clouds, and the UV absorber near the cloud tops of Venus from VIRTIS and VMC / Venus Express data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ignatiev, N. I.; Piccioni, G.; Drossart, P.; Cottini, V.; Markiewicz, W. J.

    2012-09-01

    Observations of the dayside of Venus with VIRTIS [1] and VMC [2] instruments on board Venus Express have been used to measure the cloud top altitude and water vapour abundance near this level and search for their possible correlation with the UV absorption. An extended analysis of these measurements by Cottini et al. [3] was limited by a northern hemisphere due to geometry of observations on first 1000 orbits of the mission. Further measurements significantly improve the latitudinal coverage and demonstrated symmetric behaviour of clouds and water vapour in both hemispheres.

  12. No statistical evidence of lightning in Venus night-side atmosphere from VIRTIS-Venus Express Visible observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardesín Moinelo, A.; Abildgaard, S.; García Muñoz, A.; Piccioni, G.; Grassi, D.

    2016-10-01

    In this study we describe a dedicated analysis of luminous transient events on Venus night side atmosphere with the visible channel of the VIRTIS instrument (280-1100 nm), this being the most comprehensive search of lightning conducted so far with Venus Express data. Our search results in thousands of signal detections, but unfortunately they can be all explained by cosmic rays impinging on the detector, and further statistical analysis shows that all of the events are randomly distributed along the spectral dimension, therefore not showing any clear evidence of signal coming from lightning emission in the Venus atmosphere. This does not exclude the existence of lightning, but imposes some constraints on their occurrence that are important for future research.

  13. The Structure of the Venus Neutral Atmosphere from the Radio Science Experiment VeRa on Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tellmann, S. A.; Häusler, B.; Pätzold, M.; Bird, M. K.; Tyler, G. L.

    2007-12-01

    The Venus Express Radio Science Experiment VeRa is sounding the Venus neutral atmosphere and ionosphere using the spacecraft radio subsystem in the oneway radio link mode. An Ultrastable Oscillator (USO) provides a high quality onboard frequency reference source for the derivation of electron density profiles in the ionosphere and profiles of pressure, temperature and neutral number density of the neutral atmosphere. The measurement configuration allows an altitude resolution of only a few hundred metres from the cloud deck at about 40 km to approximately 100 km. Three occultation seasons could be covered in the first two years of the Venus Express mission resulting in a data set of about 140 profiles of the neutral atmosphere. The polar orbit of Venus Express provides the opportunity to study the atmosphere at all planetocentric latitudes under varying illumination conditions. Special attention will be given to day-night variations of the thermal structure and the temperature distribution at high polar latitudes on both hemispheres ("cold collar region") and signal absorption effects caused by the H2SO4 vapour.

  14. Ionospheric Modulation of Venus Express Lightning Detection Rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, Richard A.; Russell, Christopher T.; Zhang, Tielong

    2015-11-01

    Venus Express completed its nearly 9 year campaign at Earth’s sister planet in late 2014. During this period the onboard fluxgate magnetometer collected data up to 64 Hz in frequency while near periapsis. This is the expected frequency range for lightning-generated whistler-mode waves at Venus, between the local electron and ion gyrofrequencies. These waves are right-hand circularly polarized and are guided by the local magnetic field. When the Venusian ionopause is low enough in altitude to reside in the collisional region, the interplanetary magnetic field can get carried down with the ions and magnetize the lower ionosphere. As the field travels towards the terminator it gains a radial component, enabling whistlers to reach higher altitudes and be detected by the spacecraft. The mission covered almost an entire solar cycle and frequently observed a magnetized ionosphere during the solar minimum phase when the ionosphere was weak due to reduced incident EUV. Detection was most common at 250 km altitude where the waves travel more slowly due to reduced ionospheric density. In response they increase in amplitude in order to conserve magnetic energy flux. Here, we examine the changes in the ionospheric properties associated with the evolution of the solar cycle and the rate of detection of these lightning-generated signals.

  15. Characterizing the V1 layer in the Venus ionosphere using VeRa observations from Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girazian, Z.; Withers, P.; Fallows, K.; Tarrh, A.; Paetzold, M.; Tellmann, S.; Haesler, B.

    2013-12-01

    The Venus Radio Science Experiment (VeRa) on the Venus Express spacecraft sounds the Venus atmosphere during Earth occultations to obtain vertical profiles of electron density in the ionosphere. The resultant profiles reveal the vertical structure of the Venus ionosphere from the topside down to below the lower layers (< 115 km). On the dayside, the dominant plasma layer is the V2 layer at ~142 km, which is produced primarily by photoionization of CO2. Embedded on the bottomside of the V2 layer is the less prominent, and much less studied, V1 layer at ~127 km. The V1 layer is also produced by photoionization of CO2, but secondary ionization due to energetic photoelectrons is much more important. Here we investigate properties of the V1 layer using VeRa profiles from 2006 to 2012 during which the Sun went from the deep solar minimum of Solar Cycle 23 to the rising solar activity levels of Solar Cycle 24. We investigate how the peak electron density and peak altitude of the V1 layer depend on solar zenith angle. We also characterize the shapes of the V1 layer and show how they are related to the solar activity level. Solar spectra from the Solar EUV Experiment (SEE) on the Thermosphere Ionosphere Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics (TIMED) spacecraft are used to characterize the shapes of the V1 layer with solar activity.

  16. International Planetary Science Interoperability: The Venus Express Interface Prototype

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanford Bussard, Stephen; Chanover, N.; Huber, L.; Trejo, I.; Hughes, J. S.; Kelly, S.; Guinness, E.; Heather, D.; Salgado, J.; Osuna, P.

    2009-09-01

    NASA's Planetary Data System (PDS) and ESA's Planetary Science Archive (PSA) have successfully demonstrated interoperability between planetary science data archives with the Venus Express (VEX) Interface prototype. Because VEX is an ESA mission, there is no memorandum of understanding to archive the data in the PDS. However, using a common communications protocol and common data standards, VEX mission science data ingested into the PSA can be accessed from a user interface at the Atmospheres Node of the PDS, making the science data accessible globally through two established planetary science data portals. The PSA makes scientific and engineering data from ESA's planetary missions accessible to the worldwide scientific community. The PSA consists of online services incorporating search, preview, download, notification and delivery basket functionality. Mission data included in the archive aside from VEX include data from the Giotto, Mars Express, Smart-1, Huygens, and Rosetta spacecraft and several ground-based cometary observations. All data are compatible to the Planetary Data System data standard. The PDS archives and distributes scientific data from NASA planetary missions, astronomical observations, and laboratory measurements. The PDS is sponsored by NASA's Science Mission Directorate. Its purpose is to ensure the long-term usability of NASA data and to stimulate advanced research. The architecture of the VEX prototype interface leverages components from both the PSA and PDS information system infrastructures, a user interface developed at the New Mexico State University, and the International Planetary Data Alliance (IPDA) Planetary Data Access Protocol (PDAP). The VEX Interoperability Project was a key project of the IPDA, whose objective is to ensure world-wide access to planetary data regardless of which agency collects and archives the data. A follow-on IPDA project will adapt the VEX Interoperability protocol for access in JAXA to the Venus Climate

  17. Limb Darkening study using Venus nightside infrared spectra from VIRTIS-Venus Express data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Longobardo, Andrea; Palomba, Ernesto; Zinzi, Angelo; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Tsang, Constantine C. C.; Drossart, Pierre

    2012-08-01

    The Limb Darkening (LD) effect consists in an attenuation of the measured radiance at increasing emergence angles, due to the larger portion of the atmosphere traversed by the radiation observed at higher emergence angles. The behaviour of radiance emerging with atmosphere as function of the emergence angle (i.e., the Limb Darkening Function) is related to several atmosphere and cloud properties, e.g., atmospheric opacity, temperature lapse rate, aerosol single scattering albedo, optical depth, cloud particles size, cloud scale height. In addition, the retrieval of the Limb Darkening Function allows the computation of radiances as they would be acquired in Nadir observations, which is an important process of data reduction. In this work Limb Darkening is studied on infrared images of the Venus nightside. The images are provided by the VIRTIS instrument (Visible and InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer) onboard the Venus Express mission. Analysis is performed at wavelengths characterised by emission coming from below the clouds (i.e., 1.03 μm, 1.31 μm, 1.74 μm, 2.30 μm) and from upper clouds (i.e., 3.72 μm, 4.00 μm), respectively. In the first case, the Limb Darkening Function is retrieved at different latitude ranges (-40° to 0°, -50° to -40°, -60° to -50°, -70° to -60°) and different optical depths. To this end, a novel approach is developed, based on a statistical analysis of observed data. This statistical analysis is possible thanks to the very extended dataset provided by the VIRTIS instrument. These empirical Limb Darkening Functions are then compared and interpreted with the aid of radiative transfer models. An agreement between our results and results of synthetic models is found between -60° and 0°, allowing us to consider our approach well validated. Furthermore, by means of a detailed analysis of the LDFs obtained at different latitudes, it is possible to infer a slight increase of the mode3/mode2 density ratio between -60° and -50

  18. Improved algorithm for the transmittance estimation of spectra obtained with SOIR/Venus Express.

    PubMed

    Trompet, Loic; Mahieux, Arnaud; Ristic, Bojan; Robert, Séverine; Wilquet, Valérie; Thomas, Ian R; Vandaele, Ann Carine; Bertaux, Jean-Loup

    2016-11-10

    The Solar Occultation in the InfraRed (SOIR) instrument onboard the ESA Venus Express spacecraft, an infrared spectrometer sensitive from 2.2 to 4.3 μm, probed the atmosphere of Venus from June 2006 until December 2014. During this time, it performed more than 750 solar occultations of the Venus mesosphere and lower thermosphere. A new procedure has been developed for the estimation of the transmittance in order to decrease the number of rejected spectra, to check that the treated spectra are well calibrated, and to improve the quality of the calibrated spectra by reducing the noise and accurately normalizing it to the solar spectrum.

  19. Geologic interpretation of the near-infrared images of the surface taken by the Venus Monitoring Camera, Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilevsky, A. T.; Shalygin, E. V.; Titov, D. V.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Scholten, F.; Roatsch, Th.; Kreslavsky, M. A.; Moroz, L. V.; Ignatiev, N. I.; Fiethe, B.; Osterloh, B.; Michalik, H.

    2012-02-01

    We analyze night-time near-infrared (NIR) thermal emission images of the Venus surface obtained with the 1-μm channel of the Venus Monitoring Camera onboard Venus Express. Comparison with the results of the Magellan radar survey and the model NIR images of the Beta-Phoebe region show that the night-time VMC images provide reliable information on spatial variations of the NIR surface emission. In this paper we consider if tessera terrain has the different NIR emissivity (and thus mineralogic composition) in comparison to the surrounding basaltic plains. This is done through the study of an area SW of Beta Regio where there is a massif of tessera terrain, Chimon-mana Tessera, surrounded by supposedly basaltic plains. Our analysis showed that 1-μm emissivity of tessera surface material is by 15-35% lower than that of relatively fresh supposedly basaltic lavas of plains and volcanic edifices. This is consistent with hypothesis that the tessera material is not basaltic, maybe felsic, that is in agreement with the results of analyses of VEX VIRTIS and Galileo NIMS data. If the felsic nature of venusian tesserae will be confirmed in further studies this may have important implications on geochemical environments in early history of Venus. We have found that the surface materials of plains in the study area are very variegated in their 1-μm emissivity, which probably reflects variability of degree of their chemical weathering. We have also found a possible decrease of the calculated emissivity at the top of Tuulikki Mons volcano which, if real, may be due to different (more felsic?) composition of volcanic products on the volcano summit.

  20. First Results of Venus Express Spacecraft Observations with Wettzell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calves, Guifre Molera; Wagner, Jan; Neidhardt, Alexander; Kronschnabl, Gerhard; Ayucar, Miguel Perez; Cimo, Giuseppe; Pogrebenko, Sergei

    2010-01-01

    The ESA Venus Express spacecraft was observed at X-band with the Wettzell radio telescope in October-December 2009 in the framework of an assessment study of the possible contribution of the European VLBI Network to the upcoming ESA deep space missions. A major goal of these observations was to develop and test the scheduling, data capture, transfer, processing, and analysis pipeline. Recorded data were transferred from Wettzell to Metsahovi for processing, and the processed data were sent from Mets ahovi to JIVE for analysis. A turnover time of 24 hours from observations to analysis results was achieved. The high dynamic range of the detections allowed us to achieve a milliHz level of spectral resolution accuracy and to extract the phase of the spacecraft signal carrier line. Several physical parameters can be determined from these observational results with more observational data collected. Among other important results, the measured phase fluctuations of the carrier line at different time scales can be used to determine the influence of the solar wind plasma density fluctuations on the accuracy of the astrometric VLBI observations.

  1. 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

  2. The evolution of co-orbiting material in the orbit of 2201 Oljato from 1980 to 2012 as deduced from Pioneer Venus Orbiter and Venus Express magnetic records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lai, Hairong; Russell, Christopher T.; Wei, Hanying; Zhang, Tielong

    2014-01-01

    Asteroid 2201 Oljato passed through perihelion inside the orbit of Venus near the time of its conjunction with Venus in 1980, 1983, and 1986. During those three years, many interplanetary field enhancements (IFEs) were observed by the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) in the longitude sector where the orbit of Oljato lies inside Venus' orbit. We attribute IFEs to clouds of fine-scale, possibly highly charged dust picked up by the solar wind after an interplanetary collision between objects in the diameter range of 10-1000 m. We interpret the increase rate in IFEs at PVO in these years as due to material in Oljato's orbit colliding with material in, or near to, Venus' orbital plane and producing a dust-anchored structure in the interplanetary magnetic field. In March 2012, almost 30 yr later, with Venus Express (VEX) now in orbit, the Oljato-Venus geometry is similar to the one in 1980. Here, we compare IFEs detected by VEX and PVO using the same IFE identification criteria. We find an evolution with time of the IFE rate. In contrast to the results in the 1980s, the recent VEX observations reveal that at solar longitudes in which the Oljato orbit is inside that of Venus, the IFE rate is reduced to the level even below the rate seen at solar longitudes where Oljato's orbit is outside that of Venus. This observation implies that Oljato not only lost its co-orbiting material but also disrupted the "target material," with which the co-orbiting material was colliding, near Venus.

  3. High energy particles at Mars and Venus: Phobos-2, Mars Express and Venus Express observations and their interpretation by hybrid model simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKenna-Lawlor, Susan; Kallio, Esa; Fram, Rudy A.; Alho, Markku; Jarvinen, Riku; Dyadechkin, Sergey; Wedlund, Cyril Simon; Zhang, Tielong; Collinson, Glyn A.; Futaana, Yoshifumi

    2013-04-01

    Mars and Venus can both be reached by Solar Energetic Particles (SEPs). Such high energy particles (protons, multiply charged heavy ions, electrons) penetrate the upper atmospheres of Mars and Venus because, in contrast to Earth, these bodies do not have a significant, global, intrinsic magnetic field to exclude them. One especially well documented, complex and prolonged SEP took in place in early 1989 (Solar Cycle 23) when the Phobos-2 spacecraft was orbiting Mars. This spacecraft had a dedicated high energy particle instrument onboard (SLED), which measured particles with energies in the keV range up to a few tens of MeV. There was in addition a magnetometer as well as solar wind plasma detectors onboard which together provided complementary data to support contemporaneous studies of the background SEP environment. Currently, while the Sun is displaying maximum activity (Solar Cycle 24), Mars and Venus are being individually monitored by instrumentation flown onboard the Mars Express (MEX) and Venus Express (VEX) spacecraft. Neither of these spacecraft carry a high energy particle instrument but their Analyzer of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA) experiments (ASPERA-3 on MEX and ASPERA-4 on VEX), can be used to study SEPs integrated over E ≥ ~30 MeV which penetrate the instrument hardware and form background counts in the plasma data. In the present work we present SEP events measured at Mars and Venus based on Phobos-2, 1989 data and on, more recent, MEX and VEX (identified from particle background) observations. We further introduce numerical global SEP simulations of the measured events based on 3-D self-consistent hybrid models (HYB-Mars and HYB-Venus). Through comparing the in situ SEP observations with these simulations, new insights are provided into the properties of the measured SEPs as well as into how their individual planetary bow shocks and magnetospheres affect the characteristics of their ambient Martian and Venusian SEP environments.

  4. Results from VIRTIS on board Venus Express after the end of the mission operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccioni, G.; Drossart, P.; VIRTIS Venus Express Team

    After more than 8 years since the orbit insertion, the Venus Express mission is now at its end of mission operations. VIRTIS aboard the Venus Express spacecraft has addressed a significant amount of scientific results from the surface up to the upper atmosphere, in terms of mapping, composition, structure and dynamics. The VIRTIS instrument consists of two channels: VIRTIS-M, an imaging spectrometer with moderate spectral resolution in the range from 0.25 to 5.2 mu m and VIRTIS-H, a high spectral resolution spectrometer in the range from 2 to 5 mu m co-aligned with the field of view of -M \\citep{Piccioni2007a,Drossart2007a}. The resolution of VIRTIS-M is 2 nm from 0.25 to 1 mu m, and 10 nm from 1 to 5.2 mu m. The resolution of VIRTIS-H is about 2 nm. The atmosphere above the clouds has been observed both on day and night sides, in solar reflection and thermal emission in nadir geometry \\citep{Ignatiev2009, Cottini2012, Peralta2012, Peralta2009}. Limb observations provided O2\\citep{Piccioni2009, Garcia2009a, Gerard2013, Migliorini2013a, Gerard2008, Gerard2009}, OH \\citep{Piccioni2008,Gerard2010,Soret2010,Soret2012}, NO \\citep{Garcia2009b}, CO2 \\citep{Drossart2007b,Lopez-Valverde2011} and CO \\citep{Gilli2009,Gilli2015,Gilli2011} emissions, through nightglow and fluorescence observations. Spectroscopy of the 4-5 mu m range gave access to the cloud structure in the 60-95 km altitude levels \\citep{Irwin2008a,Grassi2014, Grassi2008,Grassi2010,Luz2011}. The deeper atmospheric windows, limited by CO2 and H2O bands were accessible only in thermal emission on the night side. The sounded levels at 1.7 and 2.3 mu m were limited respectively to 30-20 km altitude \\citep{Barstow2012,Bezard2009,Marcq2008a,Satoh2009,Tsang2009, Tsang2010,Tsang2008,Wilson2008,Wilson2009}, while at shorter wavelengths (1.18, 1.10, 1.01, 0.9 and 0.85 mu m), the hot surface of Venus was seen through the scattering clouds \\citep{Mueller2009,Helbert2008,Arnold2008a,Smrekar2010,Mueller2012

  5. Generation of Venus reporter knock-in mice revealed MAGI-2 expression patterns in adult mice.

    PubMed

    Ihara, Kan-ichiro; Nishimura, Tomoki; Fukuda, Tomokazu; Ookura, Tetsuya; Nishimori, Katsuhiko

    2012-01-01

    The membrane-associated guanylate kinase inverted 2 (MAGI-2) protein, which is known to localize at the tight junction of epithelial cells, contains multiple copies of the PDZ and WW domains in its structure. Although the expression pattern of Magi2 mRNA in representative organs has been previously published, its detailed cellular distribution at the histological level remains unknown. Such detailed information would be useful to clarify the biological function of MAGI-2. Here, we report the generation of Venus reporter knock-in mice for Magi2 in which exon 6 of the gene was substituted by the Venus-encoding sequence. We detected the expression of the Venus reporter protein in kidney podocytes from these knock-in mice. We also detected Venus reporter protein expression in spermatids within the testes and within neurons in various regions of the brain. Detection of the reporter protein from these diverse locations indicated the endogenous expression of MAGI-2 in these tissues. Our data suggested a potential function of MAGI-2 in the glomerular filtration process and sperm cell maturation. These data indicate that the Venus reporter knock-in mouse for Magi2 is a useful model for the further study of Magi2 gene function.

  6. Gravity waves study from the nighglow emissions in the Venus upper atmosphere observed by VIRTIS-Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliorini, Alessandra; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Zasova, Ludmila; Shakun, Alexey; Altieri, Francesca; Bellucci, Giancarlo

    The O _{2} nightglow emissions in the infrared spectral range are important features to investigate dynamics at the mesospheric altitudes, in the Venus atmosphere. We analyzed the profiles obtained at limb by the VIRTIS spectrometer on board the Venus Express mission, acquired during the mission period from 2006-07-05 to 2008-08-15. Several profiles present double peaked structures that can be interpreted as due to gravity waves. In analogy to the Earth’s and Mars cases, we use a well-known theory to model the O _{2} nightglow emissions affected by gravity waves propagation, in order to support this thesis and derive the waves properties. In the present work, we discus the gravity waves characteristics, namely vertical wavelength and wave amplitude, with respect to local time and latitude. The method is applied to about 30 profiles showing double peaked structures. On average, the double peaked profiles are compatible with the effects of gravity waves with a vertical wavelength ranging between 7 and 16 km, and wave amplitude of 3-14%. A comparison with gravity waves properties in the Mars and Earth’s atmospheres, using the same theory, is also proposed.

  7. In-flight performance and calibration of SPICAV SOIR onboard Venus Express.

    PubMed

    Mahieux, Arnaud; Berkenbosch, Sophie; Clairquin, Roland; Fussen, Didier; Mateshvili, Nina; Neefs, Eddy; Nevejans, Dennis; Ristic, Bojan; Vandaele, Ann Carine; Wilquet, Valérie; Belyaev, Denis; Fedorova, Anna; Korablev, Oleg; Villard, Eric; Montmessin, Franck; Bertaux, Jean-Loup

    2008-05-01

    Solar occultation in the infrared, part of the Spectoscopy for Investigation of Characteristics of the Atmosphere of Venus (SPICAV) instrument onboard Venus Express, combines an echelle grating spectrometer with an acousto-optic tunable filter (AOTF). It performs solar occultation measurements in the IR region at high spectral resolution. The wavelength range probed allows a detailed chemical inventory of Venus's atmosphere above the cloud layer, highlighting the vertical distribution of gases. A general description of the instrument and its in-flight performance is given. Different calibrations and data corrections are investigated, in particular the dark current and thermal background, the nonlinearity and pixel-to-pixel variability of the detector, the sensitivity of the instrument, the AOTF properties, and the spectral calibration and resolution.

  8. A updated view of the Venusian cloud system: synthesis of Venus Express results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Satoh, Takehiko

    Physics and chemistry of planet-covering clouds of Venus are the major targets of ESA's Venus Express. The planet is entirely covered by layers of cloud and haze (amount to a total optical thickness of few tens) which are thought to control planet's heat balance, climate, and atmospheric dynamics. Until the time of Pioneer Venus, our knowledge was limited only to "remotely sensible" upper cloud/haze layer or to a few locations where descent probes made direct measurements in the atmosphere. The situation, however, has changed since discovery of so-called atmospheric "windows" (Allen and Crawford, 1984) in the infrared spectrum of Venus. The "windows" are wavelengths of relatively weak CO2 absorption (1.74 and 2.3 µm, for example) at which infrared radiation originating from deeper levels of Venus atmosphere can escape to the space through the dense clouds and atmosphere. Usefulness of observations in these windows to remotely sense the deeper atmosphere was demonstrated during Galileo's flyby (Carlson et al., 1991) although the data were not many. Venus Express is the first spacecraft to fully utilize these windows. VIRTIS utilizes near-infrared windows (distributed in 1 2.4-µm range) to sense clouds and gases in the middle to lower atmosphere. The VIRTIS data have revealed great variability of cloud opacity: particle size and number density of aerosols have been derived with higher accuracy and greater spatial coverage than previous studies. The vertical extent of lower cloud layer (the source of main opacity at 1.74 µm) is found to show discontinuous change at higher latitudes near so-called cold polar collar. SPICAV/SOIR, sensitive to upper haze and near cloud top as it utilizes a lay of light (from a star or the Sun) which grazes the atmosphere, also has found semi-periodic change in aerosol opacity with a large amplitude. Ultraviolet images acquired with VMC show fine structures of clouds (patches, cells, and waves) and their rapid changes. A remarkable

  9. 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.

  10. Mars Express and Venus Express Data Retention In-Flight Performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebrédonchel, J.; Rombeck, F.-J.

    2007-08-01

    Venus, Mars and Earth, three out of the four inner or 'rocky' planets of the Solar System, have a lot in common: a solid surface you could walk on, a comparable surface composition, an atmosphere and a weather system. European Space Agency (ESA) Mars Express (MEx) and Venus Express (VEx) pioneer scientific missions aim at exploring these two neighbours of the Earth, in order to enrich our knowledge of our planet and of the Solar System. Both projects are based on the same spacecraft bus, and in particular on 'sister' Solid State Mass Memory (SSMM) units, in charge of the acquisition, storage and retrieval of all on board data, relevant both to the platform and to the instruments. This paper recalls the common SSMM design and the inner fault tolerant memory array module architecture based on Computer Off The Shelf (COTS) Samsung 64 Mbit Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory (SDRAM) chips, and presents the comparative in-flight data retention performance for both MEx and Vex units, since their respective June 2003 and November 2005 launches. Both units have shown to successfully withstand the radiative deep space environment, including during the outstanding October 2003 solar flare, and no uncorrectable data corruption was ever reported. Beyond this stable retention performance over time, the memory scrubbing correctable error accounting feedback allows evaluating the deep space Single Event Upset (SEU) rates, to be compared with the theoretical SSMM radiation assessment as well as with other previous missions in-flight qualitative reference performance records, and finally enables to derive a couple of recommendations from the lessons' learnt.

  11. The Surface of Venus and Implications for its Geological and Geodynamical Evolution: The View Before Venus Express and Outstanding Questions for the Future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Head, J. W.; Ivanov, M. A.; Basilevsky, A. T.

    2008-12-01

    thickness variations and mantle convection patterns. The relationships of major elements of global topography and the sequence of events in the observed geological history (as recorded by major geologic units and structures) suggest that much of the current long-wavelength topography of Venus (tessera highlands and lowlands with regional plains) may have formed prior to emplacement of regional plains and been preserved since that time. These observations may favor evolutionary geodynamic models that are characterized by changes in geological style and rates, and may involve non-linear heat loss mechanisms that could have profound influence on the atmosphere. Although the observed surface of Venus dates from relatively recent planetary history, comparative planetology permits inferences to be made about the major stages in the earlier history of Venus. The evolution of the understanding of the surface from early speculations to present observations and interpretations provides an important context for: 1) establishing the relationships of the surface of Venus to the nature of the atmosphere and its evolution as assessed by Venus Express, 2) the comparison of the geological features and history of Venus relative to the Moon, Mars, Mercury and the Earth, and 3) defining the major outstanding problems and questions to be addressed by future experiments and missions to Venus.

  12. Dayside temperatures in the Venus upper atmosphere from Venus Express/VIRTIS nadir measurements at 4.3 μm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peralta, J.; López-Valverde, M. A.; Gilli, G.; Piccialli, A.

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we analysed nadir observations of atmospheric infrared emissions carried out by VIRTIS, a high-resolution spectrometer on board the European spacecraft Venus Express. We focused on the ro-vibrational band of CO2 at 4.3 μm on the dayside, whose fluorescence originates in the Venus upper mesosphere and above. This is the first time that a systematic sounding of these non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) emissions has been carried out in Venus using this geometry. As many as 143,218 spectra have been analysed on the dayside during the period 14/05/2006 to 14/09/2009. We designed an inversion method to obtain the atmospheric temperature from these non-thermal observations, including a NLTE line-by-line forward model and a pre-computed set of spectra for a set of thermal structures and illumination conditions. Our measurements sound a broad region of the upper mesosphere and lower thermosphere of Venus ranging from 10-2-10-5 mb (which in the Venus International Reference Atmosphere, VIRA, is approximately 100-150 km during the daytime) and show a maximum around 195 ± 10 K in the subsolar region, decreasing with latitude and local time towards the terminator. This is in qualitative agreement with predictions by a Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (VTGCM) after a proper averaging of altitudes for meaningful comparisons, although our temperatures are colder than the model by about 25 K throughout. We estimate a thermal gradient of about 35 K between the subsolar and antisolar points when comparing our data with nightside temperatures measured at similar altitudes by SPICAV, another instrument on Venus Express (VEx). Our data show a stable temperature structure through five years of measurements, but we also found episodes of strong heating/cooling to occur in the subsolar region of less than two days. The table with numerical data and averaged temperatures displayed in Fig. 7A provided as a CSV data file is only available at the CDS via

  13. Comparison of Thermal Structure Results from Venus Express and Ground Based Observations since Vira

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay

    2016-07-01

    An international team was formed in 2013 through the International Space Studies Institute (Bern, Switzerland) to compare recent results of the Venus atmospheric thermal structure from spacecraft and ground based observations made since the Venus International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA) was developed (Kliore et al., 1985, Keating et al., 1985). Five experiments on European Space Agency's Venus Express orbiter mission have yielded results on the atmospheric structure during is operational life (April 2006 - November 2014). Three of these were from occultation methods: at near infrared wavelengths from solar occultations, (SOIR, 70 - 170 km), at ultraviolet wavelengths from stellar occultations (SPICAV, 90-140 km), and occultation of the VEx-Earth radio signal (VeRa, 40-90 km). In-situ drag measurements from three different techniques (accelerometry, torque, and radio tracking, 130 - 200 km) were also obtained using the spacecraft itself while passive infrared remote sensing was used by the VIRTIS experiment (70 - 120 km). The only new data in the -40-70 km altitude range are from radio occultation, as no new profiles of the deep atmosphere have been obtained since the VeGa 2 lander measurements in 1985 (not included in VIRA). Some selected ground based results available to the team were also considered by team in the inter comparisons. The temperature structure in the lower thermosphere from disk resolved ground based observations (except for one ground based investigation), is generally consistent with the Venus Express results. These experiments sampled at different periods, at different locations and at different local times and have different vertical and horizontal resolution and coverage. The data were therefore binned in latitude and local time bins and compared, ignoring temporal variations over the life time of the Venus Express mission and assumed north-south symmetry. Alternating warm and cooler layers are present in the 120-160 altitude range in results

  14. [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.

  15. Investigation of planetary space weather effects at Venus observed by the ASPERA-4 particle analyzer and the magnetometer flying onboard of Venus Express Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vech, Daniel; Szego, Karoly; Opitz, Andrea; Fraenz, Markus

    2014-05-01

    In this study we identified several coronal mass-ejections (CME's) interacting with the induced magnetosphere of Venus during 2010 and 2011 using STEREO observations and ENLIL simulations. Our purpose is to analyze the response of the induced magnetosphere and the ionosphere to these extreme conditions based on measurements made by the ASPERA-4 and MAG instruments on Venus Express. The parameters of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) during these solar events are also discussed. Previously we investigated the effects of the May 2007 solar eruption on the induced magnetosphere of Venus in a poster publication (EPSC2013-266). During the analyzed solar event large scale rotation of the interplanetary magnetic field was observed and in the polar region, the altitude where planetary ions were present decreased compared to the average cases. Polarity reversal of the induced magnetosphere also took place, similar to the cases discussed by Edberg et. al (2011). Several CME's interacted with Venus in November 2011. One of the largest lifted off on 3rd November and reached Venus on 5th November. The solar wind parameters showed large variations: the velocity peaked over 900 km/s, and the magnitude of the IMF suddenly increased threefold. The magnetic field reached 240 nT inside the induced magnetosphere, which is extremely high compared to normal conditions. The heavy ion density measured by VEX peaked over 1000 1/cm3 providing clear evidence for ionosphere crossing. Due to the orbit parameters it is possible to investigate the magnetic structure in the tail. The other selected solar eruptions caused similar changes including the sudden increase in the solar wind velocity and magnitude of the magnetic field in the magnetic barrier but due to the different orbital parameters other regions of the induced magnetosphere were investigated as well. In conclusion the observed planetary space weather effects include that in the shocked solar wind we observed Increased velocity

  16. Atmospheric, Ionospheric, Surface and Radio Propagation Studies With The Venus Express Radio Science Experiment Vera.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Häusler, B.; Pätzold, M.; Bird, M. K.; Treumann, R. A.; Simpson, R. A.; Hinson, D.

    The Venus Radio Science experiment (VeRa) onboard the proposed Venus Express Orbiter will make use of the spacecraft radio carrier signals at X/S-band and an ultrastable oscillator reference frequency source (USO, Allan deviation 10 ­13 ) integrated into the onboard transponder system. VeRa will perform : radio sounding of the Venusian ionosphere from 80 km up to the ionopause (300km to 600 km), radio sounding of the neutral atmosphere from the cloud deck (35km to 40 km) to 100 km altitude, measurements of dielectric properties and roughness of the Venusian surface, studies of the propagation of radio waves in the inner solar system at superior and inferior solar conjunctions. We shall discuss the experimental methods (spacecraft occultation and bistatic radar) and conclude on the achievable accuracies and sensitivities. We shall indicate where improvements in comparison to the Pioneer Venus observations can be expected and examine VeRa`s contribution to the understanding of plasmaphysical processes in the solar wind and planetary ionospheric environment. Effects of the solar coronal plasma and the gravitational field of the Sun on the observables (Doppler, group delay) will also be addressed.

  17. Venus cloud-tracked and doppler velocimetry winds from CFHT/ESPaDOnS and Venus Express/VIRTIS in April 2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machado, Pedro; Widemann, Thomas; Peralta, Javier; Gonçalves, Ruben; Donati, Jean-François; Luz, David

    2017-03-01

    We present new coordinated observations and measurements of the wind amplitude and its variability at Venus cloud-tops based on the two complementary techniques of Ground-based Doppler velocimetry (Widemann et al., 2007, 2008; Machado et al., 2012, 2014) and cloud-tracked winds using ESA Venus Express/ VIRTIS-M imaging at 0.38 μm (Drossart et al., 2007; Sanchez-Lavega et al., 2008; Hueso et al., 2012; Machado et al., 2014). Cloud-tracked winds trace the true atmospheric motion also responsible for the Doppler-Fizeau shift of the solar radiation on the dayside by super-rotating moving cloud-tops with respect to both the Sun and the observer (Machado et al., 2014), and based on this complementarity, we performed a new coordinated campaign in April 2014 combining both Venus Express observations and ground-based Doppler wind measurements on the dayside of Venus' cloud tops at Canada-France-Hawaii telescope at a phase angle Φ =(76 ± 0.3) ∘ . The analysis and results show (1) additional confirmation of the coherence, and complementarity, in the results provided by these techniques, on both spatial and temporal time scales of the two methods; (2) first-time estimation of the meridional component of the wind in another planet using the Doppler velocimetry technique, with evidence of a symmetrical, poleward meridional Hadley flow in both hemispheres of vbarm = 22± 15.5 ms-1; (3) spatial and temporal variability of the zonal flow with latitude and local time, with a significant increase of wind amplitude near the morning terminator previously reported in Feb. 2011 observations.

  18. First observation of 628 CO 2 isotopologue band at 3.3 μm 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 μm. 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. Access to VIRTIS / Venus-Express post-operations data archive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erard, Stéphane; Drossart, Pierre; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Henry, Florence; Politi, Romolo

    2016-10-01

    All data acquired during the Venus-Express mission are publicly available on ESA's Planetary Science Archive (PSA). The PSA itself is being redesigned to provide more comprehensive access to its content and a new interface is expected to be ready in the coming months.However, an alternative access to the VIRTIS/VEx dataset is also provided in the PI institutes as part of the Europlanet-2020 European programme. The VESPA user interface (http://vespa.obspm.fr) provides a query mechanism based on observational conditions and instrument parameters to select data cubes of interest in the PSA and to connect them to standard plotting and analysis tools. VESPA queries will also identify related data in other datasets responsive to this mechanism, e. g., contextual images or dynamic simulations of the atmosphere, including outcomes of the EuroVenus programme funded by the EU. A specific on-line spectral cube viewer has been developed at Paris Observatory (http://voplus.obspm.fr/apericubes/js9/demo.php). Alternative ways to access the VIRTIS data are being considered, including python access to PDS3 data (https://github.com/VIRTIS-VEX/VIRTISpy) and distribution in NetCDF format on IAPS website (http://planetcdf.iaps.inaf.it). In the near future, an extended data service will provide direct access to individual spectra on the basis of viewing angles, time, and location.The next step will be to distribute products derived from data analysis, such as surface and wind maps, atmospheric profiles, movies of the polar vortices or O2 emission on the night side, etc. Such products will be accessed in a similar way, and will make VIRTIS results readily available for future Venus studies. Similar actions are taken in the frame of Europlanet concerning atmospheric data from the Mars-Express mission and Cassini observations of Titan.

  20. The Challenges and Opportunities for International Cooperative Radio Science; Experience with Mars Express and Venus Express Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holmes, Dwight P.; Thompson, Tommy; Simpson, Richard; Tyler, G. Leonard; Dehant, Veronique; Rosenblatt, Pascal; Hausler, Bernd; Patzold, Martin; Goltz, Gene; Kahan, Daniel; Valencia, Jose

    2008-01-01

    Radio Science is an opportunistic discipline in the sense that the communication link between a spacecraft and its supporting ground station can be used to probe the intervening media remotely. Radio science has recently expanded to greater, cooperative use of international assets. Mars Express and Venus Express are two such cooperative missions managed by the European Space Agency with broad international science participation supported by NASA's Deep Space Network (DSN) and ESA's tracking network for deep space missions (ESTRAK). This paper provides an overview of the constraints, opportunities, and lessons learned from international cross support of radio science, and it explores techniques for potentially optimizing the resultant data sets.

  1. 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

  2. Tracking of Mars Express and Venus Express spacecraft with VLBI radio telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molera Calvés, G.; Pogrebenko, S. V.; Wagner, J.; Cimò, G.; Gurvits, L.; Duev, D.

    2010-12-01

    The ESA Mars Express and Venus Express spacecraft (S/C) have been observed for the last two years with the European VLBI radio telescopes of Metsähovi (FI), Wettzell (GE), Yebes (SP), Medicina, Matera, Noto (IT), Puschino (RU) and Onsala (SW). The campaign is in the framework of the assessment study and preparation of the European VLBI Network to the upcoming ESA and other deep space missions. It also offers new opportunities for applications of radio astronomy techniques to planetary science, geophysics and geodesy. Observations are carried out either in single- or multi-dish modes when S/C is locked to the ESA’s ESTRACK ground stations (Cebreros or New Nortia) observing the two way link. Data are recorded locally at the stations using standard VLBI equipment and transferred to the Metsähovi for processing. Further on, the data are transferred from Metsähovi to Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe for further post-analysis. High dynamic range of the S/C signal detections allowed us to determine the apparent topocentric frequency of the S/C carrier line and accompanying ranging tones down to milli-Hz spectral accuracy and to extract the phase of the S/C signal carrier line. With multi-station observations, the respective phases can be calibrated on the per-baseline basis using VLBI phase referencing technique and observations of background quasars close to S/C in their celestial position using far-field VLBI delay model for quasars and near-field model for S/C. The post-analysis of the S/C tracking data enables us to study several parameters of the S/C signals. Of these, the phase fluctuations of the signal can be used for characterization of the interplanetary plasma density fluctuations along the signal propagation line at different spatial and temporal scales and different solar elongations. These fluctuations are well represented by a near-Kolmogorov spectrum. Multi-station observations can distinguish the contributions of propagation effects in the plasma

  3. 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.

  4. Habitats for life in the Venusian Environment? Can the VENUS EXPRESS payload answer?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muller, C.

    2003-04-01

    The Venusian conditions are unique in the solar system. Venus abounds in molecules which could feed a life form except that the usual missing factor, energy, is present in excessive amounts from both active geothermic phenomena and from the nearby solar radiation trapped in a dense carbon dioxide atmosphere. Its surface conditions are hotter than the best practiced in hospital sterilisation; volcanism injects highly toxic gases which in the absence of water can accumulate in the atmosphere. Its upper atmosphere lays bare to solar radiation with only carbon dioxide to act as a confirmed EUV filter, so any consideration of life might seem excessive compared to what was known from life on earth before extremophile bacterias were discovered in dark undersea high temperature sulphur rich volcanic vents. However, some regions of the atmosphere might show conditions similar to the earth surface and could be a habitat of earth like microbial life. A synergy between the different atmospheric instruments of the VENUS-Express payload: SPICAM, VIRTIS and PFS can provide the way to probe the actual environmental conditions of this region and to check its capabilities of preserving an extant life or providing nutrients to a new one.

  5. Mars Express and Venus Express multi-point observations of geoeffective solar flare events in December 2006

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2008-05-01

    In December 2006, a single active region produced a series of proton solar flares, with X-ray class up to the X9.0 level, starting on 5 December 2006 at 10:35 UT. A feature of this X9.0 flare is that associated MeV particles were observed at Venus and Mars by Venus Express (VEX) and Mars Express (MEX), which were ˜80° and ˜125° east of the flare site, respectively, in addition to the Earth, which was ˜79° west of the flare site. On December 5, 2006, the plasma instruments ASPERA-3 and ASPERA-4 on board MEX and VEX detected a large enhancement in their respective background count levels. This is a typical signature of solar energetic particle (SEP) events, i.e., intensive MeV particle fluxes. The timings of these enhancements were consistent with the estimated field-aligned travel time of particles associated with the X9.0 flare that followed the Parker spiral to reach Venus and Mars. Coronal mass ejection (CME) signatures that might be related to the proton flare were twice identified at Venus within <43 and <67 h after the flare. Although these CMEs did not necessarily originate from the X9.0 flare on December 5, 2006, they most likely originated from the same active region because these characteristics are very similar to flare-associated CMEs observed on the Earth. These observations indicate that CME and flare activities on the invisible side of the Sun may affect terrestrial space weather as a result of traveling more than 90° in both azimuthal directions in the heliosphere. We would also like to emphasize that during the SEP activity, MEX data indicate an approximately one-order of magnitude enhancement in the heavy ion outflow flux from the Martian atmosphere. This is the first observation of the increase of escaping ion flux from Martian atmosphere during an intensive SEP event. This suggests that the solar EUV flux levels significantly affect the atmospheric loss from unmagnetized planets.

  6. Morphology of the cloud tops as observed by the Venus Express Monitoring Camera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Titov, Dmitrij V.; Markiewicz, Wojciech J.; Ignatiev, Nikolay I.; Song, Li; Limaye, Sanjay S.; Sanchez-Lavega, Agustin; Hesemann, Jonas; Almeida, Miguel; Roatsch, Thomas; Matz, Klaus-Dieter; Scholten, Frank; Crisp, David; Esposito, Larry W.; Hviid, Stubbe F.; Jaumann, Ralf; Keller, Horst U.; Moissl, Richard

    2012-02-01

    Since the discovery of ultraviolet markings on Venus, their observations have been a powerful tool to study the morphology, motions and dynamical state at the cloud top level. Here we present the results of investigation of the cloud top morphology performed by the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) during more than 3 years of the Venus Express mission. The camera acquires images in four narrow-band filters centered at 365, 513, 965 and 1010 nm with spatial resolution from 50 km at apocentre to a few hundred of meters at pericentre. The VMC experiment provides a significant improvement in the Venus imaging as compared to the capabilities of the earlier missions. The camera discovered new cloud features like bright "lace clouds" and cloud columns at the low latitudes, dark polar oval and narrow circular and spiral "grooves" in the polar regions, different types of waves at the high latitudes. The VMC observations revealed detailed structure of the sub-solar region and the afternoon convective wake, the bow-shape features and convective cells, the mid-latitude transition region and the "polar cap". The polar orbit of the satellite enables for the first time nadir viewing of the Southern polar regions and an opportunity to zoom in on the planet. The experiment returned numerous images of the Venus limb and documented global and local brightening events. VMC provided almost continuous monitoring of the planet with high temporal resolution that allowed one to follow changes in the cloud morphology at various scales. We present the in-flight performance of the instrument and focus in particular on the data from the ultraviolet channel, centered at the characteristic wavelength of the unknown UV absorber that yields the highest contrasts on the cloud top. Low latitudes are dominated by relatively dark clouds that have mottled and fragmented appearance clearly indicating convective activity in the sub-solar region. At ˜50° latitude this pattern gives way to streaky clouds

  7. Venus - Ushas Mons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This area of Venus northeast of Ushas Mons measures 40 by 112 kilometers (25 by 70 miles) and shows evidence of possible explosive volcanism. A surface deposit that shows brightly in radar extends and broadens away from the 1 kilometer diameter (0.6 mile diameter) crater in the middle of the image. The deposit is brighter near the crater, fades gradually into the plains and ends about 10 kilometers (6 miles) from the crater. The underlying crisscross pattern becomes more visible away from the crater as the covering deposit thins out. These characteristics are typical of deposits on Earth formed by fallout from volcanic explosion plumes. A similar but darker deposit extends to the right of the crater. The crater on the western edge of the image also shows similar deposits. North is at the top of the image. The Magellan Mission 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 Magellan's primary mission. During that time Magellan will map about 80 percent of the Venus surface. Subsequent missions of equal duration will provide complete mapping of the planet. Magellan was launched May 4, 1989, aboard the space shuttle Atlantis and went into orbit around Venus August 10, 1990. The spacecraft completes one orbit every three hours and 15 minutes, passing as close to the planet as 294 kilometers (183 miles) and as far away from Venus as 8,472 kilometers (5,265 miles). The smallest objects seen in this image measure approximately 120 meters (400 feet).

  8. Electrophysiological characteristics of inhibitory neurons of the prepositus hypoglossi nucleus as analyzed in Venus-expressing transgenic rats.

    PubMed

    Shino, M; Kaneko, R; Yanagawa, Y; Kawaguchi, Y; Saito, Y

    2011-12-01

    The identification and characterization of excitatory and inhibitory neurons are significant steps in understanding neural network functions. In this study, we investigated the intrinsic electrophysiological properties of neurons in the prepositus hypoglossi nucleus (PHN), a brainstem structure that is involved in gaze holding, using whole-cell recordings in brainstem slices from vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT)-Venus transgenic rats, in which inhibitory neurons express the fluorescent protein Venus. To characterize the intrinsic properties of these neurons, we recorded afterhyperpolarization (AHP) profiles and firing patterns from Venus-expressing [Venus⁺] and Venus-non-expressing [Venus⁻] PHN neurons. Although both types of neurons showed a wide variety of AHP profiles and firing patterns, oscillatory firing was specific to Venus⁺ neurons, while a firing pattern showing only a few spikes was specific to Venus⁻ neurons. In addition, AHPs without a slow component and delayed spike generation were preferentially displayed by Venus⁺ neurons, whereas a firing pattern with constant interspike intervals was preferentially displayed by Venus⁻ neurons. We evaluated the mRNAs expression of glutamate decarboxylase (GAD65, GAD67) and glycine transporter 2 (GlyT2) to determine whether the recorded Venus⁺ neurons were GABAergic or glycinergic. Of the 67 Venus⁺ neurons tested, GlyT2 expression alone was detected in only one neuron. Approximately 40% (28/67) expressed GAD65 and/or GAD67 (GABAergic neuron), and the remainder (38/67) expressed both GAD(s) and GlyT2 (GABA&GLY neuron). These results suggest that most inhibitory PHN neurons use either GABA or both GABA and glycine as neurotransmitters. Although the overall distribution of firing patterns in GABAergic neurons was similar to that of GABA&GLY neurons, only GABA&GLY neurons exhibited a firing pattern with a long first interspike interval. These differential electrophysiological properties will be useful

  9. A Systems Identification based approach to the detection of spacecraft generated interference in Venus Express magnetometer data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pope, S. A.; Zhang, T.; Balikhin, M.; Delva, M.; Alleyne, H.

    2006-12-01

    It is a challenging problem to make accurate in situ measurements of the local magnetic field vector from a non-magnetically clean spacecraft. It is shown how fuzzy logic and nonlinear identification techniques can be applied to two point measurements to identify and correct for spacecraft contributions in the measured field vector. The techniques developed have been applied to data returned from the VEXMAG instrument onboard Venus Express.

  10. Detailed expression pattern of aldolase C (Aldoc) in the cerebellum, retina and other areas of the CNS studied in Aldoc-Venus knock-in mice.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Hirofumi; Aoki, Hanako; Ajioka, Itsuki; Yamazaki, Maya; Abe, Manabu; Oh-Nishi, Arata; Sakimura, Kenji; Sugihara, Izumi

    2014-01-01

    Aldolase C (Aldoc, also known as "zebrin II"), a brain type isozyme of a glycolysis enzyme, is expressed heterogeneously in subpopulations of cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs) that are arranged longitudinally in a complex striped pattern in the cerebellar cortex, a pattern which is closely related to the topography of input and output axonal projections. Here, we generated knock-in Aldoc-Venus mice in which Aldoc expression is visualized by expression of a fluorescent protein, Venus. Since there was no obvious phenotypes in general brain morphology and in the striped pattern of the cerebellum in mutants, we made detailed observation of Aldoc expression pattern in the nervous system by using Venus expression in Aldoc-Venus heterozygotes. High levels of Venus expression were observed in cerebellar PCs, cartwheel cells in the dorsal cochlear nucleus, sensory epithelium of the inner ear and in all major types of retinal cells, while moderate levels of Venus expression were observed in astrocytes and satellite cells in the dorsal root ganglion. The striped arrangement of PCs that express Venus to different degrees was carefully traced with serial section alignment analysis and mapped on the unfolded scheme of the entire cerebellar cortex to re-identify all individual Aldoc stripes. A longitudinally striped boundary of Aldoc expression was first identified in the mouse flocculus, and was correlated with the climbing fiber projection pattern and expression of another compartmental marker molecule, heat shock protein 25 (HSP25). As in the rat, the cerebellar nuclei were divided into the rostrodorsal negative and the caudoventral positive portions by distinct projections of Aldoc-positive and negative PC axons in the mouse. Identification of the cerebellar Aldoc stripes in this study, as indicated in sample coronal and horizontal sections as well as in sample surface photos of whole-mount preparations, can be referred to in future experiments.

  11. Visualization of RelB expression and activation at the single-cell level during dendritic cell maturation in Relb-Venus knock-in mice.

    PubMed

    Seki, Takao; Yamamoto, Mami; Taguchi, Yuu; Miyauchi, Maki; Akiyama, Nobuko; Yamaguchi, Noritaka; Gohda, Jin; Akiyama, Taishin; Inoue, Jun-ichiro

    2015-12-01

    RelB is activated by the non-canonical NF-κB pathway, which is crucial for immunity by establishing lymphoid organogenesis and B-cell and dendritic cell (DC) maturation. To elucidate the mechanism of the RelB-mediated immune cell maturation, a precise understanding of the relationship between cell maturation and RelB expression and activation at the single-cell level is required. Therefore, we generated knock-in mice expressing a fusion protein between RelB and fluorescent protein (RelB-Venus) from the Relb locus. The Relb(Venus/Venus) mice developed without any abnormalities observed in the Relb(-/-) mice, allowing us to monitor RelB-Venus expression and nuclear localization as RelB expression and activation. Relb(Venus/Venus) DC analyses revealed that DCs consist of RelB(-), RelB(low) and RelB(high) populations. The RelB(high) population, which included mature DCs with projections, displayed RelB nuclear localization, whereas RelB in the RelB(low) population was in the cytoplasm. Although both the RelB(low) and RelB(-) populations barely showed projections, MHC II and co-stimulatory molecule expression were higher in the RelB(low) than in the RelB(-) splenic conventional DCs. Taken together, our results identify the RelB(low) population as a possible novel intermediate maturation stage of cDCs and the Relb(Venus/Venus) mice as a useful tool to analyse the dynamic regulation of the non-canonical NF-κB pathway.

  12. VIRTIS on Venus Express thermal emission spectra near 1μm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller, Nils; Tsang, Constantine; Helbert, Joern; Smrekar, Suzanne; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Drossart, Pierre

    2016-10-01

    Thermal emission from the surface of Venus is observable through narrow spectral windows close to 1μm. Surface temperature is strongly constrained by surface elevation, due to the thick and dense atmosphere. The data from Visible and InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer VIRTIS on Venus Express together with altimetry constrain surface emissivity. In VIRTIS observations at 1.02μm, strongly deformed highland plateaus (tesserae) appear to have a lower emissivity consistent with continental crust, an interpretation that implies existence of an early ocean. Comparison between the Magellan stereo digital elevation model (DEM) and altimetry shows that the altimetry height error in rough tesserae greatly exceeds the formal error. In the one tesserae outlier covered by altimetry, DEM, and VIRTIS, the height error could account for the observed emissivity variation. The radiances observed at 1.10 and 1.18μm have a different response to topography, mostly due to spectrally varying absorption in the overlying atmospheric column. Thus if the tesserae have the same emissivity as volcanic plains, its spectrum should be the same as that of plains of the correct surface elevation. In order to investigate this statistically, we create a database of all long exposure duration VIRTIS spectra in the range of 1 - 1.4μm. The spectra are corrected for the ubiquitous straylight from the dayside, based on analysis of spectra showing deep space. Because the 1.10 and 1.18μm peaks are narrow compared to the variation of instrument spectral registration, we fit each spectrum with a synthetic spectrum from an atmospheric radiative transfer model, using wavelength offset and bandwidths as parameters in addition to atmospheric variables. This dataset of ~28 million thermal emission spectra spans a wide range of southern latitudes and night local times, and thus may be useful for studies beyond the question of surface emissivity. A portion of this research was conducted at the Jet Propulsion

  13. In situ observations of waves in Venus’s polar lower thermosphere with Venus Express aerobraking

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller-Wodarg, Ingo C. F.; Bruinsma, Sean; Marty, Jean-Charles; Svedhem, Håkan

    2016-08-01

    Waves are ubiquitous phenomena found in oceans and atmospheres alike. From the earliest formal studies of waves in the Earth’s atmosphere to more recent studies on other planets, waves have been shown to play a key role in shaping atmospheric bulk structure, dynamics and variability. Yet, waves are difficult to characterize as they ideally require in situ measurements of atmospheric properties that are difficult to obtain away from Earth. Thus, we have incomplete knowledge of atmospheric waves on planets other than our own, and we are thereby limited in our ability to understand and predict planetary atmospheres. Here we report the first ever in situ observations of atmospheric waves in Venus’s thermosphere (130-140 km) at high latitudes (71.5°-79.0°). These measurements were made by the Venus Express Atmospheric Drag Experiment (VExADE) during aerobraking from 24 June to 11 July 2014. As the spacecraft flew through Venus’s atmosphere, deceleration by atmospheric drag was sufficient to obtain from accelerometer readings a total of 18 vertical density profiles. We infer an average temperature of T = 114 +/- 23 K and find horizontal wave-like density perturbations and mean temperatures being modulated at a quasi-5-day period.

  14. Wetlab-2 - Quantitative PCR Tools for Spaceflight Studies of Gene Expression Aboard the International Space Station

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schonfeld, Julie E.

    2015-01-01

    Wetlab-2 is a research platform for conducting real-time quantitative gene expression analysis aboard the International Space Station. The system enables spaceflight genomic studies involving a wide variety of biospecimen types in the unique microgravity environment of space. Currently, gene expression analyses of space flown biospecimens must be conducted post flight after living cultures or frozen or chemically fixed samples are returned to Earth from the space station. Post-flight analysis is limited for several reasons. First, changes in gene expression can be transient, changing over a timescale of minutes. The delay between sampling on Earth can range from days to months, and RNA may degrade during this period of time, even in fixed or frozen samples. Second, living organisms that return to Earth may quickly re-adapt to terrestrial conditions. Third, forces exerted on samples during reentry and return to Earth may affect results. Lastly, follow up experiments designed in response to post-flight results must wait for a new flight opportunity to be tested.

  15. Geologic Analysis of the Surface Thermal Emission Images Taken by the VMC Camera, Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilevsky, A. T.; Shalygin, E. V.; Titov, D. V.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Scholten, F.; Roatsch, Th.; Fiethe, B.; Osterloh, B.; Michalik, H.; Kreslavsky, M. A.; Moroz, L. V.

    2010-03-01

    Analysis of Venus Monitoring Camera 1-µm images and surface emission modeling showed apparent emissivity at Chimon-mana tessera and shows that Tuulikki volcano is higher than that of the adjacent plains; Maat Mons did not show any signature of ongoing volcanism.

  16. A study of the Martian water vapor over Hellas using OMEGA and PFS aboard Mars Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Encrenaz, T.; Fouchet, T.; Melchiorri, R.; Drossart, P.; Gondet, B.; Langevin, Y.; Bibring, J.-P.; Forget, F.; Maltagliati, L.; Titov, D.; Formisano, V.

    2008-06-01

    We used the OMEGA imaging spectrometer aboard Mars Express to study the evolution of the water vapor abundance over the Hellas basin, as a function of the seasonal cycle. The H2O column density is found to range from very low values (between southern fall and winter) up to more than 15 pr-μm during southern spring and summer. The general behavior is consistent with the expected seasonal cycle of water vapor on Mars, as previously observed by TES and modeled. In particular, the maximum water vapor content is observed around the southern solstice, and is significantly less than its northern couterpart. However, there is a noticeable discrepancy around the northern spring equinox (Ls = 330-60°), where the observed H2O column densities are significantly lower than the values predicted by the GCM. Our data show an abrupt enhancement of the water vapor column density (from 3 to 16 pr-μm) on a timescale of 3 days, for Ls = 251-254°. Such an increase, not predicted by the GCM, was also occasionally observed by TES over Hellas during previous martian years at the same season; however, its origin remains to be understood.

  17. 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.

  18. On ion escape from Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jarvinen, R.

    2011-04-01

    This doctoral thesis is about the solar wind influence on the atmosphere of the planet Venus. A numerical plasma simulation model was developed for the interaction between Venus and the solar wind to study the erosion of charged particles from the Venus upper atmosphere. The developed model is a hybrid simulation where ions are treated as particles and electrons are modelled as a fluid. The simulation was used to study the solar wind induced ion escape from Venus as observed by the European Space Agency's Venus Express and NASA's Pioneer Venus Orbiter spacecraft. Especially, observations made by the ASPERA-4 particle instrument onboard Venus Express were studied. The thesis consists of an introductory part and four peer-reviewed articles published in scientific journals. In the introduction Venus is presented as one of the terrestrial planets in the Solar System and the main findings of the work are discussed within the wider context of planetary physics.Venus is the closest neighbouring planet to the Earth and the most earthlike planet in its size and mass orbiting the Sun. Whereas the atmosphere of the Earth consists mainly of nitrogen and oxygen, Venus has a hot carbon dioxide atmosphere, which is dominated by the greenhouse effect. Venus has all of its water in the atmosphere, which is only a fraction of the Earth's total water supply. Since planets developed presumably in similar conditions in the young Solar System, why Venus and Earth became so different in many respects?One important feature of Venus is that the planet does not have an intrinsic magnetic field. This makes it possible for the solar wind, a continuous stream of charged particles from the Sun, to flow close to Venus and to pick up ions from the planet's upper atmosphere. The strong intrinsic magnetic field of the Earth dominates the terrestrial magnetosphere and deflects the solar wind flow far away from the atmosphere. The region around Venus where the planet's atmosphere interacts with the

  19. On ion escape from Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jarvinen, Riku

    2011-04-01

    This doctoral thesis is about the solar wind influence on the atmosphere of the planet Venus. A numerical plasma simulation model was developed for the interaction between Venus and the solar wind to study the erosion of charged particles from the Venus upper atmosphere. The developed model is a hybrid simulation where ions are treated as particles and electrons are modelled as a fluid. The simulation was used to study the solar wind induced ion escape from Venus as observed by the European Space Agency's Venus Express and NASA's Pioneer Venus Orbiter spacecraft. Especially, observations made by the ASPERA-4 particle instrument onboard Venus Express were studied. The thesis consists of an introductory part and four peer-reviewed articles published in scientific journals. In the introduction Venus is presented as one of the terrestrial planets in the Solar System and the main findings of the work are discussed within the wider context of planetary physics. Venus is the closest neighbouring planet to the Earth and the most earthlike planet in its size and mass orbiting the Sun. Whereas the atmosphere of the Earth consists mainly of nitrogen and oxygen, Venus has a hot carbon dioxide atmosphere, which is dominated by the greenhouse effect. Venus has all of its water in the atmosphere, which is only a fraction of the Earth's total water supply. Since planets developed presumably in similar conditions in the young Solar System, why Venus and Earth became so different in many respects? One important feature of Venus is that the planet does not have an intrinsic magnetic field. This makes it possible for the solar wind, a continuous stream of charged particles from the Sun, to flow close to Venus and to pick up ions from the planet's upper atmosphere. The strong intrinsic magnetic field of the Earth dominates the terrestrial magnetosphere and deflects the solar wind flow far away from the atmosphere. The region around Venus where the planet's atmosphere interacts with the

  20. 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-ν″ with ν″ = 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 ν″ = 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(aΔg-XΣg-) 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.

  1. Comet Halley: The view from Pioneer Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  2. First Analysis of Densities Inferred from Accelerometer Data on ESA's Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruinsma, S.; Mueller-Wodarg, I. C. F.; Marty, J. C.; Svedhem, H.

    2015-12-01

    After completing its primary science mission, ESA decided to do a risky aerobraking campaign with Venus Express (VEx) in order to gain operational experience as well as to measure high-resolution density profiles at high northern latitude. VEx was in a polar and highly eccentric orbit (e=0.84). In the aerobraking period from 24 June to 11 July 2014, the pericenter was at 75°N at an altitude of 130-134 km, and the local solar time drifted from 6.2 to 4.5 hr. One density profile extending about 3° in latitude on both sides of the pericenter has been obtained for each of the 18 consecutive days at 1 Hz sampling, after ingestion of the 8 Hz accelerometer data in the GINS software. The uncertainty in the derived density is the sum of a systematic part due to the uncertainty in Cd, estimated to be 10%, and a noise and bias part due to the accelerometers. Using the accelerometer errors according to specifications, a signal-to-noise ratio of one is reached on average at 139 km altitude. The validity range of the VEx densities can also be evaluated by means of comparison with a model. The VEx-to-VTS3 density ratios were computed for each profile, and these results are consistent with the specified instrument resolution. VEx densities are on average nearly a factor of 2 smaller than VTS3, which is in agreement with Precise Orbit Determination results obtained for higher altitudes (160-170 km). However, variability of up to tens of percent is visible in the form of wavelike activity as well as an altitude-dependent variation that is revealed by ratios that become smaller towards the start and end of the profile. The latter model error hints at an inaccurate the temperature profile, errors in constituent concentrations, or both. The waves can be interpreted as a superposition of two wave trains with wavelengths of around 100 km and 250 km. Average scale heights over the range of observations (130-140 km) are found to be 2.9+/-0.6 km.

  3. 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).

  4. Multiple signal propagation at the tropopause of the Venusian atmosphere: new insights from the Radio Science Experiment (VeRa) onboard Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herrmann, Maren; Oschlisniok, Janusz; Remus, Stefan; Tellmann, Silvia; Häusler, Bernd; Pätzold, Martin

    2016-10-01

    The rapid change of the refractive index over a short altitude range in a planetary atmosphere can lead to multi-path effects when sounding the atmosphere with radio waves. The Radio Science Experiment (VeRa) [1,2] onboard Venus Express sounded the Venusian atmosphere from 90 km downward to 40 km altitude[3,4]. More than 800 profiles of temperature, pressure and neutral number density could be retrieved which cover almost all local times and latitudes. A specially developed analysis method based on the VeRa open loop receiving technique deciphers the multi-path effect and identifies an inversion layer near the tropopause at an altitude of about 60km. This layer is of particular interest - it separates the stratified troposphere from the highly variable mesosphere and can be a likely location for the formation of gravity waves [5]. The new retrieval method shows an inversion layer up to 15 K colder than commonly thought. Local time and latitude dependence including the influence of the spacecraft trajectory on this effect will be discussed. These results will contribute to a consistent picture of the Venus' thermal atmosphere structure and therefore help to improve atmospheric models.[1] Häusler, B. et al: 'Radio science investigations by VeRa onboard the Venus Express spacecraft' Planetary and Space Science 54, 2006[2] Häusler, B. et al, 'Venus Atmospheric, Ionospheric, Surface and Interplanetery Radio-Wave Propagation Studies with the VeRa Radio Science experiment' Eur. Space Agencys, Spec. Publ., ESA SP 1295, 2007[3] Pätzold, M. et al: 'The structure of Venus' middle atmosphere and ionosphere', Nature 450, 2007[4] Tellmann, S. et al : 'Structure of the Venus neutral atmosphere as observed by the Radio Science experiment VeRa on Venus Express', Journal of Geophysical Research 114, 2009[5] Tellmann, S. et al: 'Small-scale temperature fluctuations seen by the VeRa Radio Science Experiment on Venus Express' Icarus 221, 2012.

  5. Venus geology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McLaughlin, W. I.

    1991-05-01

    The Magellan mission to Venus is reviewed. The scientific investigations conducted by 243-day cycles encompass mapping with a constant incidence angle for the radar, observing surface changes from one cycle to the next, and targeting young-looking volcanos. The topography of Venus is defined by the upper boundary of the crust and upwelling from lower domains. Tectonic features such as rift zones, linear mountain belts, ridge belts, and tesserae are described. The zones of tesserae are unique to the planet. Volcanism accounts for about 80 percent of the observed surface, the remainder being volcanic deposits which have been reworked by tectonism or impacts. Magellan data reveal about 900 impact craters with flow-like ejecta resulting from the fall of meteoroids. It is concluded that the age of the Venusian surface varies between 0 and 800 million years. Tectonic and volcanic activities dominate the formation of the Venus topography; such processes as weathering and erosion are relatively unimportant on Venus.

  6. 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)

  7. 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)

  8. Bimodal Distribution of Sulfuric Acid Aerosols in the Atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Peter; Zhang, X.; Crisp, D.; Bardeen, C. G.; Yung, Y. L.

    2013-10-01

    Observations by the SPICAV/SOIR instruments aboard Venus Express have revealed that the upper haze of Venus, between 70 and 90 km, is variable on the order of days and that it is populated by two particle modes. In this work, we posit that the observed phenomena are caused by the transient mixing of the clouds and the haze, as well as another source of sulfuric acid aerosols in the upper haze that nucleate on meteoric dust. We test this hypothesis by simulating a column of the Venus atmosphere from 40 to 100 km above the surface using a model based upon the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres and consider the effects of meteoric dust and polysulfur acting as condensation nuclei in the upper haze and upper cloud, respectively, as well as transient winds at the cloud tops caused by subsolar convection. Our aerosol number density results are consistent with Pioneer Venus data from Knollenberg and Hunten (1980), while our gas distribution results match the Magellan radio occultation data as analyzed by Kolodner and Steffes (1998) below 55 km. The size distribution of cloud particles shows two distinct modes in the upper clouds region and three distinct modes in the middle and lower clouds regions, qualitatively matching the observations of Pioneer Venus. The UH size distribution shows one distinct mode that is likely an upwelled cloud particle population with which an in situ meteoric dust condensation particle population has coagulated. The results of the transient wind simulations yield a variability timescale that is consistent with Venus Express observations, as well as a clear bimodal size distribution in the UH.

  9. 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

  10. Ion signatures of magnetic flux ropes in the Venusian ionosphere as observed by APSERA-4 and MAG onboard Venus Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guymer, G.; Grande, M.; Whittaker, I.

    2008-09-01

    Abstract Venus has a negligible intrinsic magnetic moment with an upper limit a factor 10-5 of earth's [1]. This entails that the ionosphere is vulnerable to scavenging by the solar wind. However, magnetic fields may be induced in the ionosphere by interaction with the interplanetary magnetic field frozen-in to the solar wind. The presence of small scale magnetic structures in the dayside ionosphere of the planet Venus has been long established and were first observed in Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) data in 1979 [2] during the run up to solar maximum. These ionospheric `flux ropes' were observed in over 70% of passes in which the orbit of PVO intersected the dayside ionosphere [3]. Magnetic flux ropes are identified as brief, discrete disturbances from any background magnetic field, lasting a few seconds with a magnitude of up to many 10's of nano-Teslas in strength [3, 4]. Flux ropes have a strong central, axial field, that is wrapped with field lines of weakening strength and increased helical angle with distance from the central field lines [4]. Due to this particular structure, flux ropes present a specific signature in the three variance projections (also known as a hodogram) when minimum variance analysis is applied to the magnetic data set [2]. With Venus Express now in operational orbit around the planet, flux ropes are being observed in the data retrieved by the magnetometers (MAG [5]) onboard. The magnetic data used in this analysis is the 1Hz data set provided by H. Wei (of UCLA). Variance projections have been produced for several structures in 2006, revealing them to be flux ropes (see figure 1). Using the Ion Mass Analyser (IMA; part of the ASPERA-4 package [6]) and MAG, the ion composition within the ropes and the effect of such magnetic structures upon ionospheric erosion is being studied. Where flux ropes have been evident in the magnetic data, ion spectra have been produced in an attempt to deduce any compositional differences between a flux rope

  11. Venus gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reasenberg, Robert D.

    1993-01-01

    The anomalous gravity field of Venus shows high correlation with surface features revealed by radar. We extract gravity models from the Doppler tracking data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) by means of a two-step process. In the first step, we solve the nonlinear spacecraft state estimation problem using a Kalman filter-smoother. The Kalman filter was evaluated through simulations. This evaluation and some unusual features of the filter are discussed. In the second step, we perform a geophysical inversion using a linear Bayesian estimator. To allow an unbiased comparison between gravity and topography, we use a simulation technique to smooth and distort the radar topographic data so as to yield maps having the same characteristics as our gravity maps. The maps presented cover 2/3 of the surface of Venus and display the strong topography-gravity correlation previously reported. The topography-gravity scatter plots show two distinct trends.

  12. Upstream proton cyclotron waves at Venus near solar maximum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delva, M.; Bertucci, C.; Volwerk, M.; Lundin, R.; Mazelle, C.; Romanelli, N.

    2015-01-01

    magnetometer data of Venus Express are analyzed for the occurrence of waves at the proton cyclotron frequency in the spacecraft frame in the upstream region of Venus, for conditions of rising solar activity. The data of two Venus years up to the time of highest sunspot number so far (1 Mar 2011 to 31 May 2012) are studied to reveal the properties of the waves and the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) conditions under which they are observed. In general, waves generated by newborn protons from exospheric hydrogen are observed under quasi- (anti)parallel conditions of the IMF and the solar wind velocity, as is expected from theoretical models. The present study near solar maximum finds significantly more waves than a previous study for solar minimum, with an asymmetry in the wave occurrence, i.e., mainly under antiparallel conditions. The plasma data from the Analyzer of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms instrument aboard Venus Express enable analysis of the background solar wind conditions. The prevalence of waves for IMF in direction toward the Sun is related to the stronger southward tilt of the heliospheric current sheet for the rising phase of Solar Cycle 24, i.e., the "bashful ballerina" is responsible for asymmetric background solar wind conditions. The increase of the number of wave occurrences may be explained by a significant increase in the relative density of planetary protons with respect to the solar wind background. An exceptionally low solar wind proton density is observed during the rising phase of Solar Cycle 24. At the same time, higher EUV increases the ionization in the Venus exosphere, resulting in higher supply of energy from a higher number of newborn protons to the wave. We conclude that in addition to quasi- (anti)parallel conditions of the IMF and the solar wind velocity direction, the higher relative density of Venus exospheric protons with respect to the background solar wind proton density is the key parameter for the higher number of

  13. 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.

  14. The Venus Emissivity Mapper

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Helbert, Joern; Marcq, Emmanuel; Widemann, Thomas; Mueller, Nils; Kappel, David; Tsang, Constantine; Maturilli, Alessandro; Ferrari, Sabrina; D'Amore, Mario; Dyar, Melinda; Smrekar, Suzanne

    2016-10-01

    The permanent cloud cover of Venus prohibits observations of the surface with traditional imaging techniques over the entire visible spectral range. Fortunately, Venus' atmospheric gases are largely transparent in narrow spectral windows near 1 mm. Ground observers were the first to successfully use these windows, followed by spacecraft observations during the flyby of the Galileo mission on its way to Jupiter and most recently from Venus orbit by ESA's Venus Express with the VMC and VIRTIS instruments. Analyses of VIRTIS measurements have successfully demonstrated that surface information can be extracted from these windows, but the design of the instrument limited its use for more in-depth surface investigations.Based on experience gained from using VIRTIS to observe the surface of Venus and new high temperature laboratory experiments currently performed at the Planetary Spectroscopy Laboratory of DLR, we have designed the multi-spectral Venus Emissivity Mapper (VEM). Observations from VIRTIS have revealed surface emissivity variations correlated with geological features, but existing data sets contain only three spectral channels. VEM is optimized to map the surface composition and texture, and to search for active volcanism using the narrow atmospheric windows, building on lessons from prior instrumentation and methodology. It offers an opportunity to gain important information about surface mineralogy and texture by virtue of having six different channels for surface mapping.VEM is focused mainly on observing the surface, mapping in all near-IR atmospheric windows using filters with spectral characteristics optimized for the wavelengths and widths of those windows. It also observes bands necessary for correcting atmospheric effects; these bands also provide valuable scientific data on composition as well as altitude and size distribution of the cloud particles, and on H2O vapor abundance variations in the lowest 15 km of the atmosphere.In combination with a

  15. Venus mapping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Batson, R. M.; Morgan, H. F.; Sucharski, Robert

    1991-01-01

    Semicontrolled image mosaics of Venus, based on Magellan data, are being compiled at 1:50,000,000, 1:10,000,000, 1:5,000,000, and 1:1,000,000 scales to support the Magellan Radar Investigator (RADIG) team. The mosaics are semicontrolled in the sense that data gaps were not filled and significant cosmetic inconsistencies exist. Contours are based on preliminary radar altimetry data that is subjected to revision and improvement. Final maps to support geologic mapping and other scientific investigations, to be compiled as the dataset becomes complete, will be sponsored by the Planetary Geology and Geophysics Program and/or the Venus Data Analysis Program. All maps, both semicontrolled and final, will be published as I-maps by the United States Geological Survey. All of the mapping is based on existing knowledge of the spacecraft orbit; photogrammetric triangulation, a traditional basis for geodetic control on planets where framing cameras were used, is not feasible with the radar images of Venus, although an eventual shift of coordinate system to a revised spin-axis location is anticipated. This is expected to be small enough that it will affect only large-scale maps.

  16. 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.

  17. Venus Highland Anomalous Reflectivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simpson, Richard A.; Tyler, G. L.; Häusler, B.; Mattei, R.; Patzold, M.

    2009-09-01

    Maxwell Montes was one of several unusually bright areas identified from early Venus radar backscatter observations. Pioneer Venus' orbiting radar associated low emissivity with the bright areas and established a correlation between reflectivity and altitude. Magellan, using an oblique bistatic geometry, showed that the bright surface dielectric constant was not only large but also imaginary -- i.e., the material was conducting, at least near Cleopatra Patera (Pettengill et al., Science, 272, 1996). Venus Express (VEX) repeated Magellan's bistatic observations over Maxwell, using the more conventional circular polarization carried by most spacecraft. Although VEX signal-to-noise ratio was lower than Magellan's, echoes were sufficiently strong to verify the Magellan conclusions near Cleopatra (see J. Geophys. Res., 114, E00B41, doi:10.1029/2008JE003156). Only about 40% of the surface at Cleopatra scatters specularly, opening the Fresnel (specular) interpretation model to question. Elsewhere in Maxwell, the specular percentage may be even lower. Nonetheless, the echo polarization is reversed throughout Maxwell, a result that is consistent with large dielectric constants and difficult to explain without resorting qualitatively (if not quantitatively) to specular models. VEX was scheduled to explore other high altitude regions when its S-Band (13-cm wavelength) radio system failed in late 2006, so further probing of high altitude targets awaits arrival of a new spacecraft.

  18. Study On The Upper Atmosphere Of Venus At The Terminator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, Johanna-Laina; Bougher, S. W.; Hicks, G. A.; Brecht, A. S.; Parkinson, C.; Mahieux, A.; Wilquet, V.; Vandaele, A.; Bertaux, J.

    2012-10-01

    Observations have been made using the SOIR instrument aboard the Venus Express (VEx) mission characterizing the temperature and carbon dioxide profiles at the terminators. Using the Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (VTGCM), these profiles can also be modeled at the terminators for many latitudes. For this research, the SOIR and VTGCM profiles are averaged in the following northern latitude bins; 0-30, 30-60, 70-80, 80-90. Using the data from SOIR and outputs from the VTGCM, one can determine how well the current model reproduces the observations at the terminator. In the current VTGCM model, the temperature maximum and minimums characteristic of the data profiles are the same if not very similar with the exception of the magnitude of these characteristic features. The SOIR data tends to reveal more extreme maximum and minimum temperatures as compared to the simulated VTGCM values. Some assumptions made in the data processing technique used to determine the SOIR profile retrievals may not be valid. This causes temperatures around 125 km and above 140 km to not be as accurately represented. VTGCM thermal balance plots help address this problem. In addition, these balances provide insight as to why the model may not be in complete agreement with these SOIR profiles while also determining any missing physical processes that are not included in the current VTGCM framework. Data-model comparisons will also be considered for variable VTGCM parameters, including solar minimum and moderate fluxes as well as extremes of the wave drag parameter yielding minimum and maximum terminator winds. Using the VTGCM model in correspondence with data collected from the SOIR instrument, this study will characterize the overall climate at the Venus terminators and give insight into the physical mechanisms responsible.

  19. New Interface for Accessing Archived European Space Agency Planetary Science Data, Such as the New Venus Express Atmospheric Drag Experiment Data Set

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grotheer, E.; Barbarisi, I.; Rios, C.; Macfarlane, A. J.; Docasal, R.; Arviset, C.; Besse, S.; Heather, D.; Gonzalez, J.; De Marchi, G.; Martinez, S.; Lim, T.; Fraga, D.

    2015-12-01

    All Venus Express (VEX) instruments delivered their data products according to the Planetary Data System version 3 (PDS3) standard, and the atmospheric drag experiment (ADE) data was no exception. The European Space Agency's (ESA) Planetary Science Archive (PSA), which can be accessed at www.rssd.esa.int/PSA, is being upgraded to make PDS4 data available from newer missions such as ExoMars and BepiColombo. Thus, the PSA development team has been working to ensure that the legacy PDS3 data will be accessible via the new interface as well. We will preview some of the new methods of accessing legacy VEX data via the new interface, with a focus being placed on the ADE data set. We will show how the ADE data can be accessed using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and our plans for making this and other data sets compatible with the Virtual European Solar and Planetary Access (VESPA) project for creating a virtual observatory. From February 2010 through March 2014, ESA's Venus Express mission conducted 11 ADE campaigns. During these observation campaigns, VEX's pericenter was in the range of 165 to 190 km, while the spacecraft was near Venus' North pole, and the entire spacecraft was used to make in situ measurements of the atmospheric density. This was done by rotating the solar panels in a manner that somewhat resembles a windmill. Also, VEX 's attitude and orbit control system was tasked with maintaining the spacecraft in a 3-axis stabilized mode during these pericenter passes. The torques that the reaction wheels had to exert to maintain this attitude were then analyzed to yield density readings.

  20. "Depend on, Rely on, Count on": Economic Subjectivities Aboard "The Polar Express"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saltmarsh, Sue

    2009-01-01

    Christmas literature and film produced for children is an important, albeit under-researched, site for the production of cultural values and norms. This paper analyses Chris Van Allsburg's 1985 picture book "The Polar Express", the 2004 Warner Brothers feature film of the same title, the film's official website, and resources for teachers…

  1. Nature of the Venus thermosphere derived from satellite drag measurements (solicited paper)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keating, G.; Theriot, M.; Bougher, S.

    2008-09-01

    density, scale height, inferred temperature, pressure, and other parameters as a function of altitude. The risk involved in the orbital decay and accelerometer measurements is minimal. We have not lost any spacecraft orbiting Venus or Mars due to unexpected thermospheric drag effects in over 30 years. The Venus Express accelerometer drag experiment is very similar to accelerometer experiments aboard Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter which orbit Mars. The Venus Express drag measurements of the polar region will allow a global empirical model of the thermosphere to emerge. Previous drag measurements have been made principally near the equator. The experiment may help us understand on a global scale, tides, winds, gravity waves, planetary waves, and the damping of waves. Comparisons will be made between low and high latitude results; between the middle and upper atmosphere; and with other instruments that provide information from current and previous measurements. The character of the sharp temperature gradient near the day/night terminator needs to be studied at all latitudes. The cryosphere we discovered on the nightside needs to be studied at high latitudes. The rotating vortex dipole over the North Pole surrounded by a colder "collar" needs to be analyzed to identify how wave activity extends into the polar thermosphere. We have already discovered super-rotation in the equatorial thermosphere, but we need to study 4-day super-rotation at higher latitudes to obtain a global picture of the thermosphere. The super-rotation may affect escape rates and the evolution of the atmosphere. References: [1] Keating, G. M., et al: Venus Thermosphere and Exosphere: First Satellite Drag Measurements of an Extraterrestrial Atmosphere. Science, Vol. 203, No. 4382, 772-774, Feb. 23, 1979. [2] Keating, G. M. and Bougher, S.W.: Isolation of Major Venus Cooling Mechanism and Implications for Earth and Mars, Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 97, 4189

  2. Venus's southern polar vortex reveals precessing circulation.

    PubMed

    Luz, D; Berry, D L; Piccioni, G; Drossart, P; Politi, R; Wilson, C F; Erard, S; Nuccilli, F

    2011-04-29

    Initial images of Venus's south pole by the Venus Express mission have shown the presence of a bright, highly variable vortex, similar to that at the planet's north pole. Using high-resolution infrared measurements of polar winds from the Venus Express Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) instrument, we show the vortex to have a constantly varying internal structure, with a center of rotation displaced from the geographic south pole by ~3 degrees of latitude and that drifts around the pole with a period of 5 to 10 Earth days. This is indicative of a nonsymmetric and varying precession of the polar atmospheric circulation with respect to the planetary axis.

  3. Venus cartography

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Batson, R. M.; Kirk, R. L.; Edwards, Kathleen; Morgan, H. F.

    1994-01-01

    The entire surface of the planet Venus is being mapped at global and regional scales (1:50 million through 1:1.5 million) with synthetic aperture radar (SAR), radar altimeter, and radiometer measurements of physical properties from the Magellan spacecraft. The mapping includes SAR image mosaics, shaded relief maps, and topographic contour overlays made from altimetry data and by radargrammetric methods. Methods used include new techniques of radar image processing that became operational as a result of the Magellan mission. Special cartographic support products prepared by the USGS include: synthetic stereograms, color thematic maps of physical properties, digital shaded relief maps from opposite-look SAR, and topographic maps by radargrammetry. The area being mapped (at a resolution of 75 m/pixel) is roughly equivalent to that of Earth, including seafloors. The mapping is designed to support geologic and geophysical investigations.

  4. Sensitivity of Venus surface emissivity retrieval to model variations of CO2 opacity, cloud features, and deep atmosphere temperature field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kappel, David; Arnold, Gabriele; Haus, Rainer

    2012-07-01

    The Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) aboard ESA's Venus Express space probe has acquired a wealth of nightside emission spectra from Venus and provides the first global database for systematic atmospheric and surface studies in the IR. The infrared mapping channel (VIRTIS-M-IR) sounds the atmosphere and surface at high spatial and temporal resolution and coverage. Quantitative analyses of data call for a sophisticated radiative transfer simulation model of Venus' atmosphere to be used in atmospheric and surface parameter retrieval procedures that fit simulated spectra to the measured data. The surface emissivity can be retrieved from VIRTIS-M-IR measurements in the transparency windows around 1 μm, but it is not easy to derive, since atmospheric influences strongly interfere with surface information. There are mainly three atmospheric model parameters that may affect quantitative results of surface emissivity retrievals: CO_2 opacity, cloud features, and deep atmosphere temperature field. The CO_2 opacity with respect to allowed transitions is usually computed by utilizing a suitable line data base and certain line shape models that consider collisional line mixing. Both line data bases and shape models are not well established from measurements under the environmental conditions in the deep atmosphere of Venus. Pressure-induced additional continuum absorption introduces further opacity uncertainties. The clouds of Venus are usually modeled by a four-modal distribution of spherical droplets of about 75% sulfuric acid, where each mode is characterized by a different mean and standard deviation of droplet size distribution and a different initial altitude abundance profile. The influence of possible cloud mode variations on surface emissivity retrieval results is investigated in the paper. Future retrieval procedures will aim at a separation of cloud mode and surface emissivity variations using different atmospheric windows sounded by

  5. CMEs impact Venus and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Wei, Y.; Woch, J.; Morgan, D.; Zhang, T.-L.; Frdorov, A.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.

    2012-09-01

    Most of Mars Express and Venus Express observations at Mars and Venus were carried out during the extended epoch of solar minimum. Ascending solar cycle 24 has already provided us with the intervals of the increased solar activity characterized by solar flares and coronal mass ejections. In several cases these strong solar disturbances have impacted both planets. The ASPERA-3, ASPERA-4 and MAG instruments onboard MEX and VEX complemented by the measurements on ACE and STEREO were used not only to monitor the propagation of solar disturbances at Venus and Mars positions but also to detect changes which occurred in the plasma and field environment near these planets. Simultaneous measurements by the Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionosphere Sounding (MARSIS) instrument onboard Mars Express gives us also information about the variations which occured in the upper and lower Martian ionosphere. We incorporate these data for several events on June 2011 and February 2012 and March 2012 to infer responses of the induced magnetospheres and ionospheres of Venus and Mars to strong solar wind disturbances.

  6. Spatial and Temporal distribution of CO_{2} 4.3-mu m NLTE Emission from nadir VIRTIS-H/Venus Express observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peralta, Javier; Ángel López-Valverde, Miguel; Gilli, Gabriella; Drossart, Pierre; Piccioni, Giuseppe

    2010-05-01

    Non-Local Thermodynamic Equilibrium (non-LTE) emissions are known to play a key role in the radiative heating and cooling of the Venus mesosphere and lower thermosphere (Dickinson, JAS, 1973; Roldan et al., Icarus, 2000). In the case of the Venusian atmosphere, CO2 vibrational-rotational emissions at 4.3 μm and 2.7 μm were predicted to give intense emissions, and since they are originated between 80 and 150 km, their observation might give information on the atmospheric parameters at those altitudes, depending on sensitivity and spectral resolution. The VIRTIS spectrometer on board Venus Express allows for the first time the systematic sounding of these bands in the Venus atmosphere, both in nadir and limb observing geometries. The limb data by VIRTIS has been recently studied by our team (Gilli et al., JGR, 2009; López-Valverde et al., 2010 submitted; Gilli et al., 2010 submitted), focusing on its vertical distribution and the validation of non-LTE models, but an exhaustive study of nadir observations has not been presented so far, except for the detection of gravity waves by García et al. (2008; 2009). In this work, we have used the nadir observations to study the horizontal distribution of the CO2 non-LTE emissions at 4.3 μm, mainly originated at altitudes about ~110 km. The analyzed dataset comprises the whole nadir measurements with VIRTIS-H (the highest spectral resolution channel) obtained up to September 2009, covering nearly 900 days of observations and more than 140,000 spectra. Similarly to the case of limb data, it was found that the nadir radiance depends not only on the Solar Zenith Angle, but also on the Emission Angle, as predicted by our non-LTE model. After careful radiance averages, the small dispersion found in the mean emission of this band suggests that the Venus lower thermosphere is more stable than expected, with scarce episodes of significant variation during the studied period. Since the spectral resolution of VIRTIS-H allows

  7. Aeronomy of the Venus upper atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gérard, J.-C.; Bougher, S. W.; Drossart, P.; Lopez-Valverde, M.; Pätzold, M.; Piccioni, G.

    2014-04-01

    The structure and content of the 'aeronomy' chapter of the Venus III book will be discussed. This chapter will review all recent results obtained from remote sensing of the upper atmosphere with emphasis on non-thermal emissions, global transport, wind, chemistry and composition related to airglow observations and modeling. Measurements of the ionospheric structure and its variability will be described. Data collected with instruments on board the Venus Express missions will be complemented with ground-based observations and results collected during the Cassini Venus flyby. Recent developments in global modeling coupling photochemistry, transport and gravity waves will also be compared with this set of new observations.

  8. Simulation of Radar-Backscattering from Phobos - A Contribution to the Experiment MARSIS aboard MarsExpress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plettemeier, D.; Hahnel, R.; Hegler, S.; Safaeinili, A.; Orosei, R.; Cicchetti, A.; Plaut, J.; Picardi, G.

    2009-04-01

    MARSIS (Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionosphere Sounding) on board MarsExpress is the first and so far the only space borne radar that observed the Martian moon Phobos. Radar echoes were measured for different flyby trajectories. The primary aim of the low frequency sounding of Phobos is to prove the feasibility of deep sounding, into the crust of Phobos. In this poster we present a numerical method that allows a very precise computation of radar echoes backscattered from the surface of large objects. The software is based on a combination of physical optics calculation of surface scattering of the radar target, and Method of Moments to calculate the radiation pattern of the whole space borne radar system. The calculation of the frequency dependent radiation pattern takes into account all relevant gain variations and coupling effects aboard the space craft. Based on very precise digital elevation models of Phobos, patch models in the resolution of lambda/10 were generated. Simulation techniques will be explained and a comparison of simulations and measurements will be shown. SURFACE BACKSCATTERING SIMULATOR FOR LARGE OBJECTS The computation of surface scattering of the electromagnetic wave incident on Phobos is based on the Physical Optics method. The scattered field can be expressed by the induced equivalent surface currents on the target. The Algorithm: The simulation program itself is split into three phases. In the first phase, an illumination test checks whether a patch will be visible from the position of the space craft. If this is not the case, the patch will be excluded from the simulation. The second phase serves as a preparation stage for the third phase. Amongst other tasks, the dyadic products for the Js and Ms surface currents are calculated. This is a time-memory trade-off: the simulation will need additional 144 bytes of RAM for every patch that passes phase one. However, the calculation of the dyads is expensive, so that considerable

  9. Generation of Small-Mode Particles via Nucleation of Meteoric Dust in the Upper Haze of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yung, Yuk; Gao, P.; Zhang, X.; Crisp, D.; Bardeen, C. G.

    2012-10-01

    Observations by the SPICAV/SOIR instruments aboard Venus Express has revealed that the Upper Haze of Venus is populated by two particle modes, as reported by Wilquet et al. (J. Geophys. Res., 114, E00B42, 13pp, 2009). In this work we posit that the large mode is due to the upwelling of cloud particles, while the smaller mode is generated by the nucleation of meteoric dust. We test this hypothesis by using version 3.0 of the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres, first developed by Turco et al. (J. Atmos. Sci., 36, 699-717, 1979) and upgraded by Bardeen et al. (The CARMA 3.0 microphysics package in CESM, Whole Atmosphere Working Group Meeting, 2011). Using the meteoric dust production profile of Kalashnikova et al. (Geophys. Res. Lett., 27, 3293-3296, 2000), the sulfur/sulfate condensation nuclei production profile of Imamura and Hashimoto (J. Atmos. Sci., 58, 3597-3612, 2001), and sulfuric acid vapour production profile of Zhang et al. (Icarus, 217, 714-739, 2012), we numerically simulate a column of the Venus atmosphere from 40 to 100 km above the surface. Our aerosol number density results agree well with Pioneer Venus data from Knollenberg and Hunten (J. Geophys. Res., 85, 8039-8058, 1980), while our gas distribution results match that of Kolodner and Steffes (Icarus, 132, 151-169, 1998). There is a mediocre agreement between our cloud deck size distribution and Pioneer Venus data. The Upper Haze size distribution shows two lognormal distributions overlapping each other, possibly indicating the presence of two modes, though more analysis is required at this time. Finally, we treat the simulated aerosol particles as Mie scatterers and compute their optical parameters. The results show a minimum in the optical depth at a wavelength of 300 nm, comparable to the results of Lacis (J. Atmos. Sci., 32, 1107-1124, 1975).

  10. Meteoric Dust as Condensation Nuclei of Small-Mode Particles in the Upper Haze of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, P.; Zhang, X.; Crisp, D.; Bardeen, C.; Yung, Y. L.

    2012-12-01

    Observations by the SPICAV/SOIR instruments aboard Venus Express have revealed that the Upper Haze of Venus is populated by two particle modes, as reported by Wilquet et al. (J. Geophys. Res., 114, E00B42, 2009). In this work, we posit that the large mode is made up of cloud particles that have diffused upwards from the cloud deck below, while the smaller mode is generated by the in situ nucleation of meteoric dust. We test this hypothesis by using version 3.0 of the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmospheres, first developed by Turco et al. (J. Atmos. Sci., 36, 699-717, 1979) and upgraded to version 3.0 by Bardeen et al. (The CARMA 3.0 microphysics package in CESM, Whole Atmosphere Working Group Meeting, 2011). Using the meteoric dust production profile of Kalashnikova et al. (Geophys. Res. Lett., 27, 3293-3296, 2000), the sulfur/sulfate condensation nuclei production profile of Imamura and Hashimoto (J. Atmos. Sci., 58, 3597-3612, 2001), and sulfuric acid vapor production profile of Zhang et al. (Icarus, 217, 714-739, 2012), we numerically simulate a column of the Venus atmosphere from 40 to 100 km above the surface. Our aerosol number density results agree well with Pioneer Venus data from Knollenberg and Hunten (J. Geophys. Res., 85, 8039-8058, 1980), while our gas distribution results match that of Kolodner and Steffes below 55 km (Icarus, 132, 151-169, 1998). The resulting size distribution of cloud particles shows two distinct modes, qualitatively matching the observations of Pioneer Venus. We also observe a third mode in our results with a size of a few microns at 48 km altitude, which appears to support the existence of the controversial third mode in the Pioneer Venus data. This mode disappears if coagulation is not included in the simulation. The Upper Haze size distribution shows two lognormal-like distributions overlapping each other, possibly indicating the presence of the two distinct modes. We test our hypothesis by simulating the

  11. On the Possibility of Microbiota Transfer from Venus to Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wickramasinghe, N. C.; Wickramasinghe, J. T.

    The possibility of the clouds of Venus providing habitats for extremophilic microorganisms has been discussed for several decades. We show here that the action of the solar wind leads to erosion of parts of the atmosphere laden with aerosols and putative microorganisms, forming a comet-like tail in the antisolar direction. During inferior conjunctions that coincide with transits of the planet Venus this comet-like tail intersects the Earth's magnetopause and injects aerosol particles. Data from ESA's Venus Express spacecraft and from SOHO are used to discuss the ingress of bacteria from Venus into the Earth's atmosphere, which we estimate as ~1011-1013 cells for each transit event.

  12. Venus Exploration Power Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Surampudi, R.; Bugga, K.; Grandidier, J.; Cutts, J. A.; Beauchamp, P. M.

    2017-02-01

    Venus with its severe temperatures and pressures presents formidable challenges for powering in situ exploration vehicles. This paper describes possible approaches for both power generation and energy storage.

  13. Colonization of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2003-01-01

    Although the surface of Venus is an extremely hostile environment, at about 50 kilometers above the surface the atmosphere of Venus is the most earthlike environment (other than Earth itself) in the solar system. It is proposed here that in the near term, human exploration of Venus could take place from aerostat vehicles in the atmosphere, and that in the long term, permanent settlements could be made in the form of cities designed to float at about fifty kilometer altitude in the atmosphere of Venus.

  14. Solar wind interaction with Venus and impact on its atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barabash, S.; Futaana, Y.; Wieser, G. S.; Luhmann, J.

    2014-04-01

    We present a review of the solar wind interaction with Venus and how the interaction affects the Venusian atmosphere. The Venus Express observations for more than 8 years (2005-present) and quantitatively new simulation codes substantially advanced physical understanding of the plasma processes in the near-Venus space since the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) mission (1978-1992). The near-Venus space can be divided into several plasma domains: the magnetotail with the plasmasheet, induced magnetosphere, and magnetosheath. The bow shock separates the undisturbed solar wind from the Venus-affected environment. We review the shapes and positions of the boundaries enveloping the main domains and discuss how they are formed by the current systems and pressure balance. In particular, we discuss the morphology and dynamics of the near-Venus magnetotail that was not accessible by PVO. Using the unique Venus Express measurements we discuss the ion acceleration processes and their links to the ionosphere. The focus is given to the Venus' atmosphere erosion associated with the solar wind interaction, both through the energy (ion acceleration) and momentum (atmospheric sputtering) transfer. We review the measurements of the escape rates, their variability with the upstream solar wind conditions and the solar cycle. We emphasize the measurements duirng extreme solar wind conditions as an analogue with nominal conditions for the young Sun. The modeling efforts in this area are also reviewed as they provide a quantitatively approach to understand the impact of the solar wind interaction on the atmospheric evolution. Finally, we compare Venus with other planets of the terrestrial planet group, the Earth and Mars. The Earth, a twin planet of the similar size, is magnetized. Mars, an unmagnetized planet like Venus, possesses by far weaker gravitation to hold its atmospheric gasses. This comparative magnetosphere approach based on the natural solar system laboratory of experiments gives

  15. Priorities for Venus Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glaze, L. S.; Beauchamp, P. M.; Chin, G.; Crisp, D.; Grimm, R. E.; Herrick, R. R.; Johnston, S.; Limaye, S. S.; Smrekar, S. E.; Ocampo, A.; Thompson, T. W.

    2013-12-01

    Venus remains one of the most enigmatic bodies in our Solar System. Important questions remain regarding the origin and evolution of the atmosphere, the history of the surface and interior, and how the surface and atmosphere interact. In a broader context, understanding Venus has implications for understanding the evolution of terrestrial planets in our Solar System as well as for interpreting the growing set of observations of extra-solar planets. The Venus Exploration Analysis Group (VEXAG), established in 2005, is chartered by NASA's Planetary Science Division and reports its findings to the NASA Advisory Council. Open to all interested scientists, VEXAG regularly evaluates Venus exploration goals, scientific objectives, investigations and critical measurement requirements, including especially recommendations in the NRC Decadal Survey and the Solar System Exploration Strategic Roadmap. At the last general meeting in November 2012, VEXAG resolved to update the scientific priorities and strategies for Venus exploration. To achieve this goal, three major tasks were defined for 2013, (1) update the document prioritizing Goals, Objectives and Investigations for Venus Exploration, (2) develop a Roadmap for Venus exploration that is consistent with VEXAG priorities as well as Planetary Decadal Survey priorities, and (3) develop a white paper on technologies for Venus missions. Proposed versions of all three documents were presented at the VEXAG general meeting in November 2013. Here, we present the findings and final versions of all three documents for community comment and feedback. A follow-on Workshop on Venus Exploration Targets is also being planned for the early summer of 2014. The workshop will provide a forum for the Venus science community to discuss approaches for addressing high priority investigations. Participants will be encouraged to present their ideas for specific targets on Venus (interior, surface and atmosphere) as well as to present specific data

  16. Registration of 'VENUS' peanut

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    VENUS is a large-seeded high-oleic Virginia-type peanut (Arachis hypogaea L. subsp. hypogaea var. hypogaea) that has enhanced Sclerotinia blight and pod rot resistance when compared to the cultivar Jupiter. VENUS is the first high-oleic Virginia peanut developed for optimal performance in the South...

  17. Venus Exploration to 2050

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cutts, J. A.; Grimm, R. E.; Gilmore, M.

    2017-02-01

    Venus should be an Earth-like planet due to its similar size and position in the solar system, but it has developed very differently. The Venus Exploration Assessment Group (VEXAG) has formulated long-range plans to explore our puzzling sister planet.

  18. Venus Aerobot Multisonde Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cutts, James A.; Kerzhanovich, Viktor; Balaram, J. Bob; Campbell, Bruce; Gershaman, Robert; Greeley, Ronald; Hall, Jeffery L.; Cameron, Jonathan; Klaasen, Kenneth; Hansen, David M.

    1999-01-01

    Robotic exploration of Venus presents many challenges because of the thick atmosphere and the high surface temperatures. The Venus Aerobot Multisonde mission concept addresses these challenges by using a robotic balloon or aerobot to deploy a number of short lifetime probes or sondes to acquire images of the surface. A Venus aerobot is not only a good platform for precision deployment of sondes but is very effective at recovering high rate data. This paper describes the Venus Aerobot Multisonde concept and discusses a proposal to NASA's Discovery program using the concept for a Venus Exploration of Volcanoes and Atmosphere (VEVA). The status of the balloon deployment and inflation, balloon envelope, communications, thermal control and sonde deployment technologies are also reviewed.

  19. Progress towards a Venus reference cloud model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Colin; Ignatiev, Nikolay; Marcq, Emmanuel

    Venus is completely enveloped by clouds. The main cloud layers stretch from altitudes of 48 - 75 km, with additional tenuous hazes found at altitudes 30 - 100 km. Clouds play a crucial role in governing atmospheric circulation, chemistry and climate on all planets, but particularly so on Venus due to the optical thickness of the atmosphere. The European Space Agency’s Venus Express (VEx) satellite has carried out a wealth of observations of Venus clouds since its arrival at Venus in April 2006. Many VEx observations are relevant to cloud science - from imagers and spectrometers to solar, stellar and radio occultation - each covering different altitude ranges, spectral ranges and atmospheric constituents. We have formed an International Team at the International Space Science Institute to bring together scientists from each of the relevant Venus Express investigation teams as well as from previous missions, as well as those developing computational and analytical models of clouds and hazes. The aims of the project are (1) to create self-consistent reference cloud/haze models which capture not only a mean cloud structure but also its main modes of variability; and (2) to bring together modelers and observers, to reach an understanding of clouds and hazes on Venus which matches all observables and is physically consistent. Our approach is to first to assemble an averaged cloud profile for low latitudes, showing how cloud number abundances and other observables vary as a function of altitude, consistent with all available observations. In a second step, we will expand this work to produce a reference cloud profile which varies with latitude and local solar time, as well as optical thickness of the cloud. We will present our status in progressing towards this goal. We acknowledge the support of the International Space Science Institute of Berne, Switzerland, in hosting our Team’s meetings.

  20. Pioneer Venus Data Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Douglas E.

    1996-01-01

    Analysis and interpretation of data from the Orbiter Retarding Potential Analyzer (ORPA) onboard the Pioneer Venus Orbiter is reported. By comparing ORPA data to proton data from the Orbiter Plasma Analyzer (OPA), it was found that the ORPA suprathermal electron densities taken outside the Venusian ionopause represent solar wind electron densities, thus allowing the high resolution study of Venus bow shocks using both magnetic field and solar wind electron data. A preliminary analysis of 366 bow shock penetrations was completed using the solar wind electron data as determined from ORPA suprathermal electron densities and temperatures, resulting in an estimate of the extent to which mass loading pickup of O+ (UV ionized O atoms flowing out of the Venus atmosphere) upstream of the Venus obstacle occurred. The pickup of O+ averaged 9.95%, ranging from 0.78% to 23.63%. Detailed results are reported in two attached theses: (1) Comparison of ORPA Suprathermal Electron and OPA Solar Wind Proton Data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter and (2) Pioneer Venus Orbiter Retarding Potential Analyzer Observations of the Electron Component of the Solar Wind, and of the Venus Bow Shock and Magnetosheath.

  1. Venus Gravity Handbook

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Konopliv, Alexander S.; Sjogren, William L.

    1996-01-01

    This report documents the Venus gravity methods and results to date (model MGNP90LSAAP). It is called a handbook in that it contains many useful plots (such as geometry and orbit behavior) that are useful in evaluating the tracking data. We discuss the models that are used in processing the Doppler data and the estimation method for determining the gravity field. With Pioneer Venus Orbiter and Magellan tracking data, the Venus gravity field was determined complete to degree and order 90 with the use of the JPL Cray T3D Supercomputer. The gravity field shows unprecedented high correlation with topography and resolution of features to the 2OOkm resolution. In the procedure for solving the gravity field, other information is gained as well, and, for example, we discuss results for the Venus ephemeris, Love number, pole orientation of Venus, and atmospheric densities. Of significance is the Love number solution which indicates a liquid core for Venus. The ephemeris of Venus is determined to an accuracy of 0.02 mm/s (tens of meters in position), and the rotation period to 243.0194 +/- 0.0002 days.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. AKATSUKI returns to Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Masato; Imamura, Takeshi; Ishii, Nobuaki; Abe, Takumi; Kawakatsu, Yasuhiro; Hirose, Chikako; Satoh, Takehiko; Suzuki, Makoto; Ueno, Munetaka; Yamazaki, Atsushi; Iwagami, Naomoto; Watanabe, Shigeto; Taguchi, Makoto; Fukuhara, Tetsuya; Takahashi, Yukihiro; Yamada, Manabu; Imai, Masataka; Ohtsuki, Shoko; Uemizu, Kazunori; Hashimoto, George L.; Takagi, Masahiro; Matsuda, Yoshihisa; Ogohara, Kazunori; Sato, Naoki; Kasaba, Yasumasa; Kouyama, Toru; Hirata, Naru; Nakamura, Ryosuke; Yamamoto, Yukio; Horinouchi, Takeshi; Yamamoto, Masaru; Hayashi, Yoshi-Yuki; Kashimura, Hiroki; Sugiyama, Ko-ichiro; Sakanoi, Takeshi; Ando, Hiroki; Murakami, Shin-ya; Sato, Takao M.; Takagi, Seiko; Nakajima, Kensuke; Peralta, Javier; Lee, Yeon Joo; Nakatsuka, Junichi; Ichikawa, Tsutomu; Inoue, Kozaburo; Toda, Tomoaki; Toyota, Hiroyuki; Tachikawa, Sumitaka; Narita, Shinichiro; Hayashiyama, Tomoko; Hasegawa, Akiko; Kamata, Yukio

    2016-05-01

    AKATSUKI is the Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter that was designed to investigate the climate system of Venus. The orbiter was launched on May 21, 2010, and it reached Venus on December 7, 2010. Thrust was applied by the orbital maneuver engine in an attempt to put AKATSUKI into a westward equatorial orbit around Venus with a 30-h orbital period. However, this operation failed because of a malfunction in the propulsion system. After this failure, the spacecraft orbited the Sun for 5 years. On December 7, 2015, AKATSUKI once again approached Venus and the Venus orbit insertion was successful, whereby a westward equatorial orbit with apoapsis of ~440,000 km and orbital period of 14 days was initiated. Now that AKATSUKI's long journey to Venus has ended, it will provide scientific data on the Venusian climate system for two or more years. For the purpose of both decreasing the apoapsis altitude and avoiding a long eclipse during the orbit, a trim maneuver was performed at the first periapsis. The apoapsis altitude is now ~360,000 km with a periapsis altitude of 1000-8000 km, and the period is 10 days and 12 h. In this paper, we describe the details of the Venus orbit insertion-revenge 1 (VOI-R1) and the new orbit, the expected scientific information to be obtained at this orbit, and the Venus images captured by the onboard 1-µm infrared camera, ultraviolet imager, and long-wave infrared camera 2 h after the successful initiation of the VOI-R1.

  5. Does Venus wobble

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoder, C. F.; Ward, W. R.

    1979-01-01

    The free wobble damping time for Venus due to solar tides and rotational flexing is found to be approximately 700,000 times Q sub omega years, where Q sub omega is the dissipation function associated with the wobble frequency. The slow spin and expected small (nonhydrostatic) J2 predict a very long wobble period of about 100,000 years. As a result, a simple scaling of the earth's Chandler wobble excitation rate to that of Venus suggests that an appreciable wobble could exist. Detection (or lack thereof) of a free wobble may thus place constraints on the dynamic activity (e.g., mantle convection, Venusquakes, etc.) of the Venus interior.

  6. Venus 2000 Mission Design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Folta, David; Marr, Greg; Vaughn, Frank; Houghton, Martin B.

    1997-05-01

    As part of the Discovery Program, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has solicited proposals for inter-planetary research to conduct solar system exploration science investigations. A mission, called Venus 2000 (V2k), has been proposed for exploration of the Venus Atmosphere. This is NASAs first voyage to Venus to investigate key science objectives since Magellan and will be launched in summer 2002. In keeping with discovery program requirements to reduce total mission cost and utilize new technology, V2k mission design and control will focus on the use of innovative and proven trajectory analysis programs and control systems provided by the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC).

  7. Manned Venus Orbiting Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Willis, E. A., Jr.

    1967-01-01

    Manned orbiting stopover round trips to Venus are studied for departure dates between 1975 and 1986 over a range of trip times and stay times. The use of highly elliptic parking orbits at Venus leads to low initial weights in Earth orbit compared with circular orbits. For the elliptic parking orbit, the effect of constraints on the low altitude observation time on the initial weight is shown. The mission can be accomplished with the Apollo level of chemical propulsion, but advanced chemical or nuclear propulsion can give large weight reductions. The Venus orbiting mission weights than the corresponding Mars mission.

  8. 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.

  9. SOHO Sees Venus' Approach

    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 ...

  10. Mariner-Venus 1967

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1971-01-01

    Detailed information on the spacecraft performance, mission operations, and tracking and data acquisition is presented for the Mariner Venus 1967 and Mariner Venus 1967 extension projects. Scientific and engineering results and conclusions are discussed, and include the scientific mission, encounter with Venus, observations near Earth, and cruise phase of the mission. Flight path analysis, spacecraft subsystems, and mission-related hardware and computer program development are covered. The scientific experiments carried by Mariner 5 were ultraviolet photometer, solar plasma probe, helium magnetometer, trapped radiation detector, S-band radio occultation, dual-frequency radio propagation, and celestial mechanics. The engineering experience gained by converting a space Mariner Mars 1964 spacecraft into one flown to Venus is also described.

  11. The Atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hansen, J. E. (Editor)

    1975-01-01

    Topics considered at the conference included the dynamics, structure, chemistry, and evolution of the Venus atmosphere, as well as cloud physics and motion. Infrared, ultraviolet, and radio occultation methods of analysis are discussed, and atmospheric models are described.

  12. Three-dimensional modelling of Venus photochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stolzenbach, Aurélien; Lefèvre, Franck; Lebonnois, Sébastien; Määttänen, Anni; Bekki, Slimane

    2014-05-01

    We have developed a new code of the Venus atmospheric chemistry based on our photochemical model already in use for Mars (e.g., Lefèvre et al., J. Geophys. Res., 2004). For Venus, the code also includes a parameterized treatment of cloud microphysics that computes the composition of sulphuric acid droplets and their number density based on a given droplet size distribution in altitude. We coupled this photochemical-microphysical package to the LMD general circulation model of Venus (Lebonnois et al., J. Geophys. Res., 2010) with a sedimentation module recently added. We will describe preliminary results obtained with this first three-dimensional model of the Venus photochemistry. The space and time distribution of key chemical species as well as the modelled clouds characteristics will be detailed and compared to observations performed from Venus Express and from the Earth (e.g. Knollenberg and Hunten, J. Geophys. Res., 1980 ; Wilquet et al., J. Geophys. Res., 2009 ; Sandor et al., Icarus, 2012).

  13. Three-Dimensional Modelling of Venus Photochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stolzenbach, A.; Lefèvre, F.; Lebonnois, S.; Maattanen, A. E.; Bekki, S.

    2015-12-01

    We have developed a new code of the Venus atmospheric chemistry based on our photochemical model already in use for Mars (e.g., Lefèvre et al., J. Geophys. Res., 2004). For Venus, the code also includes a parameterized treatment of cloud microphysics that computes the composition of sulphuric acid droplets and their number density based on a given droplet size distribution in altitude and latitude. We coupled this photochemical-microphysical package to the LMD general circulation model of Venus (Lebonnois et al., J. Geophys. Res., 2010) with a sedimentation module that takes into account the parametrized droplet size distribution. We will describe the results obtained with this first three-dimensional model of the Venus photochemistry. The space and time distribution of key chemical species as well as the modelled clouds characteristics will be detailed and compared to observations performed from Venus Express and from the Earth (e.g. Knollenberg and Hunten, J. Geophys. Res., 1980 ; Wilquet et al., J. Geophys. Res., 2009 ; Sandor et al., Icarus, 2012 ; Mahieux et al., PSS, 2014 ; Marcq et al., 2015, PSS).

  14. 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.

  15. Transits of Venus and Mercury as muses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tobin, William

    2013-11-01

    Transits of Venus and Mercury have inspired artistic creation of all kinds. After having been the first to witness a Venusian transit, in 1639, Jeremiah Horrocks expressed his feelings in poetry. Production has subsequently widened to include songs, short stories, novels, novellas, sermons, theatre, film, engravings, paintings, photography, medals, sculpture, stained glass, cartoons, stamps, music, opera, flower arrangements, and food and drink. Transit creations are reviewed, with emphasis on the English- and French-speaking worlds. It is found that transits of Mercury inspire much less creation than those of Venus, despite being much more frequent, and arguably of no less astronomical significance. It is suggested that this is primarily due to the mythological associations of Venus with sex and love, which are more powerful and gripping than Mercury's mythological role as a messenger and protector of traders and thieves. The lesson for those presenting the night sky to the public is that sex sells.

  16. 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

  17. Seasons on Venus - cloud cover signatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay; Markiewicz, Wojciech; Krauss, Robert

    2015-04-01

    With the smallest obliquity and orbital eccentricity of any planet around the Sun, Venus is not generally expected to show any seasonal variations in its atmosphere. Careful analysis of the global images obtained by the Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) on board European Space Agency's Venus Express orbiter from 12 June 2006 orbit 24) till 15 September 2014 (orbit 3043) reveal short term variations and a detectable periodic variation in the normalized intensity (reflectance) as well as in unit optical depth at a fixed local time at low latitudes as well as at high latitudes. VMC ultraviolet images were brightness normalized using Minnaert Law and the brightness at the sub-solar meridian at different latitudes in the southern hemisphere. The unit optical dept was inferred by precision location of the limb location in images acquired during the apoapsis portion of the orbit at range greater than ~ 30,000 km from Venus center. The temporal changes of the unit optical depth was monitored at fixed solar zenith angles and latitude. The seasonal signature is more pronounced at high latitudes compared to low latitudes. The data suggest that the variations in insolation due to heliocentric range and the small obliquity are responsible for the periodic changes in the Venus cloud cover. Concurrent changes in the cloud changes are also observed at other three wavelengths (550, 950 and 1050 nm) at which VMC obtained images, but the number of images at these wavelengths is much smaller. A secular decrease in the image brightness is observed over the life of the Venus Express mission, most likely due to the degradation of the some of the optical/sensor elements.

  18. Astrobiology and Venus Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2005-12-01

    Venus has not traditionally been considered a promising target for Astrobiological exploration. We propose that Venus should be central to such an exploration program for several reasons. 1) Putting Earth life in context: Venus is the only other Earth-sized terrestrial planet that we know of, and certainly the only one we will have the opportunity to explore in the foreseeable future. Many geological and meteorological processes otherwise active only on Earth at present are currently active on Venus. For example, active volcanism is most likely responsible for maintaining the global cloud cover (Bullock and Grinspoon, 2001). Understanding the divergence of Earth and Venus is central to understanding the limits of habitability in the inner regions of habitable zones around solar-type stars. Thus Venus presents us with a unique opportunity for putting the bulk properties, evolution and ongoing geochemical processes of Earth in a wider context. 2) The possibility of extant life: Venus almost surely once had warm oceans. The evaporation of these oceans, and subsequent escape of hydrogen, most likely resulted in an oxygenated atmosphere. The duration of this phase is poorly understood, but during this time the terrestrial planets were not isolated. Rather, due to frequent impact transport, they represented a continuous environment for early microbial life. Life, once established in the early oceans of Venus, may have migrated to the clouds which, on present day Venus, may represent a habitable niche. Though highly acidic, this aqueous environment enjoys moderate temperatures, surroundings far from chemical equilibrium, and potentially useful radiation fluxes. Observations of unusual chemistry in the clouds, and particle populations that are not well characterized, suggest that this environment must be explored much more fully before biology can be ruled out. A sulfur-based metabolism for cloud-based life on Venus has recently been proposed (Schulze-Makuch et al., 2004

  19. Aeolian processes on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.

    1984-01-01

    Many of the questions regarding aeolian processes on Venus and the subsequent implications for surface history involve understanding the physics of particle motion in the venusian environment. The surface environment of Venus is simulated as closely as practicable using the Venus Wind Tunnel and to determine threshold wind speeds, particle flux, particle velocities, and the characteristics of various aeolian bedforms. Despite the relatively low wind speeds on Venus, the flux of windblown material on Venus is potentially high. A high fraction of material is transported as surface creep by rolling, estimates yield rates up to 100 kg per cm lane width per year depending upon the availability of material and wind frequency, suggesting that the formation of lowland plains by aeolian processes and the burial of various landforms such as impact craters could occur on short geological time-scales. Wind tunnel simulations demonstrate that aeolian processes may be very effective in modifying the surface through erosion and deposited and may have an important influence on the composition of the atmosphere.

  20. Venus cloud properties inferred from limb darkening curves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Longobardo, A.; Palomba, E.; Piccioni, G.; Zinzi, A.; Tsang, C. C. C.; Drossart, P.

    2011-10-01

    The limb darkening (LD) curve is the plot of radiance I as function of cosine of the emission angle (i.e. angle between the line of sight and the normal to the target). Its shape is related to atmospheric and cloud properties, such as opacity and scale height. These can be deduced also considering the plot of brightness temperature T as function of cos at some wavelengths [1,2]. In this work, Venus clouds have been studied by means of a LD study on infrared images of the Venus nightside, provided by the VIRTIS-Venus Express instrument [3].

  1. Quantifying shapes of volcanoes on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garvin, J. B.

    1994-01-01

    A large population of discrete volcanic edifices on Venus has been identified and cataloged by means of Magellan SAR images, and an extensive database describing thousands of such features is in final preparation. Those volcanoes categorized as Intermediate to Large in scale, while relatively small in number (approx. 400), nonetheless constitute a significant volumetric component (approx. 13 x 10(exp 6) cu km) of the total apparent crustal volume of Venus. For this reason, we have focused attention on the morphometry of a representative suite of the larger edifices on Venus and, in particular, on ways of constraining the eruptive histories of these possibly geologically youthful landforms. Our approach has been to determine a series of reproducible morphometric parameters for as many of the discrete volcanoes on Venus that have an obvious expression within the global altimetry data acquired by Magellan. In addition, we have attempted to objectively and systematically define the mathematical essence of the shapes of these larger volcanoes using a polynomial cross-section approximation involving only parameters easily measured from digital topography, as well as with simple surface cylindrical harmonic expansions. The goal is to reduce the topological complexities of the larger edifices to a few simple parameters which can then be related to similar expressions for well-studied terrestrial and martian features.

  2. Astrobiology and Venus exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grinspoon, David H.; Bullock, Mark A.

    For hundreds of years prior to the space age, Venus was considered among the most likely homes for extraterrestrial life. Since planetary exploration began, Venus has not been considered a promising target for Astrobiological exploration. However, Venus should be central to such an exploration program for several reasons. At present Venus is the only other Earth-sized terrestrial planet that we know of, and certainly the only one we will have the opportunity to explore in the foreseeable future. Understanding the divergence of Earth and Venus is central to understanding the limits of habitability in the inner regions of habitable zones around solar-type stars. Thus Venus presents us with a unique opportunity for putting the bulk properties, evolution and ongoing geochemical processes of Earth in a wider context. Many geological and meteorological processes otherwise active only on Earth at present are currently active on Venus. Active volcanism most likely affects the climate and chemical equilibrium state of the atmosphere and surface, and maintains the global cloud cover. Further, if we think beyond the specifics of a particular chemical system required to build complexity and heredity, we can ask what general properties a planet must possess in order to be considered a possible candidate for life. The answers might include an atmosphere with signs of flagrant chemical disequilibrium and active, internally driven cycling of volatile elements between the surface, atmosphere and interior. At present, the two planets we know of which possess these characteristics are Earth and Venus. Venus almost surely once had warm, habitable oceans. The evaporation of these oceans, and subsequent escape of hydrogen, most likely resulted in an oxygenated atmosphere. The duration of this phase is poorly understood, but during this time the terrestrial planets were not isolated. Rather, due to frequent impact transport, they represented a continuous environment for early microbial

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Venus Transit 2004

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayo, L. A.; Odenwald, S. F.

    2002-09-01

    December 6th, 1882 was the last transit of the planet Venus across the disk of the sun. It was heralded as an event of immense interest and importance to the astronomical community as well as the public at large. There have been only six such occurrences since Galileo first trained his telescope on the heavens in 1609 and on Venus in 1610 where he concluded that Venus had phases like the moon and appeared to get larger and smaller over time. Many historians consider this the final nail in the coffin of the Ptolemaic, Earth centered solar system. In addition, each transit has provided unique opportunities for discovery such as measurement and refinement of the astronomical unit, calculation of longitudes on the earth, and detection of Venus' atmosphere. The NASA Sun Earth Connection Education Forum in partnership with the Solar System Exploration Forum, DPS, and a number of NASA space missions is developing plans for an international education program centered around the June 8, 2004 Venus transit. The transit will be visible in its entirety from Europe and partially from the East Coast of the United States. We will use a series of robotic observatories including the Telescopes In Education network distributed in latitude to provide observations of the transit that will allow middle and high school students to calculate the A.U. through application of parallax. We will also use Venus transit as a probe of episodes in American history (e.g. 1769: revolutionary era, 1882: post civil war era, and 2004: modern era). Museums and planetariums in the US and Europe will offer real time viewing of the transit and conduct educational programs through professional development seminars, public lectures, and planetarium shows. We are interested in soliciting advice from the research community to coordinate professional research interests with this program.

  6. 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

  7. Entry at Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venkatapathy, Ethiraj; Smith, Brandon

    2016-01-01

    This is lecture to be given at the IPPW 2016, as part of the 2 day course on Short Course on Destination Venus: Science, Technology and Mission Architectures. The attached presentation material is intended to be introduction to entry aspects of Venus in-situ robotic missions. The presentation introduces the audience to the aerodynamic and aerothermodynamic aspects as well as the loads, both aero and thermal, generated during entry. The course touches upon the system design aspects such as TPS design and both high and low ballistic coefficient entry system concepts that allow the science payload to be protected from the extreme entry environment and yet meet the mission objectives.

  8. Ice caps on venus?

    PubMed

    Libby, W F

    1968-03-08

    The data on Venus obtained by Mariner V and Venera 4 are interpreted as evidence of giant polar ice caps holding the water that must have come out of the volcanoes with the observed carbon dioxide, on the assumption that Earth and Venus are of similar composition and volcanic history. The measurements by Venera 4 of the equatorial surface temperature indicate that the microwave readings were high, so that the polar ice caps may be allowed to exist in the face of the 10-centimeter readings of polar temperature. Life seems to be distinctly possible at the edges of the ice sheets.

  9. VIRTIS emissivity of Alpha Regio, Venus, with implications for tessera composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilmore, Martha S.; Mueller, Nils; Helbert, Jörn

    2015-07-01

    The composition of Venus tessera terrain is unknown. The Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) aboard Venus Express (VEx) collects data that yields the surface emissivity at ∼1 μm, which contains information convolving a number of surface properties, including composition. We examine the variation of emissivity in the vicinity of Alpha Regio, which is the largest exposure of tessera terrain imaged by VIRTIS. We find that the emissivity of Alpha Regio tessera is lower than adjacent plains materials and the deposits and flows of Eve corona, both of which have previously been interpreted to be basaltic. The emissivity of the bulk of Alpha is also lower than its western boundary, which is interpreted to comprise plains structurally deformed to the same degree as tessera terrain. This suggests that the lower emissivity of Alpha is independent of structural elements, macroscale roughness, or local sedimentation processes, and is due to material properties like composition or grain size. The deviation of the emissivity of Alpha from that of the plains for which a bulk basaltic composition is well supported corresponds to a significant difference in rock type or surface mineral assemblage. The 1 μm emissivity of Alpha is consistent with rocks with low ferrous iron content. This includes felsic igneous rocks like granitoids that form under either water-rich or water-poor conditions. A water-rich origin would require both a hydrosphere and a plate recycling mechanism and thus be limited to the lifetime of surface water on Venus. Alternatively, granitoids could form via the differentiation of basaltic melts. The production of all tessera terrain by this mechanism would require the accumulation and preservation of felsic melts from a volume of mafic magma that exceeds what is preserved in the currently observed plains. Both mechanisms of granitoid formation would require that tessera terrain be formed prior to the emplacement of the plains, consistent

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Venus in 3D

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Plaut, Jeffrey J.

    1993-01-01

    Stereographic images of the surface of Venus which enable geologists to reconstruct the details of the planet's evolution are discussed. The 120-meter resolution of these 3D images make it possible to construct digital topographic maps from which precise measurements can be made of the heights, depths, slopes, and volumes of geologic structures.

  13. 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.

  14. 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…

  15. The surface of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilevsky, Alexander T.; Head, James W.

    2003-10-01

    Venus is a planet that is similar to Earth in terms of some important planetary parameters (size, mass, position in the solar system, presence of atmosphere) and different in terms of other, equally important ones (absence of an intrinsic magnetic field, large atmospheric mass, carbon dioxide composition of the atmosphere, lack of water, very high surface pressure and temperature). The surface morphology of Venus is dominated by the signatures of basaltic volcanism and tectonic deformation. Other geological processes such as impact cratering, aeolian activity and gravity-driven down-slope mass movement, although active on the planet, are certainly of subordinate significance. Venusian volcanism resulted in the formation of vast regional plains, occupying most of the planet's surface, and in the building of numerous volcanic edifices. Venusian tectonic deformation was both compressional and extensional. Scales and, periodically, rates of Venusian volcanism and tectonism were comparable to those on Earth. But Venus shows no evidence of the global plate-tectonic style so dominant in the geology of Earth. The morphological record seen in the Magellan radar images of Venus extends back into geological history not earlier than about 0.5-1 billion years. It is represented by a sequence of units from highly tectonized tessera and densely fractured plains, whose compositional nature is unclear, through moderately deformed basaltic lava plains, and then to only locally deformed basaltic plains and edifices. In the beginning of the time period during which this sequence formed, the rates of volcanic and tectonic activity were significantly higher than in the subsequent time extending to the present. This change in volcanic and tectonic activity may correspond to a change in the convection style in the mantle of Venus.

  16. Doublet craters on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, Cheryl M.; Melosh, H. Jay; Bottke, William F.

    2003-09-01

    Of the impact craters on Earth larger than 20 km in diameter, 10-15% (3 out of 28) are doublets, having been formed by the simultaneous impact of two well-separated projectiles. The most likely scenario for their formation is the impact of well-separated binary asteroids. If a population of binary asteroids is capable of striking the Earth, it should also be able to hit the other terrestrial planets as well. Venus is a promising planet to search for doublet craters because its surface is young, erosion is nearly nonexistent, and its crater population is significantly larger than the Earth's. After a detailed investigation of single craters separated by less than 150 km and "multiple" craters having diameters greater than 10 km, we found that the proportion of doublet craters on Venus is at most 2.2%, significantly smaller than Earth's, although several nearly incontrovertible doublets were recognized. We believe this apparent deficit relative to the Earth's doublet population is a consequence of atmospheric screening of small projectiles on Venus rather than a real difference in the population of impacting bodies. We also examined "splotches," circular radar reflectance features in the Magellan data. Projectiles that are too small to form craters probably formed these features. After a careful study of these patterns, we believe that the proportion of doublet splotches on Venus (14%) is comparable to the proportion of doublet craters found on Earth (10-15%). Thus, given the uncertainties of interpretation and the statistics of small numbers, it appears that the doublet crater population on Venus is consistent with that of the Earth.

  17. Sampling the Cloudtop Region on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay; Ashish, Kumar; Alam, Mofeez; Landis, Geoffrey; Widemann, Thomas; Kremic, Tibor

    2014-05-01

    The details of the cloud structure on Venus continue to be elusive. One of the main questions is the nature and identity of the ultraviolet absorber(s). Remote sensing observations from Venus Express have provided much more information about the ubiquitous cloud cover on Venus from both reflected and emitted radiation from Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) and Visible InfraRed Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) observations. Previously, only the Pioneer Venus Large Probe has measured the size distribution of the cloud particles, and other probes have measured the bulk optical properties of the cloud cover. However, the direct sampling of the clouds has been possible only below about 62 km, whereas the recent Venus Express observations indicate that the cloud tops extend from about 75 km in equatorial region to about 67 km in polar regions. To sample the cloud top region of Venus, other platforms are required. An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has been proposed previously (Landis et al., 2002). Another that is being looked into, is a semi-buoyant aerial vehicle that can be powered using solar cells and equipped with instruments to not only sample the cloud particles, but also to make key atmospheric measurements - e.g. atmospheric composition including isotopic abundances of noble and other gases, winds and turbulence, deposition of solar and infrared radiation, electrical activity. The conceptual design of such a vehicle can carry a much more massive payload than any other platform, and can be controlled to sample different altitudes and day and night hemispheres. Thus, detailed observations of the surface using a miniature Synthetic Aperture Radar are possible. Data relay to Earth will need an orbiter, preferably in a low inclination orbit, depending on the latitude region selected for emphasis. Since the vehicle has a large surface area, thermal loads on entry are low, enabling deployment without the use of an aeroshell. Flight characteristics of such a vehicle have been

  18. Second Venus spacecraft set for launch

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    The launch phase of the Pioneer Venus Multiprobe spacecraft and cruise phases of both the Pioneer Venus Orbiter and the Multiprobe spacecraft are covered. Material pertinent to the Venus encounter is included.

  19. On the possibility of microbiota transfer from Venus to Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wickramasinghe, N. C.; Wickramasinghe, J. T.

    2008-09-01

    The possibility of the clouds of Venus providing habitats for extremophilic microorganisms has been discussed for several decades. We show here that the action of the solar wind leads to erosion of parts of the atmosphere laden with aerosols and putative microorganisms, forming a comet-like tail in the antisolar direction. During inferior conjunctions that coincide with transits of the planet Venus this comet-like tail intersects the Earth’s magnetopause and injects aerosol particles. Data from ESA’s Venus Express spacecraft and from SOHO are used to discuss the ingress of bacteria from Venus into the Earth’s atmosphere, which we estimate as ˜1011 1013 cells for each transit event.

  20. Analysis of high-altitude planetary ion velocity space distributions detected by the Ion Mass Analyzer aboard Mars Express

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, B. C.; Liemohn, M. W.; Fraenz, M.; Curry, S.; Mitchell, D. L.

    2012-12-01

    We present observations of planetary ion velocity space distributions from the Ion Mass Analyzer (IMA) onboard Mars Express (MEX). The magnetometer data from Mars Global Surveyor is used to obtain a rough estimate of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) orientation. Characteristic features of the velocity space distributions will be examined and discussed for orbits aligned with the convective electric field and those in the Mars terminator plane. This study will focus on the high (keV) energy ions, as well as the relative importance of a high-altitude magnetosheath source of escaping planetary ions. Furthermore, this paper will examine various methods for converting the IMA detector counts to species-specific fluxes. After mimicking the methods previously used by researchers, we apply each of these methods of species extraction to data collected during the same time intervals. We discuss the implications for planetary ion motion around Mars, using the details of the velocity space observations to better understand the solar wind interaction with Mars. Comparisons to virtual detections using a test particle simulation will also provide insight into ion origins and trajectories.

  1. 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

  2. Tectonics and composition of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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 cosmo-chemical explanation. There may be no need to invoke differences in composition or oxidization state.

  3. The new face of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stofan, Ellen R.

    1993-01-01

    The Magellan data on the Venus landscape which revealed volcanoes, shining mountains, relaxing plateaus, and craters on the surface of about 500 C, with an atmospheric pressure 90 times that of earth, are discussed. Venus is considered to be a planet that is both incredibly similar and dissimilar to earth. Venus might not exhibit plate tectonism but it might be dominated by catastrophes. The greenhouse around Venus has operated for at least the last 500 million years. The Magellan data revealed channels extending for thousands of kilometers, beautiful outflows surrounding impact craters, and odd volcanic constructs like the steep-sided domes.

  4. ESA Venus Entry Probe Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    vandenBerg, M. L.; Falkner, P.; Phipps, A.; Underwood, J. C.; Lingard, J. S.; Moorhouse, J.; Kraft, S.; Peacock, A.

    2005-01-01

    The Venus Entry Probe is one of ESA s Technology Reference Studies (TRS). The purpose of the Technology Reference Studies is to provide a focus for the development of strategically important technologies that are of likely relevance for future scientific missions. The aim of the Venus Entry Probe TRS is to study approaches for low cost in-situ exploration of Venus and other planetary bodies with a significant atmosphere. In this paper, the mission objectives and an outline of the mission concept of the Venus Entry Probe TRS are presented.

  5. The Oldest Rocks on Venus: the Importance of Tessera Terrain for Venus Exploration (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilmore, M. S.; Glaze, L. S.

    2013-12-01

    Venus tessera terrain is a major, yet unsampled, tectonic unit on Venus characterized by multiple sets of intersecting compressional and extensional structures. Tessera terrain is temporally, morphologically, and perhaps also compositionally unique on Venus. Stratigraphic studies of tessera terrain establish that they consistently appear locally, and perhaps even globally, as the oldest material on a planet with an average surface crater retention age of ~500 million years. Thus, the tesserae provide the best chance to access rocks that are derived from the first 80% of the history of the planet, an era obscured by the emplacement of voluminous (presumably basaltic) plains. Analysis of Magellan imagery, topography and gravity data show that tessera terrain is characterized by higher strain rates and a thinner lithosphere than at present and thus records an extinct geodynamical era on Venus. Yet very little is understood about the number, morphology and stratigraphy of geologic units within tessera terrain, nor mass wasting processes operating on the surface. Improved radar imagery at the 5-25 m scale, and optical images below the clouds (<1 km) and at the surface will help assess the geologic processes operating in the pre-plains era. Such data products are also essential for judicious landing site selection, since tessera meter-scale roughness will limit landing site safety and sample access. Improved topography data are required to quantify the deformation recorded by ubiquitous tesserae structures that are finer than Magellan resolution. Tessera terrain is unsampled, but recent analyses of radiance from the surface at 1 micron using instruments on Venus Express and Galileo are consistent with felsic compositions for tesserae. Silicic compositions likely require both water and a plate recycling mechanism (e.g., subduction) for formation. The high D/H ratio of the Venus atmosphere is consistent with the loss of a significant inventory of water over the history of

  6. 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.

  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. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Venus behind the clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raitala, J.; Tormanen, T.; Kauhanen, K.

    Magellan radar orbiter began its imaging task last Autumn. Its Synthetic Aperture Radar allows the surface of Venus be studied from the registered echoes. The 120 m per pixel resolution is 20 to 1000 times better than that of previous Venera 15/16 and Pioneer Venus orbiters, repectively. This year most of the Cytherean surface will be imaged by Magellan. Recent radar images reveal that surface of Venus displays evidences of strong endogenic activity. Volcanism has been important on lowlands which are resurfaced by extrusives in 0.1 to 1 times 10 to the 9th power years. Volcanic domes are abundant and there are also calderas formed by magma reservoir roof collapses. Fault systems are regular over wide areas with major grabens being 100 m to 10 km wide and 200 to 300 km long. Lavas and gas particle flows have been extremely low viscous causing stream like structures. On leeward sides of some volcanic pits there are wind deposits. Most of the impact craters are fresh looking with their interiors filled by radar dark lavas. Some small impact craters are unsymmetric due to the effects of dense atmosphere during fall and impact explosion.

  11. A bulk cloud parameterization in a Venus General Circulation Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Christopher; Lewis, Stephen R.; Read, Peter L.

    2010-04-01

    A condensing cloud parameterization is included in a super-rotating Venus General Circulation Model. A parameterization including condensation, evaporation and sedimentation of mono-modal sulfuric acid cloud particles is described. Saturation vapor pressure of sulfuric acid vapor is used to determine cloud formation through instantaneous condensation and destruction through evaporation, while pressure dependent viscosity of a carbon dioxide atmosphere is used to determine sedimentation rates assuming particles fall at their terminal Stokes velocity. Modifications are described to account for the large range of the Reynolds number seen in the Venus atmosphere. Two GCM experiments initialized with 10 ppm-equivalent of sulfuric acid are integrated for 30 Earth years and the results are discussed with reference to "Y" shaped cloud structures observed on Venus. The GCM is able to produce an analog of the "Y" shaped cloud structure through dynamical processes alone, with contributions from the mean westward wind, the equatorial Kelvin wave, and the mid-latitude/polar Mixed Rossby/Gravity waves. The cloud top height in the GCM decreases from equator to pole and latitudinal gradients of cloud top height are comparable to those observed by Pioneer Venus and Venus Express, and those produced in more complex microphysical models of the sulfur cycle on Venus. Differences between the modeled cloud structures and observations are described and dynamical explanations are suggested for the most prominent differences.

  12. On the Ionospheric Holes of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collinson, G.; Fedorov, A.; Futaana, Y.; Masunaga, K.; Hartle, R. E.; Stenberg, G.; Budnik, E.; Grebowsky, J. M.; Holmstrom, M.; andre, N.; Barabash, S. V.; Zhang, T.

    2013-12-01

    One of the most intriguing unsolved mysteries that endures from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter is that of ~1000km wide ``Holes" in the nightside Ionosphere. The phenomena remains unexplained, despite their frequent observation during the first three years of the mission, and more than thirty years having elapsed since their first description in the literature. We present new observations by the ESA Venus Express of Ionospheric Holes at very high altitudes, providing us with the opportunity to study this fascinating phenomena with modern instrumentation. We discuss the insight that these new data give us into the effect of Ionospheric Holes on atmospheric escape, and the evidence that suggests that Ionospheric Holes are due to an internal planetary magnetic field.

  13. 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

  14. Venus: Water and Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ditkof, J. F.

    2013-05-01

    Amphiboles that contain the hydroxide ion form only in the presence of water and this fact has become the way for scientists to prove that Venus was once a water world. Though, tremolite is considered the main mineral to look for, it requires life that is analogous to the ancient life here on Earth for it to form. Dolomite is the main ingredient for the formation of this low grade metamorphic mineral and without it would be very difficult for tremolite to form, unless there is another process that is unknown to science. Venus is known to have extensive volcanic features (over 1600 confirmed shield volcanoes dot its surface) and with little erosion taking place; a mineral that is associated with volcanism and forms only in the presence of water should be regarded as the main goal. Hornblende can form via volcanism or a metamorphic process but requires water for initial formation. The European Space Agency is currently trying to determine whether or not the continents on Venus' surface are made of granite, as they argue granite requires water for formation. Either way, computer models suggest that any oceans that formed on the surface would have lasted at best 2 billion years, as the surface is estimated to be only 800 million years old, any hornblende that would have formed is more than likely going to be deep underground. To find this mineral, as well as others, it would require a mission that has the ability to drill into the surface, as the easiest place to do this would be on the mountain peaks in the Northern Hemisphere on the Ishtar Terra continent. Through the process of uplift, any remaining hornblende may have been exposed or very near exposed to the surface. Do to the amount of fluorine in the atmosphere and the interaction between this and the lithosphere, the hydroxyl ions may have been replaced with fluorine turning the hornblende into the more stable fluoro-hornblende. To further add to the mystery of Venus is the unusual atmospheric composition. The

  15. 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.

  16. Venus: Interaction with Solar Wind

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russell, C.; Luhmann, J.; Murdin, P.

    2002-07-01

    The solar wind interaction with VENUS provides the archetypal interaction of a flowing magnetized PLASMA with a PLANETARY IONOSPHERE. Mars interacts with the solar wind in much the same way as does Venus, while the rotating plasma in the Saturnian magnetosphere is believed to interact similarly with its moon, Titan (see SATURN: MAGNETOSPHERE INTERACTION WITH TITAN). The interaction of the Jovian ...

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Magellan: The unveiling of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the United States and the Soviet Union sent the Pioneer Venus and Venera spacecraft, respectively, to study Venus more closely and to image its surface with radar. These missions have answered many questions about Venus, but many more questions remain unanswered about the extent to which Venus' surface was shaped by volcanoes, plate tectonics, impact craters, and water and wind erosion. To help answer these remaining questions a new radar imaging spacecraft Magellan will be launched from the Space Shuttle. Magellan will spend eight months mapping most of the planet at a resolution nearly ten times better than any previous views of the surface. The mission of Magellan, the radar equipment, orbiting of Venus, planetary imaging, and surface exploration are discussed.

  20. Hydroxyl airglow on Venus in comparison with Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-08-01

    Hydroxyl nightglow is intensively studied in the Earth atmosphere, due to its coupling to the ozone cycle. Recently, it was detected for the first time also in the Venus atmosphere, thanks to the VIRTIS-Venus Express observations. The main Δ ν=1, 2 emissions in the infrared spectral range, centred, respectively, at 2.81 and 1.46 μm (which correspond to the (1-0) and (2-0) transitions, respectively), were observed in limb geometry ( Piccioni et al., 2008) with a mean emission rate of 880±90 and 100±40 kR (1R=10 6 photon cm -2 s -1 (4 πster) -1), respectively, integrated along the line of sight. In this investigation, the Bates-Nicolet chemical reaction is reported to be the most probable mechanism for OH production on Venus, as in the case of Earth, but HO 2 and O may still be not negligible as mechanism of production for OH, differently than Earth. The nightglow emission from OH provides a method to quantify O 3, HO 2, H and O, and to infer the mechanism of transport of the key species involved in the production. Very recently, an ozone layer was detected in the upper atmosphere of Venus by the SPICAV (Spectroscopy for Investigation of Characteristics of the Atmosphere of Venus) instrument onboard Venus Express ( Montmessin et al., 2009); this discovery enhances the importance of ozone to the OH production in the upper atmosphere of Venus through the Bates-Nicolet mechanism. On Venus, OH airglow is observed only in the night side and no evidence has been found whether a similar emission exists also in the day side. On Mars it is expected to exist both on the day and night sides of the planet, because of the presence of ozone, though OH airglow has not yet been detected. In this paper, we review and compare the OH nightglow on Venus and Earth. The case of Mars is also briefly discussed for the sake of completeness. Similarities from a chemical and a dynamical point of view are listed, though visible OH emissions on Earth and IR OH emissions on Venus are

  1. Aboard the Space Shuttle.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steinberg, Florence S.

    This 32-page pamphlet contains color photographs and detailed diagrams which illustrate general descriptive comments about living conditions aboard the space shuttle. Described are details of the launch, the cabin, the condition of weightlessness, food, sleep, exercise, atmosphere, personal hygiene, medicine, going EVA (extra-vehicular activity),…

  2. Ion escape from Venus using statistical distribution functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordstrom, T.; Stenberg, G.; Nilsson, H.; Barabash, S.; Futaana, Y.

    2012-04-01

    We use more than three years of data from the ASPERA-4 instrument onboard Venus Express to compile statistical distribution functions of ion flux in and around induced magnetosphere of Venus. We present samples of statistical distribution functions, as well average flux patterns in the near Venus space based on the statistical distribution functions. The statistical distribution functions allows for a compensation of biased sampling regarding both position and angular coverage of the instrument. Protons and heavy ions (mass/charge > 16) are the major ion species escaping from Venus. The escape is due to acceleration of planetary ions by energy transfer from the solar wind. The ion escape appears to exclusively take place in the induced magnetotail region and no heavy ions are present in the magnetosheath. Protons of solar wind origin are travelling around the planet and penetrating the tail, resulting in a mix of planetary and solar wind protons inside the induced magnetosphere boundary. The escape rates of ions inside the tail agree with results from recent published studies, where other analysis methods have been used. We also compare our results for Venus with a recent study of ion escape from Mars, where the same analysis method has been applied to data from the ASPERA-3 instrument on Mars Express. Both Mars and Venus are unmagnetized planets and are expected to interact similarly with the solar wind. On Mars the heavy ions are seen escaping in both the magnetosheath and tail regions as opposed to Venus where escape only takes place inside the tail. A possible explanation is that the magnetosphere of Mars is smaller compared to the ion gyroradius, making it easier for the ions to pass through the induced magnetosphere boundary. On both planets the escape rates of heavy ions in the tail are constant with increasing tail distance, verifying that the ions are leaving the planet in this region.

  3. Ionospheric photoelectrons: Comparing Venus, Earth, Mars and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coates, A. J.; Tsang, S. M. E.; Wellbrock, A.; Frahm, R. A.; Winningham, J. D.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.; Young, D. T.; Crary, F. J.

    2011-08-01

    The sunlit portion of planetary ionospheres is sustained by photoionization. This was first confirmed using measurements and modelling at Earth, but recently the Mars Express, Venus Express and Cassini-Huygens missions have revealed the importance of this process at Mars, Venus and Titan, respectively. The primary neutral atmospheric constituents involved (O and CO 2 in the case of Venus and Mars, O and N 2 in the case of Earth and N 2 in the case of Titan) are ionized at each object by EUV solar photons. This process produces photoelectrons with particular spectral characteristics. The electron spectrometers on Venus Express and Mars Express (part of ASPERA-3 and 4, respectively) were designed with excellent energy resolution (Δ E/ E=8%) specifically in order to examine the photoelectron spectrum. In addition, the Cassini CAPS electron spectrometer at Saturn also has adequate resolution (Δ E/ E=16.7%) to study this population at Titan. At Earth, photoelectrons are well established by in situ measurements, and are even seen in the magnetosphere at up to 7 RE. At Mars, photoelectrons are seen in situ in the ionosphere, but also in the tail at distances out to the Mars Express apoapsis (˜3 RM). At both Venus and Titan, photoelectrons are seen in situ in the ionosphere and in the tail (at up to 1.45 RV and 6.8 RT, respectively). Here, we compare photoelectron measurements at Earth, Venus, Mars and Titan, and in particular show examples of their observation at remote locations from their production point in the dayside ionosphere. This process is found to be common between magnetized and unmagnetized objects. We discuss the role of photoelectrons as tracers of the magnetic connection to the dayside ionosphere, and their possible role in enhancing ion escape.

  4. Ionospheric photoelectrons: comparing Venus, Earth, Mars and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coates, Andrew; Tsang, Sharon; Wellbrock, Anne; Frahm, Rudy; Winningham, David; Barabash, Stas; Lundin, Rickard; Young, David; Crary, Frank

    2010-05-01

    The sunlit portion of planetary ionospheres is sustained by photoionization. This was first confirmed using measurements and modelling at Earth, but recently the Mars Express, Venus Express and Cassini-Huygens missions have revealed the importance of this process at Mars, Venus and Titan respectively. The primary neutral atmospheric constituents (CO2 in the case of Venus and Mars, and N2 in the case of Earth and Titan) are ionized at each object by EUV solar photons. This process produces photoelectrons with particular spectral characteristics. The electron spectrometers on Venus Express and Mars Express (part of ASPERA-3 and 4 respectively) were designed with excellent energy resolution (ΔE/E=8%) specifically in order to examine the photoelectron spectrum. In addition, the CAPS electron spectrometer at Saturn also has adequate resolution (ΔE/E=16.7%) to study this population at Titan. At Earth, photoelectrons are well established by in-situ measurements, and are even seen in the magnetosphere at up to 7 RE. At Mars, photoelectrons are seen in situ in the ionosphere but also in the tail at distances out to the Mars Express apoapsis (~3RM). At both Venus and Titan, photoelectrons are seen in situ in the ionosphere and in the tail (at up to 1.45 RV and 6.8 RT respectively). Here, we compare photoelectron measurements at Earth, Venus, Mars and Titan. We discuss their role as a tracer of the magnetic connection to the dayside ionosphere, and their possible role in enhancing ion escape.

  5. The Pioneer Venus Orbiter entry phase

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strangeway, R. J.

    1993-01-01

    In October, 1992 the Pioneer Venus Orbiter entered the atmosphere of Venus, ending nearly 14 years of observations at Venus. Prior to the entry into the atmosphere and subsequent loss of the spacecraft careful management of spacecraft resources had allowed the acquisition of much low altitude data over the nightside of the planet. The long duration of the Pioneer Venus mission has enabled us to study the ionosphere and atmosphere of Venus under different levels of solar activity.

  6. Pioneer Venus gas chromatography of the lower atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oyama, V. I.; Carle, G. C.; Woeller, F.; Pollack, J. B.; Reynolds, R. T.; Craig, R. A.

    1980-01-01

    A gas chromatograph mounted in the Pioneer Venus sounder probe measured the chemical composition of the atmosphere of Venus at three altitudes. Ne, N2, O2, Ar, CO, H2O, SO2, and CO2 were measured, and upper limits set for H2, COS, H2S, CH4, Kr, N2O, C2H4, C2H6, and C3H8. Simulation studies have provided indirect evidence for sulfuric acid-like droplets and support the possibility of water vapor at altitudes of 42 and 24 km. The paper discusses the implications of these results for the origin, evolution, and present state of Venus' atmosphere.

  7. Ultra-Low-Frequency Waves at Venus and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.

    2016-02-01

    Mars and Venus have no global magnetic field. The solar wind interacts directly with their ionospheres and atmospheres, inducing magnetospheres by a pileup of the interplanetary magnetic field. The first measurements of the ultra-low-frequency activity on Mars were made by the Phobos-2 spacecraft. This chapter investigates the wave observations recently supplied by the Mars Global Surveyor, Venus Express, and Mars Express. Coherent wave structures are a typical feature of the Martian magnetosheath. It is likely that the periodic compressional waves generated upstream of the bow shock are transported to the magnetosheath. At Venus, there has often been observed a penetration of the field oscillations downward to the ionosphere. Periodic oscillations of the escaping oxygen ions were typically observed in the Martian tail by MEX. It seems reasonable to suggest that the observed oscillations take their origin in the foreshock/magnetosheath and then propagate to the ionosphere and further to the tail.

  8. Plasma vortices, lateral forcing, and the superrotating Venus atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lundin, R.; Barabash, S.; Futaana, S.; Holmstrom, M.; Perez-de-Tejada, H.; Sauvaud, J.-A.

    2012-04-01

    New observations from Venus Express (VEX) show the existence of a large-scale vortex-like ion flow pattern in the Venus plasma tail. The flow pattern is characterized by besides a dominating antisunward flow, also a lateral flow component of solar wind (H+) and ionospheric (O+) ions. The lateral flow component is directed opposite to the Venus orbital motion. A test of the energy and momentum balance between solar wind H+ and ionospheric O+ indicates that the energy and momentum delivered to O+ is proportional to the loss of energy and momentum by solar wind H+. The combined antisunward and lateral H+ and O+ flow wraps over the planetary atmosphere, from the terminator into the nightside. The net lateral flow near Venus is in the direction of the Venus atmospheric superrotation. Further down in the Venus plasma tail the flow display a circular motion around the central tail axis. The general agreement in direction between the nightside ion flow over the Northern hemisphere, and the retrograde motion of the Venus atmosphere, implies a cause-effect relation between the ionospheric O+ flow and the atmospheric neutral flow. This underlying connection is further strengthened by the fact the the O+ flow velocity in the 200-300 km altitude range follows the same power law curve as that fitted to the atmospheric zonal wind velocity profile [1]. The combined ion + neutral wind profile therefore implies momentum balance between the ionospheric and atmospheric retrograde flow. The fact that the O+ flow is driven by solar wind forcing leaves us with the question: Is the superrotating upper atmosphere at Venus a consequence of solar wind forcing? Is the ion flow capable of accelerating, and maintaining, a superrotating upper atmosphere at Venus? Combining ion data [2] with a fluid dynamic model of the energy and momentum transfer of ions to neutrals we find that this is certainly possible. The ionospheric O+ energy and momentum observed is sufficient to accelerate, and maintain

  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' rotation and atmospheric tides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ingersoll, A. P.; Dobrovolskis, A. R.

    1978-01-01

    On the basis of a presented theory, it is suggested that Venus' current rotation is a stable balance between atmospheric and solar body tides. The theory is concerned with Venus' atmospheric tides, driven by solar heating, and how these tides could serve as a third torque to balance the effects of solar body torque and to maintain a stable equilibrium resonance with regard to the earth's gravitational effects. In the absence of the atmospheric tidal torque, or some other torque, it would be expected that Venus would be despun until synchronous rotation (one side always facing the sun) is attained, rather than retain the retrograde rotation period of 243 days.

  11. The 2012 Transit of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deans, P.

    2012-08-01

    On June 5-6, 2012, much of the world will experience an event that will not occur again for another 105 years - a transit of Venus. During the 18th and 19th centuries, astronomers made arduous trips to remote corners of Earth to make Venus transit observations in an attempt to calculate the Earth-Sun distance. Today a transit of Venus is simply a rare spectacle. But it is important to take care when viewing it, because observing the Sun is dangerous if proper filters for eye protection are not used.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Soybean Growth Aboard ISS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This is a photo of soybeans growing in the Advanced Astroculture (ADVASC) Experiment aboard the International Space Station (ISS). The ADVASC experiment was one of the several new experiments and science facilities delivered to the ISS by Expedition Five aboard the Space Shuttle Orbiter Endeavor STS-111 mission. An agricultural seed company will grow soybeans in the ADVASC hardware to determine whether soybean plants can produce seeds in a microgravity environment. Secondary objectives include determination of the chemical characteristics of the seed in space and any microgravity impact on the plant growth cycle. Station science will also be conducted by the ever-present ground crew, with a new cadre of controllers for Expedition Five in the ISS Payload Operations Control Center (POCC) at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. Controllers work in three shifts around the clock, 7 days a week, in the POCC, the world's primary science command post for the Space Station. The POCC links Earth-bound researchers around the world with their experiments and crew aboard the Space Station.

  16. Return to Venus of the Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter AKATSUKI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Masato; Kawakatsu, Yasuhiro; Hirose, Chikako; Imamura, Takeshi; Ishii, Nobuaki; Abe, Takumi; Yamazaki, Atsushi; Yamada, Manabu; Ogohara, Kazunori; Uemizu, Kazunori; Fukuhara, Tetsuya; Ohtsuki, Shoko; Satoh, Takehiko; Suzuki, Makoto; Ueno, Munetaka; Nakatsuka, Junichi; Iwagami, Naomoto; Taguchi, Makoto; Watanabe, Shigeto; Takahashi, Yukihiro; Hashimoto, George L.; Yamamoto, Hiroki

    2014-01-01

    Japanese Venus Climate Orbiter/AKATSUKI was proposed in 2001 with strong support by international Venus science community and approved as an ISAS (The Institute of Space and Astronautical Science) mission soon after the proposal. The mission life we expected was more than two Earth years in Venus orbit. AKATSUKI was successfully launched at 06:58:22JST on May 21, 2010, 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' deployment was confirmed. After a successful cruise, the malfunction happened on the propulsion system during the Venus orbit insertion (VOI) on Dec. 7, 2010. The engine shut down before the planned reduction in speed to achieve. The spacecraft did not enter the Venus orbit but entered an orbit around the Sun with a period of 203 days. Most of the fuel still had remained, but the orbital maneuvering engine was found to be broken and unusable. However, we have found an alternate way of achieving orbit by using only the reaction control system (RSC). We had adopted the alternate way for orbital maneuver and three minor maneuvers in Nov. 2011 were successfully done so that AKATSUKI would meet Venus in 2015. We are considering several scenarios for VOI using only RCS.

  17. Chemical reactions between Venus' surface and atmosphere - An update. (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treiman, A. H.

    2013-12-01

    The surface of Venus, at ~740K, is hot enough to allow relatively rapid chemical reactions between it and the atmosphere, i.e. weathering. Venus chemical weathering has been explored in detail [1], to the limits of available data. New data from Venus Express (VEx) and new ideas from exoplanets have sparked a modest renewal of interest in Venus weathering. Venus' surface cannot be observed in visible light, but there are several NIR ';windows' through its atmosphere that allow surface imaging. The VIRTIS spectrometer on VEx viewed the surface through one window [2]; emissivity variations among lava flows on Imdr and Themis Regios have been explained as varying degrees of weathering, and thus age [3]. The VMC camera on VEx also provides images through a NIR window, which suggest variable degrees of weathering on some basaltic plains [4]. Indirect evidence for weathering may come from varying SO2 abundance at Venus' cloud tops; repeated rapid increases and gradual declines may represent volcanic eruptions followed by weathering to form sulfate minerals [5]. Continued geochemical modeling relevant to Venus weathering is motivated by expolanet studies [6]. Models have been extended to hypothetical exo-Venuses of different temperatures and surface compositions [7]. The idea that Venus' atmosphere composition can be buffered by reaction with its surface was explored in detail, and the derived constraint extended to other types of planets [8]. Several laboratories are investigating Venus weathering, motivated in part by the hope that they can provide real constraints on timescales of Venus volcanism [3]. Aveline et al. [9] are extending early studies [10] by reacting rocks and minerals with concentrated SO2 (to accelerate reaction rates to allow detectability of products). Kohler et al. [11] are investigating the stability of metals and chalcogenides as possible causes of the low-emissivity surfaces at high elevations. Berger and Aigouy [12] studied rock alteration on a

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. ISS Update: Transit of Venus

    NASA Video Gallery

    ISS Update commentator Brandi Dean interviews Mario Runco, NASA astronaut, about Venus's transit across the sun on June 5, 2012. Questions? Ask us on Twitter @NASA_Johnson and include the hashtag #...

  1. Venus Heat Flow Instrument Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pauken, M.; Smith, K.; Sujittosakul, S.; Li, B.; Firdosy, S.; Smrekar, S.; Morgan, P.

    2016-10-01

    A heat flux measurement instrument is being developed to determine the heat flow through the Venus surface. Heat flow measurement provides data for distinguishing between various hypotheses of planetary evolution.

  2. Venus Atmosphere and Surface Explorer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esposito, Larry W.; Hall, Jeff; Schofield, Tim

    2014-11-01

    ContextVenus is Earth’s twin planet, but it is an evil twin! To understand how Venus went wrong, to understand the terrestrial planets in our Solar System, those around other stars, and the future of the Earth… we must understand Venus history, evolution and current processes. This requires entering the Venus atmosphere and examining its surface. Future missions will land on Venus, but they need better characterization of its atmosphere and of possible landing sites. VASE can build on discoveries from previous missions, on technical advances in the last decades and on improved balloon technology. The hybrid mission links together a single vertical profile with two weeks of temporal and longitudinal data on a global scale. We can investigate the linked surface and atmosphere processes. We will measure the noble gases which retain indicators of Venus formation; clouds, winds, and chemistry that drive the current Venus processes; and take descent images that extend the Magellan RADAR results to sub-1m resolution, providing ground truth for Magellan’s global mapping and to characterize possible future landing sites.Science Objectives VASE will measure the complete inventory of atmospheric noble gas and light stable isotopes to constrain theories of planetary formation and evolution. It will take nested surface images on descent. It will provide the first complete atmospheric structure profile from clouds to surface of temperature, pressure and wind. VASE will measure with critical accuracy the trace and reactive gas composition profile from clouds to surface. VASE will map the surface emissivity along the surface below two balloon circumnavigations of Venus.Mission VASE is a hybrid Venus mission consisting of a large balloon and a small probe. It reaches Venus after a 4 month trip from Earth. The probe deploys from the entry vehicle and falls to surface in 1.5 hours. The balloon mission lasts 2 weeks, flying in the clouds at 55 km and circumnavigating Venus twice

  3. 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.

  4. The structure of Venus' middle atmosphere and ionosphere.

    PubMed

    Pätzold, M; Häusler, B; Bird, M K; Tellmann, S; Mattei, R; Asmar, S W; Dehant, V; Eidel, W; Imamura, T; Simpson, R A; Tyler, G L

    2007-11-29

    The atmosphere and ionosphere of Venus have been studied in the past by spacecraft with remote sensing or in situ techniques. These early missions, however, have left us with questions about, for example, the atmospheric structure in the transition region from the upper troposphere to the lower mesosphere (50-90 km) and the remarkably variable structure of the ionosphere. Observations become increasingly difficult within and below the global cloud deck (<50 km altitude), where strong absorption greatly limits the available investigative spectrum to a few infrared windows and the radio range. Here we report radio-sounding results from the first Venus Express Radio Science (VeRa) occultation season. We determine the fine structure in temperatures at upper cloud-deck altitudes, detect a distinct day-night temperature difference in the southern middle atmosphere, and track day-to-day changes in Venus' ionosphere.

  5. Crustal deformation: Earth vs Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Turcotte, D. L.

    1989-01-01

    It is timely to consider the possible tectonic regimes on Venus both in terms of what is known about Venus and in terms of deformation mechanisms operative on the earth. Plate tectonic phenomena dominate tectonics on the earth. Horizontal displacements are associated with the creation of new crust at ridges and destruction of crust at trenches. The presence of plate tectonics on Venus is debated, but there is certainly no evidence for the trenches associated with subduction on the earth. An essential question is what kind of tectonics can be expected if there is no plate tectonics on Venus. Mars and the Moon are reference examples. Volcanic constructs appear to play a dominant role on Mars but their role on Venus is not clear. On single plate planets and satellites, tectonic structures are often associated with thermal stresses. Cooling of a planet leads to thermal contraction and surface compressive features. Delamination has been propsed for Venus by several authors. Delamination is associated with the subduction of the mantle lithosphere and possibly the lower crust but not the upper crust. The surface manifestations of delamination are unclear. There is some evidence that delamination is occurring beneath the Transverse Ranges in California. Delamination will certainly lead to lithospheric thinning and is likely to lead to uplift and crustal thinning.

  6. Venus - First Radar Test

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    After traveling more than 1.5 billion kilometers (948 million miles), the Magellan spacecraft was inserted into orbit around Venus on Aug. 10, 1990. This mosaic consists of adjacent pieces of two Magellan image strips obtained on Aug. 16 in the first radar test. The radar test was part of a planned In Orbit Checkout sequence designed to prepare the Magellan spacecraft and radar to begin mapping after Aug. 31. The strip on the left was returned to the Goldstone Deep Space Network station in California; the strip to the right was received at the DSN in Canberra, Australia. A third station that will be receiving Magellan data is located near Madrid, Spain. Each image strip is 20 km (12 miles) wide and 16,000 km (10,000 miles) long. This mosaic is a small portion 80 km (50 miles) long. This image is centered at 21 degrees north latitude and 286.8 degrees east longitude, southeast of a volcanic highland region called Beta Regio. The resolution of the image is about 120 meters (400 feet), 10 times better than previous images of the same area of Venus, revealing many new geologic features. The bright line trending northwest southeast across the center of the image is a fracture or fault zone cutting the volcanic plains. In the upper left corner of the image, a multiple ring circular feature of probable volcanic origin can be seen, approximately 4.27 km (2.65 miles) across. The bright and dark variations seen in the plains surrounding these features correspond to volcanic lava flows of varying ages. The volcanic lava flows in the southern half of the image have been cut by north south trending faults. This area is similar geologically to volcanic deposits seen on Earth at Hawaii and the Snake River Plains in Idaho.

  7. The spatial distribution of coronae on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Squyres, S. W.; Schubert, G.; Bindschadler, D. L.; Janes, D. M.; Moersch, J. E.; Moore, W.; Olson, P.; Ratcliff, J. T.; Stofan, E. R.; Turcotte, D. L.

    1992-01-01

    Coronae on Venus are large, generally circular surface features that have distinctive tectonic, volcanic, and topographic expressions. They range in diameter from less than 200 km to at least 1000 km. Data from the Magellan spacecraft have now allowed complete global mapping of the spatial distribution of coronae on the planet. Unlike impact craters, which show a random (i.e., Poisson) spatial distribution, the distribution of coronae appears to be nonrandom. We investigate the distribution here in detail, and explore its implications in terms of mantle convection and surface modification processes.

  8. Storms on Venus: Lightning-induced chemistry and predicted products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delitsky, M. L.; Baines, K. H.

    2015-08-01

    Observations by many spacecraft that have visited Venus over the last 40 years appear to confirm the presence of lightning storms in the Venus atmosphere. Recent observations by Venus Express indicate that lightning frequency and power is similar to that on Earth. While storms are occurring, energy deposition by lightning into Venus atmospheric constituents will immediately dissociate molecules into atoms, ions and plasma from the high temperatures in the lightning column (>30,000 K) and the associated shock waves and heating, after which these atom and ion fragments of C,O,S,N,H-containing molecules will recombine during cooldown to form new sets of molecules. Spark and discharge experiments in the literature suggest that lightning effects on the main atmospheric molecules CO2, N2, SO2, H2SO4 and H2O will yield carbon oxides and suboxides (COm, CnOm), sulfur oxides (SnO, SnOm), oxygen (O2), elemental sulfur (Sn), nitrogen oxides (NO, N2O, NO2), sulfuric acid clusters (HnSmOx-.aHnSmOx e.g. HSO4-.mH2SO4), polysulfur oxides, carbon soot and other exotic species. While the amounts generated in lightning storms would be much less than that derived from photochemistry, during storms these species can build up in a small area and so their local concentrations may increase significantly. For a storm of 100×100 km, the increase could be ~5 orders of magnitude if they remain in the storm region for a period before becoming well-mixed. Some of these molecular species may be detectable by instruments onboard Venus Express while they are concentrated in the storm regions. We explore the diversity of new products likely created in lightning storms on Venus.

  9. 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.

  10. Venus Atmospheric Maneuverable Platform (VAMP)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-04-01

    Over the past years 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), semibuoyant 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. VAMP targets the global Venus atmosphere between 55 and 70 km altitude and would be a platform to address VEXAG goals I.A, I.B, and I.C. 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. Science payload accommodation, constraints, and opportunities 2. Characteristics of flight operations and performance in the Venus atmosphere: altitude range, latitude and longitude access, day/night performance, aircraft performance, performance sensitivity to payload weight 3. Feasibility of and options for the deployment of the vehicle in space 4. Entry into the Venus atmosphere, including descent profile, heat rate, total heat load, stagnation temperature, control, and entry into level flight 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

  11. Volcanic lightning on Venus and early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Airey, Martin; Aplin, Karen

    2016-04-01

    Lightning may have been crucial in the development of life, as it enables key chemical reactions to occur. We cannot directly observe early Earth's hot, CO2-rich, atmosphere; however, similar conditions exist today on Venus, where there may be volcanic and/or meteorological lightning. Recent observations made by ESA's Venus Express satellite have provided evidence for active volcanism [1-3] and lightning discharges [e.g. 4], which may be volcanic in origin. This study uses laboratory experiments to simulate ash generation and to measure its electrical charging under typical atmospheric conditions for Venus and the early Earth (specifically the Hadean eon, up to 4 billion years ago, and the Archean eon, from 4 billion to 2.5 billion years ago). Ultimately the work will address the following questions: (a) is volcanic activity a feasible mechanism for lightning generation on Venus and early Earth, (b) how would these extreme paleo-environmental conditions affect lightning, (c) can the similarities in atmospheric conditions inform us of planetary evolutionary concepts, (d) could volcanic lightning have been important in the emergence of life on Earth, and (e) what are the wider implications for the likelihood of the emergence of life on other planets? A 1-litre atmospheric simulation chamber will be used to simulate the high-pressure, high-temperature, CO2-dominated atmospheres of the surface of early Earth, and Venus at ~10 km altitude (~5 MPa, 650 K) (where ash plume-forming eruptions on Venus are more likely to occur [5]). The chamber contains temperature/pressure monitoring and logging equipment, a collision apparatus to generate the charged rock fragments, and electrodes for charge measurement with an electrometer [6]. The planned experimental programme will measure the effects of varying temperature, pressure, atmospheric, and sample composition under a range of conditions appropriate to Venus and early Earth. Comparative work with present day Earth conditions

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Hot-spot tectonics of Eistla Regio, Venus: Results from Magellan images and Pioneer Venus gravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grimm, Robert E.; Phillips, Roger J.

    1991-06-01

    Eistla Regio (ER) is a broad, low, discontinuous topographic rise striking roughly EW at low northern latitudes of Venus. Some 2000 x 7000 km in dimensions, it is the third largest rise in planform on Venus after Aphrodite Terra and Beta Phoebe Regiones. These rises are the key physiographic elements in a hot spot model of global tectonics including transient plume behavior. Since ER is the first such rise viewed by Magellan and the latitude is very favorable for Pioneer Venus gravity studies, some of the predictions of a time dependent hot spot model are tested. Western ER is defined as the rise including Gula and Sif Mons and central ER as that including Sappho Patera. Superior conjunction prevented Magellan from returning data on eastern ER (Pavlova) during the first mapping cycle. It is concluded that the western and central portions of ER, while part of the same broad topographic rise and tectonic framework, have distinctly different surface ages and gravity signatures. The western rise, including Gula and Sif Mons, is the expression of deep seated uplift with volcanism limited to the individual large shields. The eastern portion has been widely resurfaced more recently by thermal anomalies in the mantle.

  15. Hot-spot tectonics of Eistla Regio, Venus: Results from Magellan images and Pioneer Venus gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grimm, Robert E.; Phillips, Roger J.

    1991-01-01

    Eistla Regio (ER) is a broad, low, discontinuous topographic rise striking roughly EW at low northern latitudes of Venus. Some 2000 x 7000 km in dimensions, it is the third largest rise in planform on Venus after Aphrodite Terra and Beta Phoebe Regiones. These rises are the key physiographic elements in a hot spot model of global tectonics including transient plume behavior. Since ER is the first such rise viewed by Magellan and the latitude is very favorable for Pioneer Venus gravity studies, some of the predictions of a time dependent hot spot model are tested. Western ER is defined as the rise including Gula and Sif Mons and central ER as that including Sappho Patera. Superior conjunction prevented Magellan from returning data on eastern ER (Pavlova) during the first mapping cycle. It is concluded that the western and central portions of ER, while part of the same broad topographic rise and tectonic framework, have distinctly different surface ages and gravity signatures. The western rise, including Gula and Sif Mons, is the expression of deep seated uplift with volcanism limited to the individual large shields. The eastern portion has been widely resurfaced more recently by thermal anomalies in the mantle.

  16. The main layers of the ionosphere of Venus as seen by Pioneer Venus Orbiter radio occultations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hermann, Jacob; Withers, Paul; Vogt, Marissa F.

    2016-10-01

    Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) performed numerous atmospheric experiments from 1978 to 1992. Radio occultation measurements were used to create vertical ionospheric electron density profiles extending as low as 100 km altitude; yielding data coverage across the V1 and V2 layers of the Venusian ionosphere, 125 and 140 km respectively. The PVO data give us a unique look at the ionosphere during solar maximum compared to later Venus missions. However, none of these ionospheric profiles were archived at the PDS nor have been available for comparison to Venus Express observations. We have extracted 120 PVO radio occultation profiles from published papers using a program to digitally read data from graphical images. Additionally, the NSSDC had 94 profiles, 63 of which were added to our dataset. The data from both sources were used in conjunction to analyze trends between solar activity and the characteristics of the V1 and V2 layers. The V1 layer, created by soft x-rays, should react more to changes in solar activity than the EUV created V2 layer. We intend to archive this data at the PDS so that the community can easily access digital measurements of the Venusian ionosphere at solar maximum.

  17. Scientific Balloons for Venus Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cutts, James; Yavrouian, Andre; Nott, Julian; Baines, Kevin; Limaye, Sanjay; Wilson, Colin; Kerzhanovich, Viktor; Voss, Paul; Hall, Jeffery

    Almost 30 years ago, two balloons were successfully deployed into the atmosphere of Venus as an element of the VeGa - Venus Halley mission conducted by the Soviet Union. As interest in further Venus exploration grows among the established planetary exploration agencies - in Europe, Japan, Russia and the United States, use of balloons is emerging as an essential part of that investigative program. Venus balloons have been proposed in NASA’s Discovery program and ESA’s cosmic vision program and are a key element in NASA’s strategic plan for Venus exploration. At JPL, the focus for the last decade has been on the development of a 7m diameter superpressure pressure(twice that of VeGa) capable of carrying a 100 kg payload (14 times that of VeGA balloons), operating for more than 30 days (15 times the 2 day flight duration of the VeGa balloons) and transmitting up to 20 Mbit of data (300 times that of VeGa balloons). This new generation of balloons must tolerate day night transitions on Venus as well as extended exposure to the sulfuric acid environment. These constant altitude balloons operating at an altitude of about 55 km on Venus where temperatures are benign can also deploy sondes to sound the atmosphere beneath the probe and deliver deep sondes equipped to survive and operate down to the surface. The technology for these balloons is now maturing rapidly and we are now looking forward to the prospects for altitude control balloons that can cycle repeatedly through the Venus cloud region. One concept, which has been used for tropospheric profiling in Antarctica, is the pumped-helium balloon, with heritage to the anchor balloon, and would be best adapted for flight above the 55 km level. Phase change balloons, which use the atmosphere as a heat engine, can be used to investigate the lower cloud region down to 30 km. Progress in components for high temperature operation may also enable investigation of the deep atmosphere of Venus with metal-based balloons.

  18. Electrical memory in Venus flytrap.

    PubMed

    Volkov, Alexander G; Carrell, Holly; Baldwin, Andrew; Markin, Vladislav S

    2009-06-01

    Electrical signaling, memory and rapid closure of the carnivorous plant Dionaea muscipula Ellis (Venus flytrap) have been attracting the attention of researchers since the XIX century. The electrical stimulus between a midrib and a lobe closes the Venus flytrap upper leaf in 0.3 s without mechanical stimulation of trigger hairs. Here we developed a new method for direct measurements of the exact electrical charge utilized by the D. muscipula Ellis to facilitate the trap closing and investigated electrical short memory in the Venus flytrap. As soon as the 8 microC charge for a small trap or a 9 microC charge for a large trap is transmitted between a lobe and midrib from the external capacitor, the trap starts to close at room temperature. At temperatures 28-36 degrees C a smaller electrical charge of 4.1 microC is required to close the trap of the D. muscipula. The cumulative character of electrical stimuli points to the existence of short-term electrical memory in the Venus flytrap. We also found sensory memory in the Venus flytrap. When one sustained mechanical stimulus was applied to only one trigger hair, the trap closed in a few seconds.

  19. The Soviet maps of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, D. F.

    1990-02-01

    The USSR began mapping parts of Venus almost six years ago and have published a series of scientific results, reaching a few limited conclusions about Venus. While based on the traditional second generation Venera orbiter design, Veneras 15 and 16 carried Polyus-V sidelooking synthetic-aperture radars which used the orbiter's motion over Venus to 'synthesize' an antenna of far larger size than could practically be carried to the planet. The resolution and coverage achieved is better than one kilometer over most of the surface compared with one tenth of a kilometer partial cover expected from the Venus Radar Mapper. The radar data will take years to analyze completely, but initial results have been released and the Soviet Union has compiled an atlas of radar images. Cartographers named two craters after American astronauts Judith Resnik and Sharon Christa McAuliffe. One of the conclusions is that Venus is not a 'single plate' planet, like the earth's moon or Mercury; its crust is distinctly broken into individual blocks with independent movements. It appears that extensive volcanism is a universal factor in the evolution of planets in the inner solar system.

  20. Particulate gravity currents on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waltham, Dave; Pickering, Kevin T.; Bray, Veronica J.

    2008-02-01

    Canali are moderately sinuous channels, typically a few kilometers wide and hundreds of kilometers long, that occur principally on the plains of Venus. Plausible hypotheses for their formation include the following: open channels cut by exotic, low-viscosity lavas; roofed-over basaltic lava channels; or water on a cooler, wetter ancient Venus. Although it is accepted that a fluid cut these channels, none of these hypotheses are entirely satisfactory. It is therefore prudent to investigate other explanations. A particulate gravity current is a rapidly moving, sediment-laden flow that moves downslope as a result of its high density compared to the ambient fluid. This high density is produced by suspension of dense particles in a lower-density fluid. As these flows are largely driven by slope, rather than by momentum, they are potentially capable of traveling great distances, producing extensive channel systems. We apply this process to Venus, exploring its channel-forming potential via mathematical modeling and morphological comparison of submarine channels on Earth to canali on Venus. Results of our modeling show that atmospheric particulate gravity currents are physically and geologically plausible on Venus. The potential of this process to form channels of great length is such that particulate gravity currents can be considered as an alternate explanation for canali genesis.

  1. 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.

  2. Venus - Alpha Regio

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    The eastern edge of Alpha Regio is shown in this image centered at 30 degrees south latitude and 11.8 degrees east longitude (longitude on Venus is measured from 0 degrees to 360 degrees east). Seven circular, dome-like hills, averaging 25 kilometers (15 miles) in diameter with maximum heights of 750 meters (2,475 feet) dominate the scene. These features are interpreted as very thick lava flows that came from an opening on the relatively level ground, which allowed the lava to flow in an even pattern outward from the opening. The complex fractures on top of the domes suggest that if the domes were created by lava flows, a cooled outer layer formed and then further lava flowing in the interior stretched the surface. The domes may be similar to volcanic domes on Earth. Another interpretation is that the domes are the result of molten rock or magma in the interior that pushed the surface layer upward. The near-surface magma then withdrew to deeper levels, causing the collapse and fracturing of the dome surface. The bright margins possibly indicate the presence of rock debris on the slopes of the domes. Some of the fractures on the plains cut through the domes, while others appear to be covered by the domes. This indicates that active processes pre date and post date the dome-like hills. The prominent black area in the northeast corner of the image is a data gap. North is at the top of the image.

  3. Structure of the middle atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zasova, Ludmila

    Middle atmosphere of Venus (55-100 km), its mesosphere, is the important layer of atmosphere, where 70 % of the solar energy is absorbed. Most of this absorption takes place in the upper clouds in the altitude range 58-68 km in the spectral range 0.32-0.5 µm. It leads to generation of the thermal tides, playing important role in support of the superrotation. In the frame of COSPAR model VIRA (ASR, 11,1985) the model of the thermal structure of the middle atmosphere was constructed for 5 latitude ranges, based mainly on the Pioneer Venus ORO and OIR data. Using Venera-15 Fourier Spectrometry data, which allow to retrieve the temperature and aerosol profiles in a self consistent way from each spectrum, we enable to update the model of the middle atmosphere, including the local time variation of the temperature for VIRA latitude ranges (Cosmic Research, 44, 4, 2006). From Venera-15 data it was shown that variation of temperature in the middle atmosphere is well described by thermal tides with harmonics 1, 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 Venusian day, the amplitudes and phases of which depend on latitude and altitude. The model of the upper clouds (VIRA) may also be updated using Venera-15 data. It was shown that the main latitude trend is the decreasing of the upper cloud boundary from 68 km at low latitudes to 60-62 km at high latitudes. Local time variation has a solar related dependence: 1 and 1/2 day components were revealed. Venus Express continues to obtain a lot of data, which may be used for the improvement of the model of the middle atmosphere and the clouds.

  4. Wave granulation in the Venus' atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochemasov, G.

    2007-08-01

    corresponding them wave granule sizes. (1/338 : 1/6)πR = πR/56.3 = 342 km. (1/338 x 1/6)πR = πR/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 πR/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

  5. Wave granulation in the Venus' atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochemasov, G.

    2007-08-01

    corresponding them wave granule sizes. (1/338 : 1/6)πR = πR/56.3 = 342 km. (1/338 x 1/6)πR = πR/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 πR/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

  6. Venus volcanism and El Chichon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, Peter M.

    Reinterpretations of telemetry data returned to earth from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter suggest that the surface of Venus may be characterized by violent immense volcanic activity. L.W. Esposito has made an interactive analysis of Pioneer ultraviolet spectral data and similar data from the earth's atmosphere [Science, 223, 1072-1074, 1984]. Spacecraft analysis of sulfur dioxide in the earth's upper atmosphere, apparently released by El Chich[acu]on, Mexico, in March 1982 (EOS, June 14, 1983, p. 411, and August 16, 1983, p. 506) prompted reanalysis of accumulated Pioneer ultraviolet data. Massive injections of sulfur dioxide into the Venus atmosphere could be the result of volcanic eruptions about the size of the Krakatoa explosive eruption that took place between Java and Summatra in 1883.

  7. 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

  8. Biologically closed electrical circuits in venus flytrap.

    PubMed

    Volkov, Alexander G; Carrell, Holly; Markin, Vladislav S

    2009-04-01

    The Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula Ellis) is a marvel of plant electrical, mechanical, and biochemical engineering. The rapid closure of the Venus flytrap upper leaf in about 0.1 s is one of the fastest movements in the plant kingdom. We found earlier that the electrical stimulus between a midrib and a lobe closes the Venus flytrap upper leaf without mechanical stimulation of trigger hairs. The Venus flytrap can accumulate small subthreshold charges and, when the threshold value is reached, the trap closes. Here, we investigated the electrical properties of the upper leaf of the Venus flytrap and proposed the equivalent electrical circuit in agreement with the experimental data.

  9. Mesospheric optical signatures of possible lightning on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pérez-Invernón, F. J.; Luque, A.; Gordillo-Vázquez, F. J.

    2016-07-01

    A self-consistent two-dimensional model is proposed to account for the transient mesospheric nighttime optical emissions associated to possible intracloud (IC) lightning occurring in the Venusian troposphere. The model calculates the mesospheric (between 75 km and 120 km in altitude) quasi-elestrostatic electric field and electron density produced in response to IC lightning activity located between 40 km and 65 km in the Venusian cloud layer. The optical signatures and the densities of perturbed excited atomic and molecular neutral and ionic species in the mesosphere of Venus are also calculated using a basic kinetic scheme. The calculations were performed for different IC lightning discharge properties. We found that the calculated electric fields in the mesosphere of Venus are above breakdown values and that, consequently, visible transient glows (similar to terrestrial Halos produced by lightning) right above the parent IC lightning are predicted. The transient optical emissions result from radiative deexcitation of excited electronic states of N2 (in the ultraviolet, visible and near-infrared ranges) and of O(1S) and of O(1D) in, respectively, the green (557 nm) and red (630 nm) wavelengths. The predicted transient lightning-induced glows from O(1S) can reach an intensity higher than 167 R and, consequently, be above the detection threshold of the Lightning and Airglow Camera instrument aboard the Japanese Akatsuki probe orbiting Venus since December 2015. However, according to our model, successful observations of transient lightning-induced optical glows could only be possible for sufficiently close (300 km or maximum 1000 km) distances.

  10. Largest impact craters on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ivanov, B. A.; Weitz, C. M.; Basilevsky, A. T.

    1992-01-01

    High-resolution radar images from the Magellan spacecraft have allowed us to perform a detailed study on 25 large impact craters on Venus with diameters from 70 to 280 km. The dimension of these large craters is comparable with the characteristic thickness of the venusian lithosphere and the atmospheric scale height. Some physical parameters for the largest impact craters on Venus (LICV), such as depth, ring/diameter ratio, and range of ballistic ejecta deposits, have been obtained from the SAR images and the altimetry dataset produced by MIT. Data related to each of these parameters is discussed.

  11. Aboard the Space Shuttle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Steinberg, F. S.

    1980-01-01

    Livability aboard the space shuttle orbiter makes it possible for men and women scientists and technicians in reasonably good health to join superbly healthy astronauts as space travelers and workers. Features of the flight deck, the mid-deck living quarters, and the subfloor life support and house-keeping equipment are illustrated as well as the provisions for food preparation, eating, sleeping, exercising, and medical care. Operation of the personal hygiene equipment and of the air revitalization system for maintaining sea level atmosphere in space is described. Capabilities of Spacelab, the purpose and use of the remote manipulator arm, and the design of a permanent space operations center assembled on-orbit by shuttle personnel are also depicted.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Limb Altitude and the Southern Hemispheric Vortex Observed by Venus Monitoring Camera on VEX Orbiter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay; Krauss, Robert; Markiewicz, Wojciech

    2013-04-01

    The Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) on European Space Agency's Venus Express orbiter has been collecting almost daily images at four wavelengths (365, 550, 980 and 1050 nm) since June 2006 with a few gaps during solar conjunctions. These data provide a nearly continuous record of the southern vortex (Limaye at al. 2009) that spans the entire hemisphere and reveal a dynamic, constantly evolving structure and showing a range of dynamical instability features in the central region. These instability features are also seen in the near infrared observations from the VIRTIS instrument on Venus Express (Luz et al. 2011). Some similarities between the Venus hemispheric vortex and a tropical cyclone have been previously noted (Suomi and Limaye, 1981; Limaye et al., 2009; 2011) and more have been discovered from the VMC observations. While the details of the spatial structure of the vortex is easily observed from the imaging observations at ultraviolet (VMC) and near infrared wavelengths (VIRTIS), the vertical structure is more difficult to determine from Venus Express. Here we present inferences about the vertical level obtained from the visible limb of the planet in VMC images. The altitude of the limb has been measured using full or near full disk images and depicts the altitude of the Venus cloud cover which comprises the vortex circulation. By precisely locating the limb location by fitting each limb profile in the VMC images, the average latitudinal profile of the limb altitude has been estimated. Although the pixel size of the images used is ~ 30-45 km, the large number of images (> 25,000) provides a very large sample of limb altitude determinations at each latitude between the equator and about 60° S latitude enabling sub-pixel variations of the limb altitude. The latitudinal profile of the limb altitude is similar to that inferred from the near infrared observations from VIRTIS (Ignatiev et al., 2009; Cottini et al., 2012) - high in low latitudes and low in polar

  15. 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.

  16. Venus - Ovda Regio

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    This image covers much of Ovda Regio, which forms the western part of Aphrodite Terra. It covers an area about 2,250 kilometers (1,386 miles) wide by 1,300 kilometers (800 miles) north to south, and ranges in latitude from 8 degrees north to 12 degrees south and in longitude from 62 degrees east to 90 degrees east. Ovda Regio is a highland region that rises over 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) above the surrounding plain. Magellan images show a complex surface, with several generations of structures. A pervasive fabric of irregular broad domes and ridges and associated curvilinear valleys was flooded by lava, then fractured. The circular feature surrounded by dark lava flows in the western part of the image is a caldera, or large volcanic collapse pit. Late-stage extension created long graben, or fault-bounded valleys, is best seen near the center of the image. The northern boundary of Ovda Regio is a steep, curvilinear mountain belt made up of long, narrow, rounded ridges. These ridges are similar in appearance to folded mountain belts on Earth. Several impact craters, such as the circular features on the western margin of the image, are scattered across the area. The bright area in the southeast part of the image indicates the presence of a radar-reflective mineral such as pyrite. Most of the highland areas on Venus display a similar bright signal. Each pixel of this image covers an area on the surface 675 meters (2,215 feet) across, representing a 9- times reduction in resolution compared to full-scale resolution data.

  17. Venus Phoebe Regio

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This Magellan radar image is of part of the Phoebe region of Venus. It is a mosaic of parts of revolutions 146 and 147 acquired in the first radar test on Aug. 16, 1990. The area in the image is located at 291 degrees east longitude, 20 degrees south latitude. The image shows an area 30 kilometers (19.6 miles) wide and 76 km (47 miles) long. The image shows a broad, up to 17 km (11 miles) wide, radar bright, lobate lava flow that extends 25 km (15.5 miles) northwest across the image strip. The volcanic flow appears bright in this image because it is rough on a scale of a few centimeters to a few meters (a few inches to a few yards), much like lava flows on Earth that are called by geologists 'aa' (ah-ah), a Hawaiian word that probably mimics the sound the ancients uttered while running barefoot over the rough, jagged surface. It is located near the southeast flank of Phoebe Regio and has flowed into local topographic lows. This lava flow has flooded the darker plains and appears to have buried north-south trending lineaments that cut the darker material. No obvious volcanic sources area visible in this image. The flow has a markedly uniform surface texture in contrast to the more mottled texture of adjacent deposits; this suggests it may represent the most recent in a series of eruptions that subsequently have been obscured. To the north and south are northwest trending graben crustal depression, or fault, areas that may belong to the system of fractures associated with Phoebe Regio.

  18. Ion energetics in the Venus nightside ionosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knudsen, W. C.; Miller, K. L.; Spenner, K.; Whitten, R. C.

    1980-01-01

    Consideration is given to the energetics of the ion gas flowing across the terminator into the Venus nightside ionosphere. Expressions are derived for the transport time of the ion gas (through 1 radian in solar zenith angle), the heat transfer time from the hot electron gas to the ions of an amount equal to the ion thermal energy), and the time required for vertical heat conduction to remove the internal energy of the ion column above a reference altitude, and it is shown that the time constant for transport is an order of magnitude smaller than the electron heat transfer time and comparable to the conduction time, and thus the ion gas is not a vertical conductive steady state. The conversion of bulk flow ion kinetic energy into heat is suggested as the mechanism responsible for the maintenance of the nightside ion temperatures at their observed values. It is thus concluded that the flow of the ion gas is quasi-adiabatic, and that steady-state, vertical, one dimensional energy balance models must be used with caution in the Venus ionosphere.

  19. Robots Aboard International Space Station

    NASA Video Gallery

    Ames Research Center, MIT and Johnson Space Center have two new robotics projects aboard the International Space Station (ISS). Robonaut 2, a two-armed humanoid robot with astronaut-like dexterity,...

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Study and Implementation of the End-to-End Data Pipeline for the Virtis Imaging Spectrometer Onbaord Venus Express: "From Science Operations Planning to Data Archiving and Higher Lever Processing"

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardesín Moinelo, Alejandro

    2010-04-01

    This PhD Thesis describes the activities performed during the Research Program undertaken for two years at the Istituto Nazionale di AstroFisica in Rome, Italy, as active member of the VIRTIS Technical and Scientific Team, and one additional year at the European Space Astronomy Center in Madrid, Spain, as member of the Mars Express Science Ground Segment. This document will show a study of all sections of the Science Ground Segment of the Venus Express mission, from the planning of the scientific operations, to the generation, calibration and archiving of the science data, including the production of valuable high level products. We will present and discuss here the end-to-end diagram of the ground segment from the technical and scientific point of view, in order to describe the overall flow of information: from the original scientific requests of the principal investigator and interdisciplinary teams, up to the spacecraft, and down again for the analysis of the measurements and interpretation of the scientific results. These scientific results drive to new and more elaborated scientific requests, which are used as feedback to the planning cycle, closing the circle. Special attention is given here to describe the implementation and development of the data pipeline for the VIRTIS instrument onboard Venus Express. During the research program, both the raw data generation pipeline and the data calibration pipeline were developed and automated in order to produce the final raw and calibrated data products from the input telemetry of the instrument. The final raw and calibrated products presented in this work are currently being used by the VIRTIS Science team for data analysis and are distributed to the whole scientific community via the Planetary Science Archive. More than 20,000 raw data files and 10,000 calibrated products have already been generated after almost 4 years of mission. In the final part of the Thesis, we will also present some high level data

  3. Exospheres and Energetic Neutral Atoms of Mars, Venus and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Futaana, Yoshifumi; Chaufray, Jean-Yves; Smith, H. Todd; Garnier, Philippe; Lichtenegger, Herbert; Delva, Magda; Gröller, Hannes; Mura, Alessandro

    Our understanding of the upper atmosphere of unmagnetized bodies such as Mars, Venus and Titan has improved significantly in this decade. Recent observations by in situ and remote sensing instruments on board Mars Express, Venus Express and Cassini have revealed characteristics of the neutral upper atmospheres (exospheres) and of energetic neutral atoms (ENAs). The ENA environment in the vicinity of the bodies is by itself a significant study field, but ENAs are also used as a diagnostic tool for the exosphere and the interaction with the upstream plasmas. Synergy between theoretical and modeling work has also improved considerably. In this review, we summarize the recent progress of our understanding of the neutral environment in the vicinity of unmagnetized planets.

  4. Exospheres and Energetic Neutral Atoms of Mars, Venus and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Futaana, Yoshifumi; Chaufray, Jean-Yves; Smith, H. Todd; Garnier, Philippe; Lichtenegger, Herbert; Delva, Magda; Gröller, Hannes; Mura, Alessandro

    2011-12-01

    Our understanding of the upper atmosphere of unmagnetized bodies such as Mars, Venus and Titan has improved significantly in this decade. Recent observations by in situ and remote sensing instruments on board Mars Express, Venus Express and Cassini have revealed characteristics of the neutral upper atmospheres (exospheres) and of energetic neutral atoms (ENAs). The ENA environment in the vicinity of the bodies is by itself a significant study field, but ENAs are also used as a diagnostic tool for the exosphere and the interaction with the upstream plasmas. Synergy between theoretical and modeling work has also improved considerably. In this review, we summarize the recent progress of our understanding of the neutral environment in the vicinity of unmagnetized planets.

  5. An Alternate View of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ackerman, J.

    2002-05-01

    Overwhelming physical evidence has been present since Pioneer Venus (PV), indicating that Venus is a hot new planet. I maintain that a fireball, with a mass some ten times that of Venus, rebounded from a high energy impact (1043 ergs) on Jupiter 6,000 years ago. Heating due to the gravitational contraction of the ejected material along with tidal and electromagnetic braking at subsequent perihelion passes produced temperatures >10,000 K. The rapid conversion of orbital energy to heat reduced proto-Venus' eccentricity and expelled the lighter atoms into space, resulting in a high average density terrestrial body. Differentiation of heavy elements and fractionation of naturally radioactive elements occurred quickly. Subsequent close planetary interactions resulted in its final orbit and uplifted the continents, by means of which the tidal force of the Earth induced Venus' spin orbit resonance. This process left much volatile material in interplanetary space, for later acquisition by the proto-planet as it cooled and by extant planets. I maintain that this is the genesis of all terrestrial bodies. Corroborating evidence exists in the form of upwelling radiation measurements from five independent PV probes, all indicating that Venus is radiating 20 w/m2. Due to its recent catastrophic origin, the interior is molten rock with a tenuous crust less than a kilometer thick. Venus' rapid cooling is manifested by two processes: (1) Via radiation from raw lava lying in many surface cracks, radiation which was so strong, that the PV LIR (sensitive infrared radiometer) data collected below the lower cloud layer was discarded; (2) The high velocity expulsion, from 200,000 small domes, of massive quantities of S8, which shoots to an altitude of 48 km. Evidence for (2) stems from the temperatures of three interfaces in the lower atmosphere. The surface temperature is maintained just above 444.5 C, the boiling point of S8, by the evaporation of raining sulfur. The altitude of the

  6. Transits of Venus in Public Education and Contemporary Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasachoff, J. M.

    2011-10-01

    Transits of Venus are among the rarest predictable astronomical event that humans can enjoy, and the 2012 transit will be visible by almost all the people on Earth. It is our job as educators to bring out the thrill of being able to see the tiny dot of Venus silhouetted against the solar disk even with just a simple eye-protection filter. My Website at http://www.transitofvenus.info brings together not only historical information about the five previous transits of Venus that were observed through the 20th century--1639, 1761, 1769, 1874, and 1882--but also the scientific work carried out at the 2004 transit and at recent transits of Mercury. Based on space observations of the 1999 transit of Mercury with NASA's Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE), Glenn Schneider and I provided proof of the contemporary explanation of the black-drop effect as an amalgam of instrumental point-spread and solar limb-darkening [1]. Based on observations of the changes in the total solar irradiance during the transit, we provided an analysis of this solar-system analogue to exoplanet transits [2]. High-resolution (0.5 arcsec pixels) observations of ingress and egress with TRACE during the 2004 transit provided information about the visibility of Venus's atmosphere through its refraction of sunlight, interpreted with Venus Express observations [3]. We anticipate observing the 2012 transit with groundbased facilities of the University of Hawaii at Haleakala, and of the National Solar Observatory at Sacramento Peak, and Kitt Peak, as well as with NASA and JAXA spacecraft, including Solar Dynamics Observatory, ACRIMsat, and Hinode. The Program Group on Public Education on the Occasions of Eclipses and Transits of Commission 46 on Education and Development of the International Astronomical Union, which I chair, looks forward to participating in Education and Public Outreach efforts related to the 2012 transit.

  7. Morphology and dynamics of the Venus upper cloud layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markiewicz, Wojciech; Titov, Dmitri; Limaye, Sanjay; Moissl, Richard; Ignatiev, Nikolay; Basilevsky, A. T.; Shalygin, E. V.; Kreslavsky, M. A.; Khatuntsev, Igor; Keller, Horst Uwe; Jaumann, Ralf; Thomas, Nicolas; Michalik, Harald

    Venus is completely covered by a thick cloud layer whose upper part is composed of sulfuric acid and some unknown aerosols1. The cloud tops are in fast retrograde rotation (super-rotation), but what is driving this super-rotation is unknown2. Here we report observations of Venus with the Venus Monitoring Camera3 (VMC) on board the Venus Express spacecraft. Taking advantage of the VMC high resolution imaging and the polar orbit we investigate both global and small scale properties of these clouds, their temporal and latitudinal variations, and derive wind velocities. The Southern polar region is highly variable and can change dramatically on time scales as short as one day, perhaps arising from the injection of SO2 into the mesosphere. The convective cells in the vicinity of the sub-solar point are much smaller than previously inferred4,5,6, which we interpret as indicating that they are confined to the upper cloud layer, contrary to previous conclusions7,8, but consistent with more recent study9. (1) Esposito, L.W. et al., in Venus, pp. 484-564, 1983, (2) Limaye, S. S., 2007, J. Geophys. Res., 112, 2007, (3) Markiewicz, W.J. et al., Planet. Space Sci., 55, 1701-1711, 2007, (4) Murray, B.C., et al., Science 183, 1307-1315 (1974), (5) Rossow, W.B. et al., J. Geophys. Res. 85, 8107-8128, 1980, (6) Covey, C.C. and G. Schubert, Nature, 290, 17-20, 1981, (7) Baker II, R.D. and G. Schubert, Nature, 355, 710-712, 1992, (8) Belton, M.J.S. et al., J. Atmos. Sci.. 33, 1394-1417, 1976, (9) Baker, R.D., G. Schubert, and P.W. Jones, J. Geophy. Res., 104, Issue E2, p. 3815-3832, 1999.

  8. Correlation studies of Pioneer Venus imagery obtained from PV experiments with near IR imagery obtained from ground-based observations during Venus inferior conjunction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ragent, Boris

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to attempt to find correlations between data taken by experiments aboard the Pioneer-Venus Orbiter (PVO) and those obtained from Earth-based near-infrared (NIR) measurements of Venus during periods near inferior conjunction. Since the NIR measurements have been found to provide data on the middle atmosphere cloud morphology and motion, it is assumed that any correlations will also indicate that the PVO experiments are also documenting cloud behavior. If such correlations are found, then a further task is to attempt to study the long term behavior of the cloud features implied by the correlations. Many PVO data have been obtained over an extended period extending from 1978 until the PV demise in 1992. There exists a long, somewhat ill-conditioned time series of data that may contain valuable information on the long time, as well as short term behavior of the clouds, and, derivatively from cloud motion, atmospheric dynamics and wave activity in the Venus atmosphere. For example, determination of the zonal velocities of any OCPP (Cloud Photopolarimeter) 0.935 micron features could then be used for comparisons with data from other sources to attempt to fix the altitude region in which such features existed. A further task of this study is to attempt to correlate any features found in simultaneously obtained data, for example, the OCPP 0.365 and 0.935 micron data. The existence of such correlations may imply that data was obtained in overlapping altitude regions of the atmosphere.

  9. Obliquity Evolution of an Early Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quarles, Billy L.; Barnes, Jason; Lissauer, Jack J.; Chambers, John

    2014-11-01

    Stark differences in both atmospheric mass and rotation are apparent between the present-day Earth and neighboring Venus. These planets may have been more similar 4 Gyr ago when most of the carbon within Venus may have been in solid form, implying a low-mass atmosphere. As a result, Venus's rotation rate could have been much faster than at present due to the smaller cumulative effects of solid-body and atmospheric tides. We investigate how the obliquity of a hypothetical rapidly-rotating Early Venus would have evolved as compared to a Moonless Earth. As with our previous investigation [Lissauer, Barnes, & Chambers 2012], slow prograde rotation of our hypothesized Early Venus generally leads to larger variations in obliquity than does retrograde rotation. However, the variability of obliquity for retrograde rotations differs from the Moonless Earth and can change with the initial spin period. The implications for early habitability of extrasolar Venus analogs will also be discussed.

  10. The dynamics of the Venus ionosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, K. L.

    1988-01-01

    Data from the Pioneer-Venus orbiter has demonstrated the importance of understanding ion dynamics in the Venus ionosphere. The analysis of the data has shown that during solar maximum the topside Venus ionosphere in the dark hemisphere is generated almost entirely on the dayside of the planet during solar maximum, and flows with supersonic velocities across the terminator into the nightside. The flow field in the ionosphere is mainly axially-symmetric about the sun-Venus axis, as are most measured ionospheric quantities. The primary data base used consisted of the ion velocity measurements made by the RPA during three years that periapsis of the orbiter was maintained in the Venus ionosphere. Examples of ion velocities were published and modeled. This research examined the planetary flow patterns measured in the Venus ionosphere, and the physical implications of departures from the mean flow.

  11. Future exploration of Venus (post-Pioneer Venus 1978)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colin, L.; Evans, L. C.; Greeley, R.; Quaide, W. L.; Schaupp, R. W.; Seiff, A.; Young, R. E.

    1976-01-01

    A comprehensive study was performed to determine the major scientific unknowns about the planet Venus to be expected in the post-Pioneer Venus 1978 time frame. Based on those results the desirability of future orbiters, atmospheric entry probes, balloons, and landers as vehicles to address the remaining scientific questions were studied. The recommended mission scenario includes a high resolution surface mapping radar orbiter mission for the 1981 launch opportunity, a multiple-lander mission for 1985 and either an atmospheric entry probe or balloon mission in 1988. All the proposed missions can be performed using proposed space shuttle upper stage boosters. Significant amounts of long-lead time supporting research and technology developments are required to be initiated in the near future to permit the recommended launch dates.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Abstracts for the Venus Geoscience Tutorial and Venus Geologic Mapping Workshop

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  15. Pioneer Venus encounter will occur in December

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    The encounter time line and mission profile are presented for the Pioneer Venus 1 Spacecraft and for the four probes and transponder bus that comprise Pioneer Venus 2. Known facts about Venus are reviewed and the history of discoveries about the planet is related. Operations of the orbiter and multiprobe are described as well as the 30 instruments being carried and provisions for data transmission.

  16. 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

  17. Venus Chasmata: A Lithospheric Stretching Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solomon, S. C.; Head, J. W.

    1985-01-01

    An outstanding problem for Venus is the characterization of its style of global tectonics, an issue intimately related to the dominant mechanism of lithospheric heat loss. Among the most spectacular and extensive of the major tectonic features on Venus are the chasmata, deep linear valleys generally interpreted to be the products of lithospheric extension and rifting. Systems of chasmata and related features can be traced along several tectonic zones up to 20,000 km in linear extent. A lithospheric stretching model was developed to explain the topographic characteristics of Venus chasmata and to constrain the physical properties of the Venus crust and lithosphere.

  18. How the Venus flytrap snaps.

    PubMed

    Forterre, Yoël; Skotheim, Jan M; Dumais, Jacques; Mahadevan, L

    2005-01-27

    The rapid closure of the Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula) leaf in about 100 ms is one of the fastest movements in the plant kingdom. This led Darwin to describe the plant as "one of the most wonderful in the world". The trap closure is initiated by the mechanical stimulation of trigger hairs. Previous studies have focused on the biochemical response of the trigger hairs to stimuli and quantified the propagation of action potentials in the leaves. Here we complement these studies by considering the post-stimulation mechanical aspects of Venus flytrap closure. Using high-speed video imaging, non-invasive microscopy techniques and a simple theoretical model, we show that the fast closure of the trap results from a snap-buckling instability, the onset of which is controlled actively by the plant. Our study identifies an ingenious solution to scaling up movements in non-muscular engines and provides a general framework for understanding nastic motion in plants.

  19. How the Venus flytrap snaps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forterre, Yoël; Skotheim, Jan M.; Dumais, Jacques; Mahadevan, L.

    2005-01-01

    The rapid closure of the Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula) leaf in about 100ms is one of the fastest movements in the plant kingdom. This led Darwin to describe the plant as ``one of the most wonderful in the world''. The trap closure is initiated by the mechanical stimulation of trigger hairs. Previous studies have focused on the biochemical response of the trigger hairs to stimuli and quantified the propagation of action potentials in the leaves. Here we complement these studies by considering the post-stimulation mechanical aspects of Venus flytrap closure. Using high-speed video imaging, non-invasive microscopy techniques and a simple theoretical model, we show that the fast closure of the trap results from a snap-buckling instability, the onset of which is controlled actively by the plant. Our study identifies an ingenious solution to scaling up movements in non-muscular engines and provides a general framework for understanding nastic motion in plants.

  20. 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.

  1. Memristors in the Venus flytrap.

    PubMed

    Volkov, Alexander G; Forde-Tuckett, Victoria; Reedus, Jada; Mitchell, Colee M; Volkova, Maya I; Markin, Vladislav S; Chua, Leon

    2014-01-01

    A memristor is a nonlinear element because its current-voltage characteristic is similar to that of a Lissajous pattern for nonlinear systems. We investigated the possible presence of memristors in the electrical circuitry of the Venus flytrap's upper and lower leaves. The electrostimulation of this plant by bipolar sinusoidal or triangle periodic waves induces electrical responses in the upper and lower leaves of the Venus flytrap with fingerprints of memristors. The analysis was based on cyclic voltammetric characteristics where the memristor, a resistor with memory, should manifest itself. Tetraethylammonium chloride, an inhibitor of voltage gated K(+) channels, or NPPB, a blocker of voltage gated Cl(-) and K(+) channels, transform a memristor to a resistor in plant tissue. Uncouplers carbonylcyanide-3-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP) and carbonylcyanide-4-trifluoromethoxy-phenyl hydrazone (FCCP) decrease the amplitude of electrical responses at low and high frequencies of bipolar periodic electrostimulating waves. Our results demonstrate that voltage gated K(+) channels in the Venus flytrap have properties of memristors of type 1 and type 2. The discovery of memristors in plants creates a new direction in the modeling and understanding of electrical phenomena in plants.

  2. Memristors in the Venus flytrap.

    PubMed

    Volkov, Alexander G; Forde-Tuckett, Victoria; Reedus, Jada; Mitchell, Colee M; Volkova, Maya I; Markin, Vladislav S; Chua, Leon

    2014-05-16

    A memristor is a nonlinear element because its current-voltage characteristic is similar to that of a Lissajous pattern for nonlinear systems. We investigated the possible presence of memristors in the electrical circuitry of the Venus flytrap's upper and lower leaves. The electrostimulation of this plant by bipolar sinusoidal or triangle periodic waves induces electrical responses in the upper and lower leaves of the Venus flytrap with fingerprints of memristors. The analysis was based on cyclic voltammetric characteristics where the memristor, a resistor with memory, should manifest itself. Tetraethylammonium chloride, an inhibitor of voltage gated K(+) channels, or NPPB, a blocker of voltage gated Cl(-) and K(+) channels, transform a memristor to a resistor in plant tissue. Uncouplers carbonylcyanide-3-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP) and carbonylcyanide-4-trifluoromethoxy-phenyl hydrazone (FCCP) decrease the amplitude of electrical responses at low and high frequencies of bipolar periodic electrostimulating waves. Our results demonstrate that voltage gated K(+) channels in the Venus flytrap have properties of memristors of type 1 and type 2. The discovery of memristors in plants creates a new direction in the modeling and understanding of electrical phenomena in plants.

  3. Memristors in the Venus flytrap

    PubMed Central

    Volkov, Alexander G; Forde-Tuckett, Victoria; Reedus, Jada; Mitchell, Colee M; Volkova, Maya I; Markin, Vladislav S.; Chua, Leon

    2014-01-01

    A memristor is a nonlinear element because its current-voltage characteristic is similar to that of a Lissajous pattern for nonlinear systems. We investigated the possible presence of memristors in the electrical circuitry of the Venus flytrap’s upper and lower leaves. The electrostimulation of this plant by bipolar sinusoidal or triangle periodic waves induces electrical responses in the upper and lower leaves of the Venus flytrap with fingerprints of memristors. The analysis was based on cyclic voltammetric characteristics where the memristor, a resistor with memory, should manifest itself. Tetraethylammonium chloride, an inhibitor of voltage gated K+ channels, or NPPB, a blocker of voltage gated Cl- and K+ channels, transform a memristor to a resistor in plant tissue. Uncouplers carbonylcyanide-3-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP) and carbonylcyanide-4-trifluoromethoxy-phenyl hydrazone (FCCP) decrease the amplitude of electrical responses at low and high frequencies of bipolar periodic electrostimulating waves. Our results demonstrate that voltage gated K+ channels in the Venus flytrap have properties of memristors of type 1 and type 2. The discovery of memristors in plants creates a new direction in the modeling and understanding of electrical phenomena in plants. PMID:25763613

  4. Solar Powered Flight on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colozza, Anthony; Landis, Geoff (Technical Monitor)

    2004-01-01

    Solar powered flight within the Venus environment from the surface to the upper atmosphere was evaluated. The objective was to see if a station-keeping mission was possible within this environment based on a solar power generating system. Due to the slow rotation rate of Venus it would be possible to remain within the day light side of the planet for extended periods of time. However the high wind speeds and thick cloud cover make a station-keeping solar powered mission challenging. The environment of Venus was modeled as a function of altitude from the surface. This modeling included density, temperature, solar attenuation and wind speed. Using this environmental model flight with both airships and aircraft was considered to evaluate whether a station-keeping mission is feasible. The solar power system and flight characteristics of both types of vehicles was modeled and power balance was set up to determine if the power available from the solar array was sufficient to provide enough thrust to maintain station over a fixed ground location.

  5. The Magellan Venus explorer's guide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Young, Carolynn (Editor)

    1990-01-01

    The Magellan radar-mapping mission to the planet Venus is described. Scientific highlights include the history of U.S. and Soviet missions, as well as ground-based radar observations, that have provided the current knowledge about the surface of Venus. Descriptions of the major Venusian surface features include controversial theories about the origin of some of the features. The organization of the Magellan science investigators into discipline-related task groups for data-analysis purposes is presented. The design of the Magellan spacecraft and the ability of its radar sensor to conduct radar imaging, altimetry, and radiometry measurements are discussed. Other topics report on the May 1989 launch, the interplanetary cruise, the Venus orbit-insertion maneuver, and the in-orbit mapping strategy. The objectives of a possible extended mission emphasize the gravity experiment and explain why high-resolution gravity data cannot be acquired during the primary mission. A focus on the people of Magellan reveals how they fly the spacecraft and prepare for major mission events. Special items of interest associated with the Magellan mission are contained in windows interspersed throughout the text. Finally, short summaries describe the major objectives and schedules for several exciting space missions planned to take us into the 21st century.

  6. Towards a Self Consistent Model of the Thermal Structure of the Venus Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay; Vandaele, Ann C.; Wilson, Colin

    Nearly three decades ago, an international effort led to the adoption of the Venus International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA) was published in 1985 after the significant data returned by the Pioneer Venus Orbiter and Probes and the earlier Venera missions (Kliore et al., 1985). The vertical thermal structure is one component of the reference model which relied primarily on the three Pioneer Venus Small Probes, the Large Probe profiles as well as several hundred retrieved temperature profiles from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter radio occultation data collected during 1978 - 1982. Since then a huge amount of thermal structure data has been obtained from multiple instruments on ESA’s Venus Express (VEX) orbiter mission. The VEX data come from retrieval of temperature profiles from SPICAV/SOIR stellar/solar occultations, VeRa radio occultations and from the passive remote sensing by the VIRTIS instrument. The results of these three experiments vary in their intrinsic properties - altitude coverage, spatial and temporal sampling and resolution and accuracy An international team has been formed with support from the International Space Studies Institute (Bern, Switzerland) to consider the observations of the Venus atmospheric structure obtained since the data used for the COSPAR Venus International Reference Atmosphere (Kliore et al., 1985). We report on the progress made by the comparison of the newer data with VIRA model and also between different experiments where there is overlap. Kliore, A.J., V.I. Moroz, and G.M. Keating, Eds. 1985, VIRA: Venus International Reference Atmosphere, Advances in Space Research, Volume 5, Number 11, 307 pages.

  7. The SPICAV-SOIR instrument probing the atmosphere of Venus: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trompet, Loïc; Mahieux, Arnaud; Wilquet, Valérie; Robert, Séverine; Chamberlain, Sarah; Thomas, Ian; Carine Vandaele, Ann; Bertaux, Jean-Loup

    2016-04-01

    The Solar Occultation in the Infrared (SOIR) channel mounted on top of the SPICAV instrument of the ESA's Venus Express mission has observed the atmosphere of Venus during more than eight years. This IR spectrometer (2.2-4.3 μm) with a high spectral resolution (0.12 cm-1) combined an echelle grating with an acousto-optic tunable filter for order selection. SOIR performed more than 1500 solar occultation measurements leading to about two millions spectra. The Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB) was in charge of SOIR's development and operations as well as its data pipeline. BIRA-IASB carried out several studies on the composition of Venus mesosphere and lower thermosphere: carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, hydrogen halide (HF, HCl, DF, DCl), sulfur dioxide, water (H2O, HDO) as well as sulphuric acid aerosols in the upper haze of Venus. Density and temperature profiles of the upper atmosphere of Venus (60 km to 170 km) at the terminator have been retrieved from SOIR's spectra using different assumptions, wherein the hydrostatic equilibrium and the local thermodynamical equilibrium in the radiative transfer calculations. These results allow us to produce an Atmospheric model of Venus called Venus Atmosphere from SOIR measurements at the Terminator (VAST). Data obtained by SOIR will also contribute to update the Venus International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA). Recently, the treatment of the raw data to transmittance has been optimized, and a new dataset of spectra has been produced. All raw spectra (PSA level 2) as well as calibrated spectra (PSA level 3) have been delivered to ESA's Planetary Science Archive (PDSPSA). Consequently the re-analysis of all spectra has been undergone. We will briefly present the improvements implemented in the data pipeline. We will also show a compilation of results obtained by the instrument considering the complete mission duration.

  8. Robotic Technology for Exploration of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2003-01-01

    Venus, the "greenhouse planet", is a scientifically fascinating place. A huge number of important scientific questions remain to be answered. Venus is sometimes called Earth's "sister planet" due to the fact that it is closest to the Earth in distance and similar to Earth in size. Despite its similarity to Earth, however, the climate of Venus is vastly different from Earth's. Understanding the atmosphere, climate, geology, and history of Venus could shed considerable light on our understanding of our own home planet. The surface of Venus is a hostile environment, with an atmosperic pressure of over 90 bar of carbon dioxide, temperature of 450 C, and shrouded in sulphuric-acid clouds. Venus has been explored by a number of missions from Earth, including the Russian Venera missions which landed probes on the surface, the American Pioneer missions which flew both orbiters and atmospheric probes to Venus, the Russian "Vega" mission, which floated balloons in the atmosphere of Venus, and most recently the American Magellan mission which mapped the surface by radar imaging. While these missions have answered basic questions about Venus, telling us the surface temperature and pressure, the elevations and topography of the continents, and the composition of the atmosphere and clouds, scientific mysteries still abound. Venus is of considerable interest to terrestrial atmospheric science, since of all the planets in the solar system, it is the closest analogue to the Earth in terms of atmosphere. Yet Venus' atmosphere is an example of "runaway greenhouse effect." Understanding the history and the dynamics of Venus' atmosphere could tell us considerable insight about the workings of the atmosphere of the Earth. It also has some interest to astrobiology-- could life have existed on Venus in an earlier, pre-greenhouse-effect phase? Could life still be possible in the temperate middle-atmosphere of Venus? The geology of Venus also has interest in the study of Earth. surface

  9. Visualization of the Epiblast and Visceral Endodermal Cells Using Fgf5-P2A-Venus BAC Transgenic Mice and Epiblast Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Khoa, Le Tran Phuc; Azami, Takuya; Tsukiyama, Tomoyuki; Matsushita, Jun; Tsukiyama-Fujii, Setsuko; Takahashi, Satoru; Ema, Masatsugu

    2016-01-01

    Fibroblast growth factor 5 (Fgf5) has been widely used as a marker for the epiblast in the postimplantation embryo and epiblast stem cells (mEpiSCs) in the mouse, making it valuable for study of differentiation of various tissues and epiblast cells in vivo and in vitro. Here, we report for the first time the generation of Fgf5-P2A-Venus BAC transgenic (Tg) mice and show that the BAC Tg can recapitulate endogenous Fgf5 expression in epiblast and visceral endodermal cells of E6.5 and 7.5 embryos. We also show that Fgf5-P2A-Venus BAC Tg mEpiSCs in the undifferentiated state expressed abundant Venus, and upon reprogramming into naïve state, Venus was suppressed. Furthermore, while most Tg mEpiSCs expressed Venus abundantly, surprisingly the Tg mEpiSCs contained a minor subpopulation of Venus-negative cells that were capable of conversion to Venus-positive cells, indicating that even Fgf5 expression shows dynamic heterogeneity in mEpiSCs. Taken together, Fgf5-P2A-Venus BAC Tg mice and mEpiSCs generated in this study will be useful for developmental biology as well as stem cell biology research.

  10. The latest views of Venus as observed by the Japanese Orbiter "Akatsuki"

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Satoh, Takehiko; Akatsuki Project Team

    2016-10-01

    Akatsuki, also known as the Venus Climate Orbiter (VCO) of Japan, was launched on 21 May 2010 from Tanegashima Space Center, Kagoshima, Japan. After 6 months of cruising to Venus, an attempt was made to insert Akatsuki in Venus orbit (VOI) on 7 December 2010. However, due to the clogged check valve in a pressurizing system of fuel line, the thrust to decelerate the spacecraft was not enough to allow it captured by the gravitational pull of Venus. After this failure, Akatsuki became an artificial planet around the sun with an orbital period of ~200 days. We waited for 5 earth years (or 9 Akatsuki years), and the second attempt (VOI-R1) was made on the same day, 7 December 2015. It was a great surprise to the world that a "once failed" spacecraft made a successful orbital insertion after many years of time. The orbital period around Venus is slightly shorter than 11 days, with the apoapsis altitude of ~0.37 million km.After Venus Express (VEX), which was in Venus orbit for 8 years, Akatsuki still keeps a unique position and is expected to make a great contribution to the Venus science due primarily to its orbit. In contrast to the polar orbits of Pioneer Venus or VEX, Akatsuki is in a near-equatorial plane and revolves westward, the same direction as the super rotating atmosphere. This orbit allows the spacecraft in a "partial" synchronization with the atmospheric motion when Akatsuki is near the planet. When at greater distances, the atmosphere moves faster than Akatsuki's orbital motion so the spacecraft maps the full longitude range of Venus in several days. This meteorological-satellite-like concept makes Akatsuki the most unique planetary orbiter in the history. To sense the various levels of the atmosphere, to draw 3-dimentional picture of dynamics, Akatsuki is equipped with 5 on-board cameras, UVI (283 and 365 nm wavelength), IR1 (0.90, 0.97, and 1.01 μm), IR2 (1.65, 1.735, 2.02, 2.26, and 2.32 μm), LIR (8-12 μm), and LAC (a special high-speed sensor at

  11. 78 FR 67309 - Earth Stations Aboard Aircraft

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-12

    ... COMMISSION 47 CFR Part 25 Earth Stations Aboard Aircraft AGENCY: Federal Communications Commission. ACTION... collection associated with the Commission's Earth Station Aboard Aircraft, Report and Order (Order), which adopted licensing and service rules for Earth Stations Aboard Aircraft (ESAA) communicating with...

  12. Weak, Quiet Magnetic Fields Seen in the Venus Atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Zhang, T L; Baumjohann, W; Russell, C T; Luhmann, J G; Xiao, S D

    2016-03-24

    The existence of a strong internal magnetic field allows probing of the interior through both long term changes of and short period fluctuations in that magnetic field. Venus, while Earth's twin in many ways, lacks such a strong intrinsic magnetic field, but perhaps short period fluctuations can still be used to probe the electrical conductivity of the interior. Toward the end of the Venus Express mission, an aerobraking campaign took the spacecraft below the ionosphere into the very weakly electrically conducting atmosphere. As the spacecraft descended from 150 to 140 km altitude, the magnetic field became weaker on average and less noisy. Below 140 km, the median field strength became steady but the short period fluctuations continued to weaken. The weakness of the fluctuations indicates they might not be useful for electromagnetic sounding of the atmosphere from a high altitude platform such as a plane or balloon, but possibly could be attempted on a lander.

  13. Characterizing atmospheric waves on Venus, Earth, and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Colin F.; Piccialli, Arianna

    2012-06-01

    Atmospheric Waves Workshop; Noordwijk, Netherlands, 9-10 November 2011 Experts in observations and modeling of atmospheric waves from the Earth and planetary atmospheric science communities came together at a November 2011 workshop held at the European Space Agency's (ESA) European Space Research and Technology Centre ( ESTEC) site in the Netherlands to discuss the nature of waves observed in Venus's atmosphere and their comparison to those on Earth and Mars. ESA's Venus Express (VEx) satellite and ground-based observers find atmospheric waves at many scales. Migrating solar tides and other planetary- scale waves are observed in cloud- tracking wind vectors and temperature fields. Mesoscale gravity waves (GWs) can also be seen at a variety of levels from the cloud base up to the thermosphere, evident in imagery and in vertical profiles of temperature, density, and aerosol abundance. This workshop focused particularly on GWs, as their role in the atmospheric circulation is still poorly understood.

  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.

  16. Model calculations of the dayside ionosphere of Venus - Energetics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cravens, T. E.; Gombosi, T. I.; Kozyra, J.; Nagy, A. F.; Brace, L. H.; Knudsen, W. C.

    1980-01-01

    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.

  17. Weak, Quiet Magnetic Fields Seen in the Venus Atmosphere

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, T. L.; Baumjohann, W.; Russell, C. T.; Luhmann, J. G.; Xiao, S. D.

    2016-01-01

    The existence of a strong internal magnetic field allows probing of the interior through both long term changes of and short period fluctuations in that magnetic field. Venus, while Earth’s twin in many ways, lacks such a strong intrinsic magnetic field, but perhaps short period fluctuations can still be used to probe the electrical conductivity of the interior. Toward the end of the Venus Express mission, an aerobraking campaign took the spacecraft below the ionosphere into the very weakly electrically conducting atmosphere. As the spacecraft descended from 150 to 140 km altitude, the magnetic field became weaker on average and less noisy. Below 140 km, the median field strength became steady but the short period fluctuations continued to weaken. The weakness of the fluctuations indicates they might not be useful for electromagnetic sounding of the atmosphere from a high altitude platform such as a plane or balloon, but possibly could be attempted on a lander. PMID:27009234

  18. Oxygen Escape from Venus During High Dynamic Pressure ICMEs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McEnulty, Tess; Luhmann, J. G.; Brain, D. A.; Fedorov, A.; Jian, L. K.; Russell, C. T.; Zhang, T.; Möstl, C.; Futaana, Y.; de Pater, I.

    2013-10-01

    Previous studies using data from Pioneer Venus suggested that oxygen ion escape flux may be enhanced by orders of magnitude during Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejections. However, this large enhancement has been ambiguous in Venus Express ion data - with some analyses showing no flux enhancement or a small enhancement (within 2 times undisturbed cases). One possible explanation is that high escape flux may be due to high dynamic pressure in the solar wind, and the dynamic pressure has been lower during the VEX time period. So, we focus on ICMEs with the largest dynamic pressure and with VEX sampling of the escaping ions during the sheath of the ICMEs (during which the highest dynamic pressures in the solar wind occur). We will show the characteristics of these large events measured by VEX, and compare them to the largest ICMEs measured by PVO. We will then discuss estimates of the oxygen ion escape flux during these events.

  19. Investigating gravity waves evidences in the Venus upper atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliorini, Alessandra; Altieri, Francesca; Shakun, Alexey; Zasova, Ludmila; Piccioni, Giuseppe; Bellucci, Giancarlo; Grassi, Davide

    2014-05-01

    We present a method to investigate gravity waves properties in the upper mesosphere of Venus, through the O2 nightglow observations acquired with the imaging spectrometer VIRTIS on board Venus Express. Gravity waves are important dynamical features that transport energy and momentum. They are related to the buoyancy force, which lifts air particles. Then, the vertical displacement of air particles produces density changes that cause gravity to act as restoring force. Gravity waves can manifest through fluctuations on temperature and density fields, and hence on airglow intensities. We use the O2 nightglow profiles showing double peaked structures to study the influence of gravity waves in shaping the O2 vertical profiles and infer the waves properties. In analogy to the Earth's and Mars cases, we use a well-known theory to model the O2 nightglow emissions affected by gravity waves propagation. Here we propose a statistical discussion of the gravity waves characteristics, namely vertical wavelength and wave amplitude, with respect to local time and latitude. The method is applied to about 30 profiles showing double peaked structures, and acquired with the VIRTIS/Venus Express spectrometer, during the mission period from 2006-07-05 to 2008-08-15.

  20. Mars is close to venus--female reproductive proteins are expressed in the fat body and reproductive tract of honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) drones.

    PubMed

    Colonello-Frattini, Nínive Aguiar; Guidugli-Lazzarini, Karina Rosa; Simões, Zilá Luz Paulino; Hartfelder, Klaus

    2010-11-01

    Vitellogenin (Vg) and lipophorin (Lp) are lipoproteins which play important roles in female reproductive physiology of insects. Both are actively taken up by growing oocytes and especially Vg and its receptor are considered as female-specifically expressed. The finding that the fat body of in honey bee (Apis mellifera) drones synthesizes Vg and is present in hemolymph has long been viewed as a curiosity. The recent paradigm change concerning the role played by Vg in honey bee life history, especially social division of labor, has now led us to investigate whether a physiological constellation similar to that seen in female reproduction may also be represented in the male sex. By means of Western blot analysis we could show that both Vg and Lp are present in the reproductive tract of adult drones, including the accessory (mucus) glands, but apparently are not secreted. Furthermore, we analyzed the transcript levels of the genes encoding these proteins (vg and lp), as well as their putative receptors (Amvgr and Amlpr) in fat body and accessory glands. Whereas lp, vg and Amlpr transcript levels decreased with age in both tissues, Amvgr mRNA levels increased with age in fat body. To our knowledge this is the first report that vitellogenin and its receptor are co-expressed in the reproductive system of a male insect. We interpret these findings as a cross-sexual transfer of a social physiological trait, associated with the rewiring of the juvenile hormone/vitellogenin circuitry that occurred in the female sex of honey bees.

  1. Magma vesiculation and pyroclastic volcanism on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garvin, J. B.; Head, J. W.; Wilson, L.

    1982-11-01

    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.

  2. The tectonics of Venus: An overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solomon, Sean C.

    1992-01-01

    While the Pioneer Venus altimeter, Earth-based radar observatories, and the Venera 15-16 orbital imaging radars provided views of large-scale tectonic features on Venus at ever-increasing resolution, the radar images from Magellan constitute an improvement in resolution of at least an order of magnitude over the best previously available. A summary of early Magellan observations of tectonic features on Venus was published, but data available at that time were restricted to the first month of mapping and represented only about 15 percent of the surface of the planet. Magellan images and altimetry are now available for more than 95 percent of the Venus surface. Thus a more global perspective may be taken on the styles and distribution of lithospheric deformation on Venus and their implications for the tectonic history of the planet.

  3. 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.

  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

  5. Outgassing history of Venus and the absence of water on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhang, Youxue; Zindler, Alan

    1992-01-01

    Similarities in the size and mean density of Earth and Venus encourage the use of Earth-analogue models for the evolution of Venus. However, the amount of water in the present Venus atmosphere is miniscule compared to Earth's oceans. The 'missing' water is thus one of the most significant problems related to the origin and evolution of Venus. Other researchers proposed that Venus accreted with less water, but this was challenged. The high D/H ratio in Venus' atmosphere is consistent with an earlier water mass more than 100 times higher than at present conditions and is often cited to support a 'wet' Venus, but this amounts to only 0.01 to 0.1 percent of the water in terrestrial oceans and the high D/H ratio on Venus could easily reflect cometary injection. Nevertheless, many authors begin with the premise that Venus once had an oceanlike water mass on its surface, and investigate the many possible mechanisms that might account for its loss. In this paper we propose that Venus degassed to lower degree than the Earth and never had an oceanlike surface water mass.

  6. Pioneer Venus Orbiter contributions to a revised Venus reference ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brace, L. H.; Grebowsky, J. M.; Kliore, A. J.

    1997-05-01

    The original Venus International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA) included an empirical model of the Venusian ionosphere (Bauer et al. 1985) which was based primarily on in situ and radio occultation measurements made by the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) in 1979 and 1980, a time of very high solar activity. The solar cycle variations of in situ parameters could not be determined because periapsis rose out of the main ionosphere toward the end of 1980 and remained there for the next 11 years. During this period, in situ measurements of the upper nightside ionosphere were made each time periapsis swept through the umbra. Radio occultation measurements continued to provide detailed information on the solar cycle variations of electron density, N_e, in the main ionosphere. In situ measurements of the main ionosphere resumed briefly in the Summer and Fall of 1992 as periapsis returned to low altitudes. At that time, the remaining fuel supply was used to delay the inevitable atmospheric entry in order to obtain extensive in situ measurements down to altitudes in the vicinity of 140 km. In this paper we present N_e models for solar maximum and solar minimum, and we call attention to what has been learned from the in situ measurements made since the time of the original VIRA model, focusing primarily on the solar cycle variations. These results are offered as a PVO contribution to a planned future revision of the VIRA ionosphere model.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Venus magmatic and tectonic evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, R. J.; Hansen, V. L.

    1993-01-01

    Two years beyond the initial mapping by the Magellan spacecraft, hypotheses for the magmatic and tectonic evolution of Venus have become refined and focused. We present our view of these processes, attempting to synthesize aspects of a model for the tectonic and magmatic behavior of the planet. The ideas presented should be taken collectively as an hypothesis subject to further testing. The quintessence of our model is that shear and buoyancy forces in the upper boundary layer of mantle convection give rise to a spatially and temporally complex pattern of strain in a one-plate Venusian lithosphere and modulate the timing and occurrence of magmatism on a global basis.

  10. Carbon monoxide observed in Venus' atmosphere with SOIR/VEx

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandaele, A. C.; Mahieux, A.; Chamberlain, S.; Ristic, B.; Robert, S.; Thomas, I. R.; Trompet, L.; Wilquet, V.; Bertaux, J. L.

    2016-07-01

    The SOIR instrument on board the ESA Venus Express mission has been operational during the complete duration of the mission, from April 2006 up to December 2014. Spectra were recorded in the IR spectral region (2.2-4.3 μm) using the solar occultation geometry, giving access to a vast number of ro-vibrational lines and bands of several key species of the atmosphere of Venus. Here we present the complete set of vertical profiles of carbon monoxide (CO) densities and volume mixing ratios (vmr) obtained during the mission. These profiles are spanning the 65-150 km altitude range. We discuss the variability which is observed on the short term, but also the long term trend as well as variation of CO with solar local time and latitude. Short term variations can reach one order of magnitude on less than one month periods. SOIR does not observe a marked long term trend, except perhaps at the beginning of the mission where an increase of CO density and vmr has been observed. Evening abundances are systematically higher than morning values at altitudes above 105 km, but the reverse is observed at lower altitudes. Higher abundances are observed at the equator than at the poles for altitude higher than 105 km, but again the reverse is seen at altitudes lower than 90 km. This illustrates the complexity of the 90-100 km region of the Venus' atmosphere where different wind regimes are at play.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. An Interaction Region Near the Top of the Ionosphere Observed at Mars and Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frahm, R. A.; Winningham, J.; Sharber, J. R.; Duru, F.; Gurnett, D. A.; Lundin, R.; Coates, A. J.; Tsang, S. M.; Delva, M.; Zhang, T.

    2009-05-01

    The European Space Agency (ESA) currently operates spacecraft at both Mars (Mars Express - MEx) and at Venus (Venus Express - VEx). On both MEx and VEx is the Analyzer of Space Plasmas and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA) experiment, which measures the electron spectrum with the Electron Spectrometer (ELS) and the ion spectrum with the Ion Mass Analyzer (IMA). The MEx spacecraft also contains the Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionospheric Sounding (MARSIS) which can derive the thermal electron density and magnetic field magnitude from its ionograms. The VEx spacecraft also contains a magnetometer (MAG) experiment. At the top of the ionosphere of Mars and Venus is a region where there is mixing between plasma from the ionosphere and plasma from the solar wind. ASPERA-3 data shows high energy strahl from the solar wind penetrating through the bow shock and magnetosheath, and into the dayside ionosphere. At the same time, plasma showing electron peaks generated by the ionization of carbon dioxide and atomic oxygen by solar He 30.4 nm penetrates into the magnetosheath. This overlap region is located where the thermal electron density at Mars derived by MARSIS decreases. This region marks the beginning of ion acceleration as ions begin to flow down the tail. This region is also observed at Venus. All three experiments show turbulence near and through the ionosphere/solar wind interaction region. In this presentation we will show examples of this transition region from both Mars and Venus.

  14. Measurements Needed to Understand Superrotation and Circulation in the Venus Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parish, H. F.; Schubert, G.; Covey, C. C.

    2013-12-01

    many satellite and ground based instruments. Recent measurements from Venus Express also indicate that the average cloud top wind speeds have steadily and significantly increased over the last six years. Variability on multi-year and shorter timescales occurs in at least one Venus general circulation model (Parish et al., 2011) for a variety of choices of input assumptions (Lebonnois et al., 2012). The same model also indicates significant hemispheric asymmetries in the zonal winds and angular momentum, related to hemispheric asymmetries in the surface topography. Accordingly, future observations must include multi-year observations and in situ measurements of the lower atmosphere that cover a full range of both latitudes and local solar times.

  15. 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

  16. Flux rope structures in the ionospheres of unmagnetized bodies: comparison study between Mars, Venus and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, H.; Russell, C. T.; Luhmann, J. G.; Dougherty, M. K.; Zhang, T.

    2011-12-01

    Magnetic flux ropes have the structure of twisted flux tubes. They are created in the ionosphere of unmagnetized bodies such as Mars, Venus and Titan, by the interaction with the solar wind for the former two, and by the interaction with the Saturnian magnetospheric plasma for Titan. They were first detected at Venus by Pioneer Venus Orbiter during solar maximum, and later by Venus Express during solar minimum. At Mars they are detected by Mars Global Surveyor, and at Titan they are detected by Cassini. Comparison study of the flux rope structures in the three ionospheres can improve our understanding of how flux ropes form and what determines their observed properties. The formation of an ionospheric flux rope is thought to first occur near the boundary between the magnetic barrier and the ionosphere and to be twisted by velocity shear across the flux tube. Later it is pulled into the lower ionosphere and gets twisted further. During this process, the curvature force must overcome the buoyancy force to pull it downward. At Venus, there is more rope occurrence during solar maximum than during solar minimum because the ionosphere is more often magnetized during solar minimum which is unfavorable for rope formation. The observations of both developing ropes and mature ropes and the analysis show that the rope axial orientations agree with the above formation mechanism. The buoyancy force near the Venus' ionopause is slightly larger than the curvature force if the flux tube contains no plasma, but photoionization of exosphere neutrals within the flux tube would reduce the buoyancy force so that the flux tube could be dragged to lower altitudes by the curvature force. At Mars, rope occurrence was observed less frequently than for Venus ropes, probably due to the fact that Mars' ionosphere is more often deeply magnetized. But in general the Mars ropes have similar global characteristics of those at Venus in terms of size and axial orientations. There is no rope observed

  17. Venus as a laboratory for studying planetary surface, interior, and atmospheric evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smrekar, S. E.; Hensley, S.; Helbert, J.

    2013-12-01

    As Earth's twin, Venus offers a laboratory for understanding what makes our home planet unique in our solar system. The Decadal Survey points to the role of Venus in answering questions such as the supply of water and its role in atmospheric evolution, its availability to support life, and the role of geology and dynamics in controlling volatiles and climate. On Earth, the mechanism of plate tectonics drives the deformation and volcanism that allows volatiles to escape from the interior to the atmosphere and be recycled into the interior. Magellan revealed that Venus lacks plate tectonics. The number and distribution of impact craters lead to the idea Venus resurfaced very rapidly, and inspired numerous models of lithospheric foundering and episodic plate tectonics. However we have no evidence that Venus ever experienced a plate tectonic regime. How is surface deformation affected if no volatiles are recycled into the interior? Although Venus is considered a ';stagnant' lid planet (lacking plate motion) today, we have evidence for recent volcanism. The VIRTIS instrument on Venus Express mapped the southern hemisphere at 1.02 microns, revealing areas likely to be unweathered, recent volcanic flows. Additionally, numerous studies have shown that the crater population is consistent with ongoing, regional resurfacing. How does deformation and volcanism occur in the absence of plates? At what rate is the planet resurfacing and thus outgassing? Does lithospheric recycling occur with plate tectonics? In the 25 years since Magellan, the design of Synthetic Aperture Radar has advanced tremendously, allowing order of magnitude improvements in altimetry and imaging. With these advanced tools, we can explore Venus' past and current tectonic states. Tesserae are highly deformed plateaus, thought to be possible remnants of Venus' earlier tectonic state. How did they form? Are they low in silica, like Earth's continents, indicating the presence of abundant water? Does the plains

  18. Plasma Waves in the Magnetosheath of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strangeway, Robert J.

    1996-01-01

    Research supported by this grant is divided into three basic topics of investigation. These are: (1) Plasma waves in the Venus magnetosheath, (2) Plasma waves in the Venus foreshock and solar wind, (3) plasma waves in the Venus nightside ionosphere and ionotail. The main issues addressed in the first area - Plasma waves in the Venus magnetosheath - dealt with the wave modes observed in the magnetosheath and upper ionosphere, and whether these waves are a significant source of heating for the topside ionosphere. The source of the waves was also investigated. In the second area - Plasma waves in the Venus foreshock and solar wind, we carried out some research on waves observed upstream of the planetary bow shock known as the foreshock. The foreshock and bow shock modify the ambient magnetic field and plasma, and need to be understood if we are to understand the magnetosheath. Although most of the research was directed to wave observations on the dayside of the planet, in the last of the three basic areas studied, we also analyzed data from the nightside. The plasma waves observed by the Pioneer Venus Orbiter on the nightside continue to be of considerable interest since they have been cited as evidence for lightning on Venus.

  19. 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.

  20. Zephyr: A Landsailing Rover for Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Oleson, Steven R.; Grantier, David

    2014-01-01

    With an average temperature of 450C and a corrosive atmosphere at a pressure of 90 bars, the surface of Venus is the most hostile environment of any planetary surface in the solar system. Exploring the surface of Venus would be an exciting goal, since Venus is a planet with significant scientific mysteries, and interesting geology and geophysics. Technology to operate at the environmental conditions of Venus is under development. A rover on the surface of Venus with capability comparable to the rovers that have been sent to Mars would push the limits of technology in high-temperature electronics, robotics, and robust systems. Such a rover would require the ability to traverse the landscape on extremely low power levels. We have analyzed an innovative concept for a planetary rover: a sail-propelled rover to explore the surface of Venus. Such a rover can be implemented with only two moving parts; the sail, and the steering. Although the surface wind speeds are low (under 1 m/s), at Venus atmospheric density even low wind speeds develop significant force. Under funding by the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts office, a conceptual design for such a rover has been done. Total landed mass of the system is 265 kg, somewhat less than that of the MER rovers, with a 12 square meter rigid sail. The rover folds into a 3.6 meter aeroshell for entry into the Venus atmosphere and subsequent parachute landing on the surface. Conceptual designs for a set of hightemperature scientific instruments and a UHF communication system were done. The mission design lifetime is 50 days, allowing operation during the sunlit portion of one Venus day. Although some technology development is needed to bring the high-temperature electronics to operational readiness, the study showed that such a mobility approach is feasible, and no major difficulties are seen.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Venus in motion. [Mariner 10 television pictures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, J. L.; Danielson, G. E.; Evans, N.; Soha, J. M.; Belton, M. J. S.

    1978-01-01

    A comprehensive set of television pictures of Venus taken by the Mariner 10 spacecraft is presented. Included is a chronological sequence of television images illustrating the development, variety, and circulation of Venus upper-atmospheric phenomena as viewed in the near-ultraviolet. The higher-resolution images have been assembled into global mosaics to facilitate comparison. Figures and tables describing the imaging sequences have been included to provide a guide to the more complete set of 3400 Venus images on file at the National Space Science Data Center.

  5. Pioneer Venus orbiter electron temperature probe

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brace, Larry H.

    1994-01-01

    This document lists the scientific accomplishments of the Orbiter Electron Temperature Probe (OETP) group. The OETP instrument was fabricated in 1976, integrated into the PVO spacecraft in 1977, and placed in orbit about Venus in December 1978. The instrument operated flawlessly for nearly 14 years until PVO was lost as it entered the Venusian atmosphere in October 1992. The OETP group worked closely with other PVO investigators to examine the Venus ionosphere and its interactions with the solar wind. After the mission was completed we continued to work with the scientist selected for the Venus Data Analysis Program (VDAP), and this is currently leading to additional publications.

  6. 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.

  7. A study of Shocks in the vicinity of Venus during the passage of an ICME

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pope, S. A.; Dimmock, A. P.; Zhang, T.; Balikhin, M. A.; Fedorov, A.

    2013-12-01

    On 5th November 2011 an ICME with a velocity of about 850 km/s and IMF of 40nT (nominal values at 0.72AU are about 400 km/s and 10nT) passed Venus. Venus Express (VEX) was in the solar wind during the onset of the ICME which lasted for the duration of the passage of the spacecraft through the induced magnetosphere of Venus. Magnetic field data at 1Hz is available for the duration of the ICME and the location of the spacecraft allows the shock in the solar wind due to the super magnetosonic ICME and the subsequent bow shock of Venus under extreme solar wind conditions to be studied. Plasma data is also available during the ICME passage, both prior to VEX crossing the bow shock of Venus and while it is in the induced magnetosphere. On the inbound passage the location of the bow shock of Venus is compressed by around 0.22 Rv (at 19o SZA) compared to its position on the previous and following days and on the outbound passage the spacecraft makes several crossings of the bow shock, suggesting a dynamic boundary at 149o SZA, which is increased from the previous and following days location by 0.5-2.7 Rv. The step in the magnetic field on the inbound shock crossing was approximately 60% higher than observed on the previous and following days when the IMF was near the nominal value of 10nT. Consequently this leads to a significantly greater field in the induced magnetosphere than is usually present. During the multiple outbound crossings of the bow shock, strong wave precursors are observed. The paper compares the structure of both the inbound and outbound bow shock crossings with those observed at Venus for both nominal conditions and previous ICME passages.

  8. 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

  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 1.571μm and 141 v1+4v2+v3 at 1.606μm.

  10. Fluorescent labeling of both GABAergic and glycinergic neurons in vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT)-venus transgenic mouse.

    PubMed

    Wang, Y; Kakizaki, T; Sakagami, H; Saito, K; Ebihara, S; Kato, M; Hirabayashi, M; Saito, Y; Furuya, N; Yanagawa, Y

    2009-12-15

    Inhibitory neurons play important roles in a number of brain functions. They are composed of GABAergic neurons and glycinergic neurons, and vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT) is specifically expressed in these neurons. Since the inhibitory neurons are scattered around in the CNS, it is difficult to identify these cells in living brain preparations. The glutamate decarboxylase (GAD) 67-GFP knock-in mouse has been widely used for the identification of GABAergic neurons, but their GAD67 expression was decreased compared to the wild-type mice. To overcome such a problem and to highlight the function and morphology of inhibitory neurons, we generated four lines of VGAT-Venus transgenic mice (lines #04, #29, #39 and #49) expressing Venus fluorescent protein under the control of mouse VGAT promoter. We found higher expression level of Venus transcripts and proteins as well as brighter fluorescent signal in line #39 mouse brains, compared to brains of other lines examined. By Western blots and spectrofluorometric measurements of forebrain, the line #39 mouse showed stronger GFP immunoreactivity and brighter fluorescent intensity than the GAD67-GFP knock-in mouse. In addition, Venus was present not only in somata, but also in neurites in the line #39 mouse by histological studies. In situ hybridization analysis showed that the expression pattern of Venus in the line #39 mouse was similar to that of endogenous VGAT. Double immunostaining analysis in line #39 mouse showed that Venus-expressing cells are primarily immunoreactive for GABA in cerebral cortex, hippocampus and cerebellar cortex and for GABA or glycine in dorsal cochlear nucleus. These results demonstrate that the VGAT-Venus line #39 mouse should be useful for studies on function and morphology of inhibitory neurons in the CNS.

  11. Global Geological Map of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivanov, M. A.

    2008-09-01

    Introduction: The Magellan SAR images provide sufficient data to compile a geological map of nearly the entire surface of Venus. Such a global and selfconsistent map serves as the base to address the key questions of the geologic history of Venus. 1) What is the spectrum of units and structures that makes up the surface of Venus [1-3]? 2) What volcanic/tectonic processes do they characterize [4-7]? 3) Did these processes operated locally, regionally, or globally [8- 11]? 4) What are the relationships of relative time among the units [8]? 5) At which length-scale these relationships appear to be consistent [8-10]? 6) What is the absolute timing of formation of the units [12-14]? 7) What are the histories of volcanism, tectonics and the long-wavelength topography on Venus? 7) What model(s) of heat loss and lithospheric evolution [15-21] do these histories correspond to? The ongoing USGS program of Venus mapping has already resulted in a series of published maps at the scale 1:5M [e.g. 22-30]. These maps have a patch-like distribution, however, and are compiled by authors with different mapping philosophy. This situation not always results in perfect agreement between the neighboring areas and, thus, does not permit testing geological hypotheses that could be addressed with a self-consistent map. Here the results of global geological mapping of Venus at the scale 1:10M is presented. The map represents a contiguous area extending from 82.5oN to 82.5oS and comprises ~99% of the planet. Mapping procedure: The map was compiled on C2- MIDR sheets, the resolution of which permits identifying the basic characteristics of previously defined units. The higher resolution images were used during the mapping to clarify geologic relationships. When the map was completed, its quality was checked using published USGS maps [e.g., 22-30] and the catalogue of impact craters [31]. The results suggest that the mapping on the C2-base provided a highquality map product. Units and

  12. Measuring Venus' Bulk Elemental Composition with BECA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parsons, A. M.; Grau, J.; Lawrence, D. J.; Miles, J.; Peplowski, P. N.; Perkins, L.; Schweitzer, J. S.; Starr, R. D.

    2016-10-01

    The Bulk Elemental Composition Analyzer (BECA) instrument uses high energy neutrons and gamma rays to measure the bulk elemental composition of Venus beneath a landed probe. We will present the results of a BECA prototype tested at NASA/GSFC.

  13. ISS Update: After the Venus Transit

    NASA Video Gallery

    ISS Update commentator Brandi Dean interviewed astronaut Mario Runco about the results of the Expedition 31 crew’s effort to photograph Venus transit. Questions? Ask us on Twitter @NASA_Johnson a...

  14. 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.

  15. Future Role of Aerial Platforms at Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cutts, J. A.; Pauken, M.; Hall, J. L.; Baines, K. H.; Grimm, R.

    2017-02-01

    This paper reviews the brief experience with deploying aerial platforms at Venus, the various mission concepts that have been proposed over the last three decades, and a vision for their application through 2050.

  16. Hinode Views the 2012 Venus Transit

    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...

  17. Hinode Views the Transit of Venus

    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 ...

  18. Obliquity Variations of a Rapidly Rotating Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quarles, Billy L.; Barnes, Jason W.; Lissauer, Jack J.; Chambers, John E.; Hedman, Matthew M.

    2016-05-01

    Venus clearly differs from Earth in terms of its spin and atmospheric composition, where the former is controlled by solid-body and atmospheric thermal tides. However, this may have been different during earlier stages of planetary evolution, when the Sun was fainter and the Venusian atmosphere was less massive. We investigate how the axial tilt, or obliquity, would have varied during this epoch considering a rapidly rotating Venus. Through numerical simulation of an ensemble of hypothetical Early Venuses, we find the obliquity variation to be simpler than a Moonless Earth (Lissauer et al., 2012). Most low-obliquity Venuses show very low total obliquity variability comparable to that of the real Moon-influenced Earth.

  19. 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)

  20. 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)

  1. The thermosphere and ionosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cravens, T. E.

    1992-01-01

    Our knowledge of the upper atmosphere and ionosphere of Venus and its interaction with the solar wind has advanced dramatically over the last decade, largely due to the data obtained during the Pioneer Venus mission and to the theoretical work that was motivated by this data. Most of this information was obtained during the period 1978 through 1981, when the periapsis of the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) was still in the measurable atmosphere. However, solar gravitational perturbations will again lower the PVO periapsis into the upper atmosphere in September 1992, prior to the destruction of the spacecraft toward the end of this year. The physics and chemistry of the thermosphere and ionosphere of Venus are reviewed.

  2. Surface reflections of Pioneer Venus probe signals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Croft, T. A.

    1980-01-01

    As the four Pioneer Venus probes fell within the atmosphere toward the surface of Venus, each of them transmitted a radio signal directly to earth. Because of the relatively broad antenna beamwidth of these small probes, some of the transmitted power went down to the surface of Venus. This paper reports the discovery that the radio signals scattered off the surface are not only detectable but that their characteristics can be determined with a surprising degree of certainty. From these characteristics one can determine parameters of the Venusian atmospheric winds and of the surface that promise to be useful. Most of the scattered energy is that which originally radiated from the probes in a near-horizontal direction; the downward-directed radiation is detectable but much weaker. Refraction in the atmosphere of Venus clearly plays a significant role in establishing both the strength of scatter and its Doppler shift.

  3. Venus general atmosphere circulation described by Pioneer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1981-01-01

    The predominant weather pattern for Venus is described. Wind directions and wind velocities are given. Possible driving forces of the winds are presented and include solar heating, planetary rotation, and the greenhouse effect.

  4. The development of studies of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cruikshank, D. P.

    1983-01-01

    An historical account is given of the major figures, observational techniques and theories involved in Venus studies prior to space probe-based researches. Those who followed Galileo Galilei (1610) with the simple telescopes of the 17th and early 18th centuries confirmed the phases of the illuminated face of Venus. Lomonosov (1761) noted a gray halo surrounding the planet as it was partially silhouetted against the sun, and correctly inferred that Venus has an atmosphere. The brightness and nearly featureless appearance of the planet, together with the halo effect, led to the early conclusion that the atmosphere is cloudy. While visual and photographic spectroscopy had been applied to Venus many times, the first indication of spectral features different from the solar spectrum was found in 1932 with the high dispersion spectrograph on the Mt. Wilson 2.5-m telescope.

  5. Evidence for retrograde lithospheric subduction on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sandwell, David T.; Schubert, Gerald

    1992-01-01

    Annular moats and outer rises around large Venus coronas such as Artemis, Latona, and Eithinoha are similar in arcuate planform and topography to the trenches and outer rises of terrestrial subduction zones. On earth, trenches and outer rises are modeled as the flexural response of a thin elastic lithosphere to the bending moment of the subducted slab; this lithospheric flexure model also accounts for the trenches and outer rises outboard of the major coronas on Venus. Accordingly, it is proposed that retrograde lithospheric subduction may be occurring on the margins of the large Venus coronas while compensating back-arc extension is occurring in the expanding coronas interiors. Similar processes may be taking place at other deep arcuate trenches or chasmata on Venus such as those in the Dali-Diana chasmata area of aestern Aphrodite Terra.

  6. Expedition Seven Launched Aboard Soyez Spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    Destined for the International Space Station (ISS), a Soyez TMA-1 spacecraft launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan on April 26, 2003. Aboard are Expedition Seven crew members, cosmonaut Yuri I. Malenchenko, Expedition Seven mission commander, and Astronaut Edward T. Lu, Expedition Seven NASA ISS science officer and flight engineer. Expedition Six crew members returned to Earth aboard the Russian spacecraft after a 5 and 1/2 month stay aboard the ISS. Photo credit: NASA/Scott Andrews

  7. An Infrared Radiative Transfer Parameterization For A Venus General Circulation Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eymet, Vincent; Fournier, R.; Lebonnois, S.; Bullock, M. A.; Dufresne, J.; Hourdin, F.

    2006-09-01

    A new 3-dimensional General Circulation Model (GCM) of Venus'atmosphere is curently under development at the Laboratoire de Meteorologie Dynamique, in the context of the Venus-Express mission. Special attention was devoted to the parameterization of infrared radiative transfer: this parameterization has to be both very fast and sufficiently accurate in order to provide valid results over extented periods of time. We have developped at the Laboratoire d'Energetique a Monte-Carlo code for computing reference radiative transfer results for optically thick inhomogeneous scattering planetary atmospheres over the IR spectrum. This code (named KARINE) is based on a Net-Exchange Rates formulation, and uses a k-distribution spectral model. The Venus spectral data, that was compiled at the Southwest Research Institute, accounts for gaseous absorption and scattering, typical clouds absorption and scattering, as well as CO2 and H2O absorption continuums. We will present the Net-Exchange Rates matrix that was computed using the Monte-Carlo approach. We will also show how this matrix has been used in order to produce a first-order radiative transfer parameterization that is used in the LMD Venus GCM. In addition, we will present how the proposed radiative transfer model was used in a simple convective-radiative equilibrium model in order to reproduce the main features of Venus' temperature profile.

  8. [Transfection of HL-60 cells by Venus lentiviral vector].

    PubMed

    Li, Zheng; Hu, Shao-Yan; Cen, Jian-Nong; Chen, Zi-Xing

    2013-06-01

    In order to study the potential of Venus, lentiviral vector, applied to acute myeloid leukemia, the recombinant vector Venus-C3aR was transfected into 293T packing cells by DNA-calcium phosphate coprecipitation. All virus stocks were collected and transfected into HL-60, the GFP expression in HL-60 cells was measured by flow cytometry. The expression level of C3aR1 in transfected HL-60 cells was identified by RT-PCR and flow cytometry. The lentiviral toxicity on HL-60 was measured by using CCK-8 method and the ability of cell differentiation was observed. The results indicated that the transfection efficacy of lentiviral vector on HL-60 cells was more than 95%, which meets the needs for further study. C3aR1 expression on HL-60 cells increased after being transfected with recombinant lentiviral vector. Before and after transfection, the proliferation and differentiation of cells were not changed much. It is concluded that the lentiviral vector showed a high efficacy to transfect AML cells and can be integrated in genome of HL-60 cells to realize the stable expression of interest gene. Meanwhile, lentiviral vector can not affect HL-60 cell ability to proliferate and differentiate.

  9. Venus - Detailed mapping of Maxwell Montes region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexandrov, Yu. N.; Crymov, A. A.; Kotelnikov, V. A.; Petrov, G. M.; Rzhiga, O. N.; Sidorenko, A. I.; Sinilo, V. P.; Zakharov, A. I.; Akim, E. L.; Basilevski, A. T.; Kadnichanski, S. A.; Tjuflin, Yu. S.

    1986-03-01

    From October 1983 to July 1984, the north hemisphere of Venus, from latitude 30° to latitude 90°, was mapped by means of the radar imagers and altimeters of the spacecraft Venera 15 and Venera 16. This report presents the results of the radar mapping of the Maxwell Montes region, one of the most interesting features of Venus' surface. A radar mosaic map and contour map have been compiled.

  10. Particulate matter in the Venus atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ragent, B.; Esposito, L. W.; Tomasko, M. G.; Marov, M. IA.; Shari, V. P.

    1985-01-01

    The paper presents a summary of the data currently available (June 1984) describing the planet-enshrouding particulate matter in the Venus atmosphere. A description and discussion of the state of knowledge of the Venus clouds and hazes precedes the tables and plots. The tabular material includes a precis of upper haze and cloud-top properties, parameters for model-size distributions for particles and particulate layers, and columnar masses and mass loadings.

  11. A global traveling wave on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Michael D.; Gierasch, Peter J.; Schinder, Paul J.

    1992-01-01

    The dominant large-scale pattern in the clouds of Venus has been described as a 'Y' or 'Psi' and tentatively identified by earlier workers as a Kelvin wave. A detailed calculation of linear wave modes in the Venus atmosphere verifies this identification. Cloud feedback by infrared heating fluctuations is a plausible excitation mechanism. Modulation of the large-scale pattern by the wave is a possible explanation for the Y. Momentum transfer by the wave could contribute to sustaining the general circulation.

  12. A global traveling wave on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Michael D.; Gierasch, Peter J.; Schinder, Paul J.

    1993-01-01

    The dominant large-scale pattern in the clouds of Venus has been described as a 'Y' or 'Psi' and tentatively identified by earlier workers as a Kelvin wave. A detailed calculation of linear wave modes in the Venus atmosphere verifies this identification. Cloud feedback by infrared heating fluctuations is a plausible excitation mechanism. Modulation of the large-scale pattern by the wave is a possible explanation for the Y. Momentum transfer by the wave could contribute to sustaining the general circulation.

  13. Venus and the Archean Earth: Thermal considerations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sleep, N. H.

    1989-01-01

    The Archean Era of the Earth is not a direct analog of the present tectonics of Venus. In this regard, it is useful to review the state of the Archean Earth. Most significantly, the temperature of the adiabatic interior of the Earth was 200 to 300 C hotter than the current temperature. Preservation biases limit what can be learned from the Archean record. Archean oceanic crust, most of the planetary surface at any one time, has been nearly all subducted. More speculatively, the core of the Earth has probably cooled more slowly than the mantle. Thus the temperature contrast above the core-mantle boundary and the vigor of mantle plumes has increased with time on the Earth. The most obvious difference between Venus and the present Earth is the high surface temperature and hence a low effective viscosity of the lithosphere. In addition, the temperature contrast between the adiabatic interior and the surface, which drives convection, is less on Venus than on the Earth. It appears that the hot lithosphere enhanced tectonics on the early Venus significantly enough that its interior cooled faster than the Earth's. The best evidence for a cool interior of Venus comes from long wavelength gravity anomalies. The low interior temperatures retard seafloor spreading on Venus. The high surface temperatures on Venus enhance crustal deformation. That is, the lower crust may become ductile enough to permit significant flow between the upper crust and the mantle. There is thus some analogy to modern and ancient areas of high heat flow on the Earth. Archean crustal blocks typically remained stable for long intervals and thus overall are not good analogies to the deformation style on Venus.

  14. The Abundance of Sulfur in Venus Magmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1999-09-01

    Outgassing of sulfur gases due to volcanism within the past 100 My on Venus is probably responsible for the planet's globally encircling H2SO4 cloud layers. Dramatic changes in volcanic output on Venus would have altered the atmospheric inventory of sulfur gases, and hence the structure of its clouds (Bullock and Grinspoon, Icarus, submitted 1999). Although Magellan radar images provide some constraints on the magnitude of volcanism in the geologically recent past, little is known of the sulfur content of Venus lavas. In order to assess the effects that Venus' volcanic history may have had on cloud and therefore climate change, it is desirable to place some constraints on the abundance of sulfur in Venus magmas. The sulfur content of terrestrial volcanic lavas varies widely, depending upon the local sedimentary environment and the source and history of upwelling magmas. We estimate the average abundance of sulfur in Venus lavas from an analysis of the production and loss of atmospheric SO2. The volumetric rate of resurfacing on Venus in the recent past is approximately 0.1 to 2 km3/yr (Bullock et al., JGR 20, 1993, Basilevsky and Head, GRL 23, 1996). Outgassed SO2 reacts quickly with crustal carbonate -- residence times in the atmosphere with respect to the reaction SO2 + CaCO3 <=> CaSO4 + CO are about 2-30 My (Fegley and Prinn, Nature 337, 1989, Bullock and Grinspoon, Icarus, submitted 1999). Assuming steady state conditions and an abundance of 25-180 ppm of atmospheric SO2 (Oyama et al., JGR 85, 1980, Bertaux et al., JGR 101, 1996), we will discuss constraints on the abundance of this important greenhouse and cloud-precursor gas in Venus lavas.

  15. ISS Update: Science Aboard Kounotori3

    NASA Video Gallery

    NASA Public Affairs Officer Amiko Kauderer interviews Pete Hasbrook, associate program scientist, about the experiments traveling to the International Space Station aboard the H-II Transfer Vehicle...

  16. 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 Hα/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

  17. 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.

  18. Venus - Global gravity and topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNamee, J. B.; Borderies, N. J.; Sjogren, W. L.

    1993-05-01

    A new gravity field determination that has been produced combines both the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) and the Magellan Doppler radio data. Comparisons between this estimate, a spherical harmonic model of degree and order 21, and previous models show that significant improvements have been made. Results are displayed as gravity contours overlaying a topographic map. We also calculate a new spherical harmonic model of topography based on Magellan altimetry, with PVO altimetry included where gaps exist in the Magellan data. This model is also of degree and order 21, so in conjunction with the gravity model, Bouguer and isostatic anomaly maps can be produced. These results are very consistent with previous results, but reveal more spatial resolution in the higher latitudes.

  19. Energetic Neutral Atom Emissions From Venus: VEX Observations and Theoretical Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fok, M.-C.; Galli, A.; Tanaka, T.; Moore, T. E.; Wurz, P.; Holmstrom, M.

    2007-01-01

    Venus has almost no intrinsic magnetic field to shield itself from its surrounding environment. The solar wind thus directly interacts with the planetary ionosphere and atmosphere. One of the by-products of this close encounter is the production of energetic neutral atom (ENA) emissions. Theoretical studies have shown that significant amount of ENAs are emanated from the planet. The launch of the Venus Express (VEX) in 2005 provided the first light ever of the Venus ENA emissions. The observed ENA flux level and structure are in pretty good agreement with the theoretical studies. In this paper, we present VEX ENA data and the comparison with numerical simulations. We seek to understand the solar wind interaction with the planet and the impacts on its atmospheres.

  20. Sources of SO and SO2 in the Mesosphere of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yung, Y. L.; Zhang, X.; Liang, M. C.; Mills, F. P.; Belyaev, D. A.

    2011-10-01

    Venus Express and ground-based measurements of an inversion layer with enhanced concentrations of SO and SO2 in the mesosphere of Venus (Belyaev et al., 2008; 2010; Clancy et al. 2008) suggests a new source of gaseous sulfur that was not included in the previous models of Venus (see, e.g., Mills et al. 2007). A one-dimensional photochemistry-transport model is used to simulate the whole chemical system including oxygen-, hydrogen-, chlorine-, sulfur-, and nitrogen-bearing species (see schematic in Figure 1). The evaporation of aerosols composed of sulfuric acid (model A) or polysulfur (model B) above 90 km could provide a new source of gaseous sulfur species (Zhang et al. 2010; 2011). The implications of the new model are discussed in light of recent measurements (Sandor et al. 2011). Future measurements are needed to confirm the model predictions.

  1. Distribution of plasma and magnetic field in the Venus induced magnetosphere is strongly asymmetrical

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Zhang, T.-L.; Woch, J.; Wei, Y.; Fedorov, A.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.

    2013-09-01

    Venus Express spacecraft have provided us a wealth of in-situ observations of characteristics of induced magnetosphere of Venus. One of its important features is a distinct asymmetry in plasma and field characteristics between the hemisphere pointed in the direction of the motional electric field and the opposite hemisphere. Asymmetry starts from formation of the magnetic barrier, then continues to low altitudes where effects of finite conductivity become important and further to the near Venus tail where the magnetic tail and plasma sheet are formed. As a result, the structure and dynamics of the induced magnetosphere in both hemispheres occur different. We present different aspects of such an asymmetry and discuss possible mechanisms of its appearance.

  2. Distribution of plasma and magnetic field in the Venus induced magnetosphere is strongly asymmetrical

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Zhang, T.; Woch, J. G.; Wei, Y.; Fedorov, A.; Barabash, S. V.; Lundin, R. N.

    2013-12-01

    Venus Express spacecraft have provided us a wealth of in-situ observations of characteristics of induced magnetosphere of Venus. One of its important features is a distinct asymmetry in plasma and field characteristics between the hemisphere pointed in the direction of the motional electric field and the opposite hemisphere. Asymmetry starts from formation of the magnetic barrier, then continues to low altitudes where effects of finite conductivity become important and further to the near Venus tail where the magnetic tail and plasma sheet are formed. As a result, the structure and dynamics of the induced magnetosphere in both hemispheres occur different. We present different aspects of such an asymmetry and discuss possible mechanisms of its appearance.

  3. 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.

  4. Hypothetical flora and fauna of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ksanfomality, L. V.

    2014-12-01

    Hypothetical habitability of some of extrasolar planets is a fundamental question of science. Some of exoplanets possess physical conditions close to those of Venus. Therefore, the planet Venus, with its dense and hot (735 K) oxygen-free atmosphere of CO2, having a high pressure of 9.2 MPa at the surface, can be a natural laboratory for this kind of studies. The only existing data on the planet's surface are still the results obtained by the Soviet VENERA landers in the 1970s and 1980s. The TV experiments of Venera-9 and 10 (October, 1975) and Venera-13 and 14 (March, 1982) delivered 41 panoramas of Venus surface (or their fragments). There have not been any similar missions to Venus in the subsequent 39 and 32 years. In the absence of new landing missions to Venus, the VENERA panoramas have been re-processed. The results of these missions are studied anew. A dozen of relatively large objects, from a decimeter to half a meter in size, with an unusual morphology have been found which moved very slowly or changed slightly their shape. Their emergence by chance could hardly be explained by noise. Certain unusual findings that have similar structure were found in different areas of the planet. This paper presents the last results obtained of a search for hypothetical flora and fauna of Venus.

  5. Recent deformation rates on Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grimm, Robert E.

    1994-11-01

    Constraints on the recent geological evolution of Venus may be provided by quantitative estimates of the rates of the principal resurfacing processes, volcanism and tectonism. This paper focuses on the latter, using impact craters as strain indicators. The total postimpact tectonic strain lies in the range 0.5-6.5%, which defines a recent mean strain rate of 10-18-10-17/s when divided by the mean surface age. Interpretation of the cratering record as one of pure production requires a decline in resurfacing rates at about 500 Ma (catastrophic resurfacing model). If distributed tectonic resurfacing contributed strongly before that time, as suggested by the widespread occurrence of tessera as inliers, the mean global strain rate must have been at least approximately 10-15/s, which is also typical of terrestrial active margins. Numerical calculations of the response of the lithosphere to inferred mantle convective forces were performed to test the hypothesis that a decrease in surface strain rate by at least two orders of magnitude could be caused by a steady decline in heat flow over the last billion years. Parameterized convection models predict that the mean global thermal gradient decreases by only about 5 K/km over this time; even with the exponential dependence of viscosity upon temperature, the surface strain rate drops by little more than one order of magnitude. Strongly unsteady cooling and very low thermal gradients today are necessary to satisfy the catastrophic model. An alternative, uniformitarian resurfacing hypothesis holds that Venus is resurfaced in quasi-random 'patches' several hundred kilometers in size that occur in response to changing mantle convection patterns.

  6. 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

  7. Dynamics investigation in the Venus upper atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliorini, A.; Altieri, F.; Shakun, A.; Zasova, L.; Piccioni, G.; Bellucci, G.

    The O_2 nightglow emissions in the infrared spectral range are important features to investigate dynamics at the mesospheric altitudes, in the planetary atmosphere. In this work, we analyzed the profiles obtained at limb by the VIRTIS spectrometer on board the Venus Express mission, acquired during the mission period from 2006-07-05 to 2008-08-15 to investigate possible gravity waves characteristics at the airglow altitudes. Indeed, several profiles present double peaked structures that can be interpreted as due to gravity waves. In analogy to the Earth's and Mars cases, we use a well-known theory to model the O_2 nightglow emissions affected by gravity waves propagation, in order to support this thesis and derive the waves properties. We discuss results from 30 profiles showing double peaked structures, focusing on vertical wavelength and wave amplitude of the possible gravity waves. On average, the double peaked profiles are compatible with the effects of gravity waves with a vertical wavelength ranging between 7 and 16 km, and wave amplitude of 3-14%. A comparison with gravity waves properties in the Mars and Earth's atmospheres, using the same theory, is also proposed \\citep{altieri_2014}. \\ The research is supported by ASI (contract ASI-INAF I/050/10/0).

  8. 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

  9. Asteroid flux and impact cratering rate on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shoemaker, E. M.; Wolfe, R. F.; Shoemaker, C. S.

    1991-01-01

    By the end of 1990, 65 Venus-crossing asteroids were recognized; these represent 59 percent of the known Earth-crossing asteroids. Further studies, chiefly numerical integrations of orbit evolution, may reveal one or two more Venus crossers among the set of discovered asteroids. A Venus crosser was defined as an asteroid whose orbit can intersect the orbit of Venus as a result of secular (long range) perturbations. Venus crossers revolving on orbits that currently overlap the orbit of Venus are called Venapol asteroids, and those on orbit that don't overlap are called Venamor asteroids; 42 Venapols and 23 Venamors were recognized. Collision probabilities with Venus for 60 of the known Venus crossers were determined.

  10. Large Volcanic Rises on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smrekar, Suzanne E.; Kiefer, Walter S.; Stofan, Ellen R.

    1997-01-01

    Large volcanic rises on Venus have been interpreted as hotspots, or the surface manifestation of mantle upwelling, on the basis of their broad topographic rises, abundant volcanism, and large positive gravity anomalies. Hotspots offer an important opportunity to study the behavior of the lithosphere in response to mantle forces. In addition to the four previously known hotspots, Atla, Bell, Beta, and western Eistla Regiones, five new probable hotspots, Dione, central Eistla, eastern Eistla, Imdr, and Themis, have been identified in the Magellan radar, gravity and topography data. These nine regions exhibit a wider range of volcano-tectonic characteristics than previously recognized for venusian hotspots, and have been classified as rift-dominated (Atla, Beta), coronae-dominated (central and eastern Eistla, Themis), or volcano-dominated (Bell, Dione, western Eistla, Imdr). The apparent depths of compensation for these regions ranges from 65 to 260 km. New estimates of the elastic thickness, using the 90 deg and order spherical harmonic field, are 15-40 km at Bell Regio, and 25 km at western Eistla Regio. Phillips et al. find a value of 30 km at Atla Regio. Numerous models of lithospheric and mantle behavior have been proposed to interpret the gravity and topography signature of the hotspots, with most studies focusing on Atla or Beta Regiones. Convective models with Earth-like parameters result in estimates of the thickness of the thermal lithosphere of approximately 100 km. Models of stagnant lid convection or thermal thinning infer the thickness of the thermal lithosphere to be 300 km or more. Without additional constraints, any of the model fits are equally valid. The thinner thermal lithosphere estimates are most consistent with the volcanic and tectonic characteristics of the hotspots. Estimates of the thermal gradient based on estimates of the elastic thickness also support a relatively thin lithosphere (Phillips et al.). The advantage of larger estimates of

  11. Geologic map of the Artemis Chasma quadrangle (V-48), Venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bannister, Roger A.; Hansen, Vicki L.

    2010-01-01

    . So although it seems clear what Artemis is not, there is little consensus about what Artemis is, much less how Artemis formed. Debate during the past decade has resulted in the proposal of at least four hypotheses for Artemis' formation. The first (herein referred to as H1) is that Artemis Chasma represents a zone of northwest-directed convergence and subduction. The second hypothesis (herein referred to as H2) is that Artemis consists of a composite structure with a part of its interior region marking the exposure of deformed ductile deep-crustal rocks analogous to a terrestrial metamorphic core complex. The third (herein referred to as H3) is that Artemis reflects the surface expression of an ancient (>3.5 Ga) huge bolide impact event on cold strong lithosphere. The fourth hypothesis (herein referred to as H4) is that Artemis marks the surface expression of a deep mantle plume. Each of these hypotheses holds different implications for Venus geodynamics and evolution processes, and for terrestrial planet processes in general. Viability of H1 would provide support that terrestrial-like plate-tectonic processes once occurred on Earth's sister planet. The feasibility of H2 would require high values of crustal extension and therefore imply that significant horizontal displacements occurred on Venus-displacement that may or may not be related to terrestrial-like plate-tectonic processes. The possibility of H3 would suggest that Venus' surface is extremely old, and that Venus has experienced very little dynamic activity for the last 3.5 billion years or more; this would further imply that Venus is essentially tectonically dead, and has been for most of its history. This view contrasts strongly with studies that highlight a rich history of Venus including activity at least as young as 750 million years ago, and quite likely up to the present. If H4 has credibility, then Artemis could provide clues to cooling mechanisms of Earth's sister planet. Each of these hypotheses

  12. Atmospheric thermal structure and cloud features in the southern hemisphere of Venus as retrieved from VIRTIS/VEX radiation measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haus, R.; Kappel, D.; Arnold, G.

    2014-04-01

    Thermal structure and cloud features in the atmosphere of Venus are investigated using spectroscopic nightside measurements recorded by the Visible and InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) aboard ESA’s Venus Express mission in the moderate resolution infrared mapping channel (M-IR, 1-5 μm). New methodical approaches and retrieval results for the northern hemisphere have been recently described by Haus et al. (Haus, R., Kappel, D., Arnold, G. [2013]. Planet. Space Sci. 89, 77-101. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pss.2013.09.020). Now, southern hemisphere maps of mesospheric temperature and cloud parameter fields are presented that cover variations with altitude, latitude, local time, and mission time. Measurements from the entire usable data archive are utilized comprising radiation spectra recorded during eight Venus solar days between April 2006 and October 2008. Zonal averages of retrieved temperature altitude profiles in both hemispheres are very similar and give evidence of global N-S axial symmetry of atmospheric temperature structure. Cold collar and warmer polar vortex regions exhibit the strongest temperature variability with standard deviations up to 8.5 K at 75°S and 63 km altitude compared with about 1.0 K at low and mid latitudes above 75 km. The mesospheric temperature field strongly depends on local time. At altitudes above about 75 km, the atmosphere is warmer in the second half of night, while the dawn side at lower altitudes is usually colder than the dusk side by about 8 K. Local minimum temperature of 220 K occurs at 03:00 h local time at 65 km and 60°S. Temperature standard deviation at polar latitudes is particularly large near midnight. Temperature variability with solar longitude is forced by solar thermal tides with a dominating diurnal component. The influence of observed cloud parameter changes on retrieved mesospheric zonal average temperature structure is moderate and does not exceed 2-3 K at altitudes between 60 and 75 km

  13. Venus: A search for clues to early biological possibilities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colin, Larry; Kasting, James F.

    1992-01-01

    The extensive evidence that there is no extant life on Venus is summarized. The current atmospheric environment, which is far too hostile by terrestrial standards to support life, is described. However, exobiologists are interested in the possibility of extinct life on Venus. The early history of Venus is discussed in terms of its ability to sustain life that may now be extinct.

  14. Lithospheric and atmospheric interaction on the planet Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Volkov, Vladislav P.

    1991-01-01

    Lithospheric and atmospheric interaction in the planet Venus are discussed. The following subject areas are covered: (1) manifestation of exogenic processes using photogeological data; (2) the chemical composition and a chemical model of the troposphere of Venus; (3) the mineral composition of surface rock on Venus; and (4) the cycles of volatile components.

  15. 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.

  16. Understanding Venus to understand the Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widemann, T.; Tanga, P.

    2012-12-01

    Despite having almost the same size and bulk composition as the Earth, Venus possesses an extreme climate with a surface pressure of 90 bars and temperatures of 740 K. At visible wavelengths the Venus disk appears covered by thick clouds.The core atmospheric processes of Venus and the Earth are similar, despite the different, extraordinary paths they took since their simultaneous formation in the solar system's habitable zone. There are several indications that the composition of the Venus atmosphere has undergone large changes, such as an early runaway climate, and it is likely that the planet has lost a large amount of water through dissociation in the upper atmosphere due to ultraviolet radiation and the subsequent escape of hydrogen. SO2 is thought to originate from volcanism. H2O and SO2 react to form H2SO4 which condenses to form clouds. In past centuries, astronomers and explorers including Captain James Cook observed transits to measure the scale of the solar system. On 5-6 June 2012 we observed the last transit of Venus in this century. Close to the ingress and egress phases, the fraction of Venus disk outside the solar photosphere appears outlined by a thin arc of light, called the aureole. We have shown that the deviation due to refraction and the luminosity of the aureole are related to the local density scale height and the altitude of the refraction layer. As different portions of the arc can yield different values of these parameters, the rare transit event thus provides a unique insight of the Venus mesosphere. The polar region, significantly brighter in initial phases due to larger scale height of the polar mesosphere, appears consistently offset toward morning terminator by about 15deg. latitude, peaking at 75N at 6:00 local time. This result reflects local latitudinal structure in the polar mesosphere, either in temperature or aerosol altitude distribution. Detailed comparative climatology of Venus, an Earth-size planet and understanding why it

  17. Deuterium on Venus: Observations from Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lutz, Barry L.; Debergh, C.; Bezard, B.; Owen, T.; Crisp, D.; Maillard, J.-P.

    1991-01-01

    In view of the importance of the deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio in understanding the evolutionary scenario of planetary atmospheres and its relationship to understanding the evolution of our own Earth, we undertook a series of observations designed to resolve previous observational conflicts. We observed the dark side of Venus in the 2.3 micron spectral region in search of both H2O and HDO, which would provide us with the D/H ratio in Venus' atmosphere. We identified a large number of molecular lines in the region, belonging to both molecules, and, using synthetic spectral techniques, obtained mixing ratios of 34 plus or minus 10 ppm and 1.3 plus or minus 0.2 ppm for H2O and HDO, respectively. These mixing ratios yield a D/H ratio for Venus of D/H equals 1.9 plus or minus 0.6 times 10 (exp 12) and 120 plus or minus 40 times the telluric ratio. Although the detailed interpretation is difficult, our observations confirm that the Pioneer Venus Orbiter results and establish that indeed Venus had a period in its early history in which it was very wet, perhaps not unlike the early wet period that seems to have been present on Mars, and that, in contrast to Earth, lost much of its water over geologic time.

  18. Comparative hypsometric analysis of Earth and Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenblatt, P.; Pinet, P. C.; Thouvenot, E.

    1994-03-01

    The comparison between Earth and Venus global hypsometric distributions is reinvestigated on the basis of the high-resolution data provided by the recent Magellan global topographic coverage of Venus' surface, and the detailed ETOPO-5 topographic database for the Earth's surface. The study of the cumulative hypsometric curve for both planets reveals that there exists a domain of elevation for which the relationship between the elevation and the square root of cumulative area percentage is linear. This domain covers about 80% of the mapped venusian surface and nearly all the terrestrial oceanic surface (55% of the earth's surface) and corresponds to an elevation range of about 2000 m for both planets. Proposing the upper threshold elevation of this domain as a common geophysical reference level, it is shown that the terrestrial oceanic peak and the venusian peak coincide very closely. In addition, the terrestrial and venusian hypsometric distributions for elevations lower than this reference level are quite similar, in their amplitude, modal distribution, and pronounced symmetry. The correspondence of the venusian peak with the terrestrial oceanic peak is a striking feature, but it does not necessarily imply the occurrence of plate tectonics on Venus. The present observation is consistent with the existence of a similar thermal isostasy acting at the planetary scale. It places an upper bound at 90 +/- 10 km for the modal thermal lithospheric thickness of Venus, if the Venus mantle thermal conditions are earth-like. This estimate is reduced if hotter conditions occur.

  19. HAVOC: High Altitude Venus Operational Concept - An Exploration Strategy for Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arney, Dale; Jones, Chris

    2015-01-01

    The atmosphere of Venus is an exciting destination for both further scientific study and future human exploration. A lighter-than-air vehicle can carry either a host of instruments and probes, or a habitat and ascent vehicle for a crew of two astronauts to explore Venus for up to a month. The mission requires less time to complete than a crewed Mars mission, and the environment at 50 km is relatively benign, with similar pressure, density, gravity, and radiation protection to the surface of Earth. A recent internal NASA study of a High Altitude Venus Operational Concept (HAVOC) led to the development of an evolutionary program for the exploration of Venus, with focus on the mission architecture and vehicle concept for a 30 day crewed mission into Venus's atmosphere. Key technical challenges for the mission include performing the aerocapture maneuvers at Venus and Earth, inserting and inflating the airship at Venus, and protecting the solar panels and structure from the sulfuric acid in the atmosphere. With advances in technology and further refinement of the concept, missions to the Venusian atmosphere can expand humanity's future in space.

  20. NASA's Venus Science and Technology Definition Team: A Flagship Mission to Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bullock, Mark Alan; Senske, D. A.; Balint, T. S.; Campbell, B. A.; Chassefiere, E.; Colaprete, A.; Cutts, J. A.; Glaze, L.; Gorevan, S.; Grinspoon, D. H.; Hall, J.; Hartford, W.; Hashimoto, G. L.; Head, J. W.; Hunter, G.; Johnson, N.; Kiefer, W. S.; Kolawa, E. A.; Kremic, T.; Kwok, J.; Limaye, S. S.; Mackwell, S. J.; Marov, M. Y.; Ocampo, A.; Schubert, G.; Stofan, E. R.; Svedhem, H.; Titov, D. V.; Treiman, A. H.

    2008-09-01

    The Venus Science and Technology Definition Team (STDT) was formed by NASA to look at science objectives, mission architecture, science investigations, and instrument payload for a Flagship-class mission to Venus. This $3-4B mission, to launch in the 2020-2025 timeframe, should revolutionize our understanding of how climate works on terrestrial planets, including the close relationship between volcanism, tectonism, the interior, and the atmosphere. It would also be capable of resolving the geologic history of Venus, including the existence and persistence of an ancient ocean. Achieving all these objectives will be necessary to understand the habitability of extrasolar terrestrial planets that should be detected in the next few years. The Venus STDT is comprised of scientists and engineers from the United States, the Russian Federation, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Japan. The team began work in January 2008, gave an interim report at NASA headquarters in May, and will deliver a final report in December 2008. The Venus STDT will also produce a technology roadmap to identify crucial investments to meet the unique challenges of in situ Venus exploration. We will discuss the mission architecture and payload that have been designed to address the science objectives, and the methods we used. Most of the science objectives in the latest VEXAG white paper can be addressed by a Venus Flagship mission, and equally importantly, NASA can fly a large mission to another Earth-sized planet with the explicit intention of better understanding our own.

  1. Venus - Sag Caldera 'Sachs Patera

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    This image of Sachs Patera on Venus is centered at 49 degrees north, 334 degrees east. Defined as a sag-caldera, Sachs is an elliptical depression 130 meters (81 feet) in depth, spanning 40 kilometers (25 miles) in width along its longest axis. The morphology implies that a chamber of molten material drained and collapsed, forming a depression surrounded by concentric scarps spaced 2-to-5 kilometers (1.2- to-3 miles) apart. The arc-shaped set of scarps, extending out to the north from the prominent ellipse, is evidence for a separate episode of withdrawal; the small lobe-shaped extension to the southwest may represent an additional event. Solidified lava flows 10-to-25 kilometers (6-to-16 miles) long, give the caldera its flower-like appearance. The flows are a lighter tone of gray in the radar data because the lava is blockier in texture and consequently returns more radar waves. Much of the lava, which was evacuated from the chamber, probably traveled to other locations underground, while some of it may have surfaced further south. This is unlike calderas on Earth, where a rim of lava builds up in the immediate vicinity of the caldera.

  2. Chemical composition of Venus clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krasnopolsky, V. A.

    1985-01-01

    From estimates of drying effect in the cloud layer, data of the Venera 14 X-ray fluorescent spectroscopy, and evaluation of photochemical production of sulfuric acid, it follows that sulfuric acid and/or products of its further conversion should constitute not only the Mode 2 particles but most of the Mode 3 particles as well. The eddy mixing coefficient equal 20,000 sq cm per sec in the cloud layer. The presence of ferric chloride in the cloud layer is indicated by the Venus u.v. absorption spectrum in the range of 3200-5000 A, by the Venera 12 X-ray fluorescent spectrum, by the coincidence of the calculated FeCl3 condensate density profile and that of the Mode 1 in the middle and lower cloud layer, as well as by the upward flux of FeCl3 from the middle cloud layer which provides the necessary concentration of FeCl3 in H2SO4 solution. FeCl3 as the second absorber explains the localization of absorption in the upper cloud layer due to the FeCl3 conversion to ferric sulfate near the boundary between the upper and middle cloud layers. Other possible absorbers such as sulfur, ammonium pyrosulfite, nitrosylsulfuric acid, etc. are discussed.

  3. A radar image of Venus.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goldstein, R. M.; Rumsey, H. C.

    1972-01-01

    Radar scans of Venus have yielded a brightness map of a large portion of the surface. The bright area in the south (alpha) and the twin such areas in the north (beta and delta) were first discovered by spectral analysis of radar echos. When range-gating is also applied, their shapes are revealed, and they are seen to be roundish and about 1000 km across. Although radar brightness can be the result of either intrinsic reflectivity or surface roughness, polarization studies show these features to be rough (to the scale of the wavelength, 12.5 cm). Dark, circular areas can also be seen, many with bright central spots. The dark areas are probably smooth. The blurring of the equatorial strip is an artifact of the range-Doppler geometry; all resolution disappears at the equator. Another artifact of the method is the 'ghost', in the south, of the images of beta and delta. Such ghosts appear only at the eastern and western extremes of the map.

  4. Venus Balloons using Water Vapor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izutsu, N.; Yajima, N.; Honda, H.; Imamura, T.

    We propose an inflatable balloon using water vapor for the lifting gas, which is liquid in the transportation stage before entry into the high temperature atmosphere. The envelope of the balloon has an outer layer for gas barrier (a high-temperature resistant film) and an inner layer for liquid water keeping. In the descent stage using a parachute, water widely held just inside the balloon envelope can be quickly vaporized by a lot of heat flux from the surrounding high-temperature atmosphere owing to the large surface area of the balloon. As neither gas containers nor heat exchangers are necessary, we can construct a simple, lightweight and small size Venus balloon probe system. Tentative floating altitude is 35 km below the thick clouds in the Venusian atmosphere. Selection of balloon shape and material for balloon envelope are discussed in consideration of the Venusian environment such as high-temperature, high-pressure, and sulfuric acid. Balloon deployment and inflation sequence is numerically simulated. In case of the total floating mass of 10 kg at the altitude of 35 km, the volume and mass of the balloon is 1.5 cubic meters, and 3.5 kg, respectively. The shape of the balloon is chosen to be cylindrical with a small diameter. The mass of li fting gas can be determined as 4.3 kg and the remaining 2.2 kg becomes the payload mass. The mass of the total balloon system is also just 10 kg excluding the entry capsule.

  5. In situ and remote measurements of ions escaping from Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kollmann, P.; Brandt, P. C.

    2013-12-01

    Venus is thought to lose a large fraction of its atmosphere in the form ions, mainly via pickup. The relative loss rate of the exosphere as neutrals or ions is not known, nor is the flux of escaping ions well constrained. Knowledge of these processes will shed light on the role an intrinsic magnetic field has in atmospheric erosion. We use the complementary in-situ plasma and energetic neutral atom (ENA) measurements from the Venus Express (VEx) spacecraft in order to constrain the ion escape. VEx completed about 2500 orbits to date and reached altitudes as low as 200km. The ASPERA/IMA instrument measured directional proton and oxygen ion spectra in the 10eV to 40keV range. We bin the data accumulated over the mission in space and bulk flow direction, yielding a direct measure of the local ion escape flux. While such in-situ measurements provide data without ambiguity, they are limited by the orbital coverage. This is why we include remote ENA measurements from the ASPERA/NPD (100eV to 10keV) instrument to our study. ENAs are created when escaping ions charge exchange with the high atmosphere atoms or molecules. We have done an exhaustive analysis of the data, excluding time periods of instrument contamination. Most ENA emission originates from low altitudes above Venus' limb. These measurements will be compared with the in-situ data, which allows constraining the atmospheric density at high altitudes. Interestingly, there are also ENA emissions from other directions, which were not sampled in-situ. This allows us to put a lower limit to the escape from these regions.

  6. Glory on Venus cloud tops and the unknown UV absorber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markiewicz, W. J.; Petrova, E.; Shalygina, O.; Almeida, M.; Titov, D. V.; Limaye, S. S.; Ignatiev, N.; Roatsch, T.; Matz, K. D.

    2014-05-01

    We report on the implications of the observations of the glory phenomenon made recently by Venus Express orbiter. Glory is an optical phenomenon that poses stringent constraints on the cloud properties. These observations thus enable us to constrain two properties of the particles at the cloud tops (about 70 km altitude) which are responsible for a large fraction of the solar energy absorbed by Venus. Firstly we obtain a very accurate estimate of the cloud particles size to be 1.2 μm with a very narrow size distribution. We also find that for the two observations presented here the clouds are homogenous, as far as cloud particles sizes are concerned, on scale of at least 1200 km. This is in contrast to previous estimates that were either local, from entry probes data, or averaged over space and time from polarization data. Secondly we find that the refractive index for the data discussed here is higher than that of sulfuric acid previously proposed for the clouds composition (Hansen, J.E., Hovenier, J.W. [1974]. J. Atmos. Sci. 31, 1137-1160; Ragent, B. et al. [1985]. Adv. Space Res. 5, 85-115). Assuming that the species contributing to the increase of the refractive index is the same as the unknown UV absorber, we are able to constrain the list of candidates. We investigated several possibilities and argue that either small ferric chloride (FeCl3) cores inside sulfuric acid particles or elemental sulfur coating their surface are good explanations of the observation. Both ferric chloride and elemental sulfur have been suggested in the past as candidates for the as yet unknown UV absorber (Krasnopolsky, V.A. [2006]. Planet. Space Sci. 54, 1352-1359; Mills, F.P. et al. [2007]. In: Esposito, L.W., Stofan, E.R., Cravens, T.E. (Eds.), Exploring Venus as a Terrestrial Planet, vol. 176. AGU Monogr. Ser., Washington, DC, pp. 73-100).

  7. Focal lengths of Venus Monitoring Camera from limb locations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, Sanjay S.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Krauss, R.; Ignatiev, N.; Roatsch, T.; Matz, K. D.

    2015-08-01

    The Venus Monitoring Camera (VMC) carried by European Space Agency's Venus Express orbiter (Svedhem et al., 2007) consists of four optical units, each with a separate filter casting an image on a single CCD (Markiewicz et al., 2007a, 2007b). The desire to capture as much of the planet in a single frame during the spacecraft's 24 h, 0.84 eccentricity orbit led to optics with 18° field of view. Analysis of Venus images obtained by the VMC indicated that the computed limb radius and altitude of haze layers were somewhat inconsistent with prior knowledge and expectations. Possible causes include errors in the knowledge of image geometry, misalignment of the optic axis from the pointing direction, and optical distortion. These were explored and eliminated, leaving only deviations from the ground and pre-solar damage estimate of the focal length lengths as the most likely reason. We use the location of planet's limb to estimate the focal length of each camera using images of the planet when the orbiter was more than 20,000 km from planet center. The method relies on the limb radius to be constant at least over a small range of solar zenith angles. We were able to achieve better estimates for the focal lengths for all four cameras and also estimate small offsets to the boresight alignment. An outcome of this analysis is the finding that the slant unit optical depth varies more rapidly with solar zenith angle in the afternoon as compared to morning, with lowest values at local noon. A variation of this level is also observed with latitude. Both are indicative of the presence of overlying haze above the clouds, and the morning afternoon asymmetry suggests different photochemical processes in destruction and production of the haze.

  8. Coupled Sulfur and Chlorine Chemistry in Venus' Upper Cloud Layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mills, Franklin P.

    2006-09-01

    Venus' atmosphere likely contains a rich variety of sulfur and chlorine compounds because HCl, SO2, and OCS have all been observed. Photodissociation of CO2 and SO2 in the upper cloud layer produces oxygen which can react directly or indirectly with SO2 to form SO3 and eventually H2SO4. Photodissociation of HCl within and above the upper cloud layer produces chlorine which can react with CO and O2 to form ClCO and ClC(O)OO. These two species have been identified as potentially critical intermediaries in the production of CO2. Much less work has been done on the potential coupling between sulfur and chlorine chemistry that may occur within the upper cloud layer. Several aspects have been examined in recent modeling: (1) linkage of the CO2 and sulfur oxidation cycles (based on ideas from Yung and DeMore, 1982), (2) reaction of Cl with SO2 to form ClSO2 (based on ideas from DeMore et al., 1985), and (3) the chemistry of SmCln for m,n = 1,2 (based on preliminary work in Mills, 1998). Initial results suggest the chemistry of SmCln may provide a pathway for accelerated production of polysulfur, Sx, if the oxygen abundance in the upper cloud layer is as small as is implied by the observational limit on O2 (Trauger and Lunine, 1983). Initial results also suggest that ClSO2 can act as a buffer which helps increase the scale height of SO2 and decrease the rate of production of H2SO4. This presentation will describe the results from this modeling; discuss their potential implications for the CO2, sulfur oxidation, and polysulfur cycles; and outline key observations from Venus Express that can help resolve existing questions concerning the chemistry of Venus' upper cloud. Partial funding for this research was provided by the Australian Research Council.

  9. Generation of a Tlx1(CreER-Venus) knock-in mouse strain for the study of spleen development.

    PubMed

    Nakahara, Ryo; Kawai, Yasuhiro; Oda, Akihisa; Nishimura, Miyuki; Murakami, Akikazu; Azuma, Takachika; Kaifu, Tomonori; Goitsuka, Ryo

    2014-11-01

    The spleen is a lymphoid organ that serves as a unique niche for immune reactions, extramedullary hematopoiesis, and the removal of aged erythrocytes from the circulation. While much is known about the immunological functions of the spleen, the mechanisms governing the development and organization of its stromal microenvironment remain poorly understood. Here we report the generation and analysis of a Tlx1(Cre) (ER) (-Venus) knock-in mouse strain engineered to simultaneously express tamoxifen-inducible CreER(T2) and Venus fluorescent protein under the control of regulatory elements of the Tlx1 gene, which encodes a transcription factor essential for spleen development. We demonstrated that Venus as well as CreER expression recapitulates endogenous Tlx1 transcription within the spleen microenvironment. When Tlx1(Cre) (ER) (-Venus) mice were crossed with the Cre-inducible reporter strain, Tlx1-expressing cells as well as their descendants were specifically labeled following tamoxifen administration. We also showed by cell lineage tracing that asplenia caused by Tlx1 deficiency is attributable to altered contribution of mesenchymal cells in the spleen anlage to the pancreatic mesenchyme. Thus, Tlx1(Cre) (ER) (-Venus) mice represent a new tool for lineage tracing and conditional gene manipulation of spleen mesenchymal cells, essential approaches for understanding the molecular mechanisms of spleen development.

  10. Pioneer Venus observations of plasma and field structure in the near wake of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Luhmann, J. G.; Russell, C. T.; Brace, L. H.; Knudsen, W. C.; Taylor, H. A.; Scarf, F. L.; Colburn, D. S.; Barnes, A.

    1982-01-01

    Ionospheric plasma density depletions or 'holes' are observed by the Pioneer Venus orbiter in association with radial magnetic fields in the near wake of Venus. This report presents examples of the collected observations of these unexpected features of the Venus nightside ionosphere obtained by the Langmuir probe, magnetometer, ion mass spectrometer, retarding potential analyzer, plasma analyzer, and electric field experiments. The connection between plasma density depletions and temperature changes, changes in ion composition, plasma wave emissions, and magnetic fields with a substantial radial component is illustrated. Mechanisms that may be responsible for the formation and maintenance of holes are suggested.

  11. Stirling Cooler Designed for Venus Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Mellott, Kenneth D.

    2004-01-01

    Venus having an average surface temperature of 460 degrees Celsius (about 860 degrees Fahrenheit) and an atmosphere 150 times denser than the Earth's atmosphere, designing a robot to merely survive on the surface to do planetary exploration is an extremely difficult task. This temperature is hundreds of degrees higher than the maximum operating temperature of currently existing microcontrollers, electronic devices, and circuit boards. To meet the challenge of Venus exploration, researchers at the NASA Glenn Research Center studied methods to keep a pressurized electronics package cooled, so that the operating temperature within the electronics enclosure would be cool enough for electronics to run, to allow a mission to operate on the surface of Venus for extended periods.

  12. 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.

  13. High-resolution gravity model of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reasenberg, R. D.; Goldberg, Z. M.

    1992-01-01

    The anomalous gravity field of Venus shows high correlation with surface features revealed by radar. We extract gravity models from the Doppler tracking data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter by means of a two-step process. In the first step, we solve the nonlinear spacecraft state estimation problem using a Kalman filter-smoother. The Kalman filter has been evaluated through simulations. This evaluation and some unusual features of the filter are discussed. In the second step, we perform a geophysical inversion using a linear Bayesian estimator. To allow an unbiased comparison between gravity and topography, we use a simulation technique to smooth and distort the radar topographic data so as to yield maps having the same characteristics as our gravity maps. The maps presented cover 2/3 of the surface of Venus and display the strong topography-gravity correlation previously reported. The topography-gravity scatter plots show two distinct trends.

  14. Origin of flux ropes in Venus' ionosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cole, Keith D.

    1994-01-01

    The joule dissipation inside flux ropes in Venus' ionosphere is so great that they must be formed near, and maintained at, the place where they are observed. Thus ropes are not formed by a Kelvin-Helmholtz instability of the ionopause. The hypothesis that ropes may be formed by the dynamo action of internal gravity waves in Venus' thermosphere (Luhmann and Elphic, 1985; Cole, 1993) is strengthened by discussion of a magnetic evolution equation which includes neutral air motion. However, the dynamo process would work only at altitudes at which v(sub in) is greater than or equal to omega(sub i). At altitudes or parts of a rope where v(sub in) is much less than omega(sub i), the process does not work. A solar wind dynamo is therefore examined to account for the ropes. Thereby a major new heat source for ions of the Venus ionosphere associated with the ropes is uncovered.

  15. Sapphire Viewports for a Venus Probe

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bates, Stephen

    2012-01-01

    A document discusses the creation of a viewport suitable for use on the surface of Venus. These viewports are rated for 500 C and 100 atm pressure with appropriate safety factors and reliability required for incorporation into a Venus Lander. Sapphire windows should easily withstand the chemical, pressure, and temperatures of the Venus surface. Novel fixture designs and seals appropriate to the environment are incorporated, as are materials compatible with exploration vessels. A test cell was fabricated, tested, and leak rate measured. The window features polish specification of the sides and corners, soft metal padding of the sapphire, and a metal C-ring seal. The system safety factor is greater than 2, and standard mechanical design theory was used to size the window, flange, and attachment bolts using available material property data. Maintenance involves simple cleaning of the window aperture surfaces. The only weakness of the system is its moderate rather than low leak rate for vacuum applications.

  16. An Orbit Plan toward AKATSUKI Venus Reencounter and Orbit Injection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kawakatsu, Yasuhiro; Campagnola, Stefano; Hirose, Chikako; Ishii, Nobuaki

    2012-01-01

    On December 7, 2010, AKATSUKI, the Japanese Venus explorer reached its destination and tried to inject itself into Venus orbit. However, due to a malfunction of the propulsion system, the maneuver was interrupted and AKATSUKI again escaped out from the Venus into an interplanetary orbit. Telemetry data from AKATSUKI suggests the possibility to perform orbit maneuvers to reencounter the Venus and retry Venus orbit injection. Reported in this paper is an orbit plan investigated under this situation. The latest results reflecting the maneuvers conducted in the autumn 2011 is introduced as well.

  17. Isostatic compensation of equatorial highlands on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kucinskas, Algis B.; Turcotte, Donald L.

    1994-01-01

    Spherical harmonic models for Venus' global topography and gravity incorporating Magellan data are used to test isostatic compensation models in five 30 deg x 30 deg regions representative of the main classes of equatorial highlands. The power spectral density for the harmonic models obeys a power-law scaling with spectral slope Beta approximately 2 (Brown noise) for the topography and Beta approximately 3 (Kaula's law) for the geoid, similar to what is observed for Earth. The Venus topography spectrum has lower amplitudes than Earth's which reflects the dominant lowland topography on Venus. Observed degree geoid to topography ratios (GTRs) on Venus are significantly smaller than degree GTRs for uncompensated topography, indicative of substantial compensation. Assuming a global Airy compensation, most of the topography is compensated at depths greater than 100 km, suggesting a thick lithosphere on Venus. For each region considered we obtain a regional degree of compensation C from a linear regression of Bouguer anomaly versus Bouguer gravity data. Geoid anomaly (N) versus topography variation (h) data for each sample were compared, in the least-squares sense, to theoretical correlations for Pratt, Airy, and thermal thinning isostasy models yielding regional GTR, zero-elevation crustal thickness (H), and zero elevation thermal lithosphere thickness (y(sub L(sub 0)), respectively. We find the regional compensation to be substantial (C approximately 52-80%), and the h, N data correlations in the chosen areas can be explained by isostasy models applicable on the Earth and involving variations in crustal thickness (Airy) and/or lithospheric (thermal thinning) thickness. However, a thick crust and lithosphere (y(sub L(sub 0)) approximately 300 km) must be assumed for Venus.

  18. Tidal constraints on the interior of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dumoulin, Caroline; Tobie, Gabriel; Verhoeven, Olivier; Rosenblatt, Pascal; Rambaux, Nicolas

    2016-10-01

    As a prospective study for a future exploration of Venus, we propose to systematically investigate the signature of the internal structure in the gravity field and the rotation state of Venus, through the determination of the moment of inertia and the tidal Love number.We test various mantle compositions, core size and density as well as temperature profiles representative of different scenarios for formation and evolution of Venus. The mantle density ρ and seismic vP and vS wavespeeds are computed in a consistent manner from given temperature and composition using the Perple X program. This method computes phase equilibria and uses the thermodynamics of mantle minerals developped by Stixrude and Lithgow-Bertelloni (2011).The viscoelastic deformation of the planet interior under the action of periodic tidal forces are computed following the method of Tobie et al. (2005).For a variety of interior models of Venus, the Love number, k2, and the moment of inertia factor are computed following the method described above. The objective is to determine the sensitivity of these synthetic results to the internal structure. These synthetic data are then used to infer the measurement accuracies required on the time-varying gravitational field and the rotation state (precession rate, nutation and length of day variations) to provide useful constraints on the internal structure.We show that a better determination of k2, together with an estimation of the moment of inertia, the radial displacement, and of the time lag, if possible, will refine our knowledge on the present-day interior of Venus (size of the core, mantle temperature, composition and viscosity). Inferring these quantities from a future ex- ploration mission will provide essential constraints on the formation and evolution scenarios of Venus.

  19. Applications of a Venus thermospheric circulation model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bougher, S. W.; Dickinson, R. E.; Ridley, E. C.; Roble, R. G.

    1986-01-01

    A variety of Pioneer Venus observations suggest a global scale, day-to-night Venus thermospheric circulation. Model studies of the dynamics and energetics of the Venus thermosphere are presented in order to address new driving, mixing and cooling mechanisms for an improved model simulation. The adopted approach was to reexamine the circulation by first using a previous two dimensional code to quantify those physical processes which can be inferred from the Pioneer Venus observations. Specifically, the model was used to perform sensitivity studies to determine the degree to which eddy cooling, eddy or wave drag, eddy diffusion and 15 micrometer radiational cooling are necessary to bring the model temperature and composition fields into agreement with observations. Three EUV heating cases were isolated for study. Global temperature and composition fields in good agreement with Pioneer data were obtained. Large scale horizontal winds 220 m/s were found to be consistent with the observed cold nightside temperatures and dayside bulges of O, CO and CO2. Observed dayside temperatures were obtained by using a 7 to 19% EUV heating efficiency profile. The enhanced 15 micrometer cooling needed for thermal balance is obtained using the best rate coefficient available for atomic O collisional excitation of CO2(0,1,0). Eddy conduction was not found to be a viable cooling mechanism due to the weakened global circulation. The strong 15 micrometer damping and low EUV efficiency imply a very weak dependence of the general circulation to solar cycle variability. The NCAR terrestrial thermospheric general circulation model was adapted for Venus inputs using the above two dimensional model parameters, to give a three dimensional benchmark for future Venus modelling work.

  20. Submillimeter mapping of mesospheric minor species on Venus with ALMA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Encrenaz, T.; Moreno, R.; Moullet, A.; Lellouch, E.; Fouchet, T.

    2015-08-01

    uniform H2O mixing ratio of 2.5±0.6 ppm (corresponding to a HDO mixing ratio of 0.165±0.040 ppm). We note that our spectrum is also compatible with a H2O mixing ratio of 1.5 ppm in the 80-90 km altitude range, and a mixing ratio of 3 ppm outside this range, as suggested by the photochemical model of Zhang et al. (2012, Icarus, vol. 217, pp. 714-739). Our results are in good general agreement with previous single dish submillimeter observations of Sandor and Clancy (2005, Icarus, vol. 177, pp. 129-143), Gurwell et al. (2007, Icarus, vol. 188, p. 288), and Sandor et al. (2010, Icarus, vol. 208, pp. 49-60; 2012, Icarus, vol. 217, pp. 839-844) and with SPICAV/Venus Express results of Fedorova et al. (2008, J. Geophys. Res., vol. 113, p. E00B25) and Belyaev et al. (2012).

  1. Galileo infrared imaging spectroscopy measurements at venus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Carlson, R.W.; Baines, K.H.; Encrenaz, Th.; Taylor, F.W.; Drossart, P.; Kamp, L.W.; Pollack, James B.; Lellouch, E.; Collard, A.D.; Calcutt, S.B.; Grinspoon, D.; Weissman, P.R.; Smythe, W.D.; Ocampo, A.C.; Danielson, G.E.; Fanale, F.P.; Johnson, T.V.; Kieffer, H.H.; Matson, D.L.; McCord, T.B.; Soderblom, L.A.

    1991-01-01

    During the 1990 Galileo Venus flyby, the Near Infrared Mapping Spectrometer investigated the night-side atmosphere of Venus in the spectral range 0.7 to 5.2 micrometers. Multispectral images at high spatial resolution indicate substantial cloud opacity variations in the lower cloud levels, centered at 50 kilometers altitude. Zonal and meridional winds were derived for this level and are consistent with motion of the upper branch of a Hadley cell. Northern and southern hemisphere clouds appear to be markedly different. Spectral profiles were used to derive lower atmosphere abundances of water vapor and other species.

  2. Emplacement Scenarios for Volcanic Domes on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glaze, Lori S.; Baloga, Steve M.; Stofan, Ellen R.

    2012-01-01

    One key to understanding the history of resurfacing on Venus is better constraints on the emplacement timescales for the range of volcanic features visible on the surface. A figure shows a Magellan radar image and topography for a putative lava dome on Venus. 175 such domes have been identified with diameters ranging from 19 - 94 km, and estimated thicknesses as great as 4 km. These domes are thought to be volcanic in origin and to have formed by the flow of viscous fluid (i.e., lava) on the surface.

  3. Venus Cloud Patterns (colorized and filtered)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This picture of Venus was taken by the Galileo spacecrafts Solid State Imaging System on February 14, 1990, at a range of almost 1.7 million miles from the planet. A highpass spatial filter has been applied in order to emphasize the smaller scale cloud features, and the rendition has been colorized to a bluish hue in order to emphasize the subtle contrasts in the cloud markings and to indicate that it was taken through a violet filter. The sulfuric acid clouds indicate considerable convective activity, in the equatorial regions of the planet to the left and downwind of the subsolar point (afternoon on Venus). They are analogous to 'fair weather clouds' on Earth. The filamentary dark features visible in the colorized image are here revealed to be composed of several dark nodules, like beads on a string, each about 60 miles across. The Galileo Project is managed for NASA's Office of Space Science and Applications by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory; its mission is to study Jupiter and its satellites and magnetosphere after multiple gravity assist flybys at Venus and Earth. These images of the Venus clouds were taken by Galileo's Solid State Imaging System February 13, 1990, at a range of about 1 million miles. The smallest detail visible is about 20 miles. The two right images show Venus in violet light, the top one at a time six hours later than the bottom one. They show the state of the clouds near the top of Venus's cloud deck. A right to left motion of the cloud features is evident and is consistent with westward winds of about 230 mph. The two left images show Venus in near infrared light, at the same times as the two right images. Sunlight penetrates through the clouds more deeply at the near infrared wavelengths, allowing a view near the bottom of the cloud deck. The westward motion of the clouds is slower (about 150 mph) at the lower altitude. The clouds are composed of sulfuric acid droplets and occupy a range of altitudes from 30 to 45 miles. The images have

  4. Are the clouds of Venus sulfuric acid.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Young, A. T.

    1973-01-01

    It is shown that strong aqueous sulfuric acid solutions have the right refractive index and freeze at Venusian cloud temperature, explain the dryness of the Venusian stratosphere, are consistent with some features of the Venusian IR spectrum, and do not absorb in highly reflecting areas of Venus. It is also indicated that such solutions should be produced by reactions between known atmospheric constituents and most sulfur-bearing rock at the Venusian surface temperature, and require only small amounts of sulfur consistent with its cosmic abundance and with the amounts of other volatile elements present in the atmosphere. It is believed therefore that the clouds of Venus consist of sulfuric acid solutions.

  5. Solar Flight on Mars and Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; LaMarre, Christopher; Colozza, Anthony

    2002-01-01

    Solar powered aircraft are of interest for exploring both Mars and Venus. The thin atmosphere of Mars presents a difficult environment for flying. It is clear that a new approach is needed. By making a totally solar airplane, we can eliminate many of the heavy components, and make an airplane that can fly without fuel. Using high efficiency solar cells, we can succeed with an airplane design that can fly for up to 6 hours in near-equatorial regions of Mars (4 hours of level flight, plus two hours of slow descent), and potentially fly for many days in the polar regions. By designing an airplane for a single day flight. In particular, this change means that we no longer have to cope with the weight of the energy storage system that made previous solar powered airplanes for Mars impractical). The new airplane concept is designed to fly only under the optimal conditions: near equatorial flight, at the subsolar point, near noon. We baseline an 8 kg airplane, with 2 kg margin. Science instruments will be selected with the primary criterion of low mass. Solar-powered aircraft are also quite interesting for the exploration of Venus. Venus provides several advantages for flying a solar-powered aircraft. At the top of the cloud level, the solar intensity is comparable to or greater than terrestrial solar intensities. The atmospheric pressure makes flight much easier than on planets such as Mars. The atmospheric pressure on Venus is presented. From an altitude of approximately 45 km (pressure = 2 bar), to approximately 60 km (pressure = 0.2 bar), terrestrial airplane experience can be easily applied to a Venus airplane design. At these flight altitudes, the temperature varies from 80 C at 45 km, decreasing to -35 C at 60 km. Also, the slow rotation of Venus allows an airplane to be designed for flight within continuous sunlight, eliminating the need for energy storage for nighttime flight. These factors make Venus a prime choice for a long-duration solar-powered aircraft

  6. The Tectonics and Evolution of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaula, William M.

    1997-01-01

    This shift corresponded to a focusing of research on Venus. Some work included comparison with other planets. Venus research is being continued. The research can be summarized under five headings: (1) Planet formation; (2) Thermal and Compositional Evolution; (3) Tectonic structures and processes; (4) Determination and interpretation of gravity; and (5) Analyses of Ishtar Terra. Thirty-four publications were produced. References to publications supporting the summary are by year and letter: e.g., (1990 c,d) for the emphasis on the terminal phases in formation studies.

  7. Venus: Mantle convection, hotspots, and tectonics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, R. J.

    1989-01-01

    The putative paradigm that planets of the same size and mass have the same tectonic style led to the adaptation of the mechanisms of terrestrial plate tectonics as the a priori model of the way Venus should behave. Data acquired over the last decade by Pioneer Venus, Venera, and ground-based radar have modified this view sharply and have illuminated the lack of detailed understanding of the plate tectonic mechanism. For reference, terrestrial mechanisms are briefly reviewed. Venusian lithospheric divergence, hotspot model, and horizontal deformation theories are proposed and examined.

  8. The color of the surface of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pieters, C. M.; Head, J. W.; Patterson, W.; Pratt, S.; Garvin, J.

    1986-01-01

    Multispectral images of the basaltic surface of Venus obtained by Venera 13 were processed to remove the effects of orange-colored incident radiation resulting from interactions with the thick Venusian atmosphere. At visible wavelengths the surface of Venus appears dark and without significant color. High-temperature laboratory reflectance spectra of basaltic materials indicate that these results are consistent with mineral assemblages bearing either ferric or ferrous iron. A high reflectance in the near-infrared region observed at neighboring Venera 9 and 10 sites, however, suggests that the basaltic surface material contains ferric minerals and thus may be relatively oxidized.

  9. Chemistry of the surface and lower atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fegley, B., Jr.; Treiman, A.

    1992-01-01

    A comprehensive overview of the chemical interactions between the atmosphere and surface of Venus is presented. Earth-based, earth-orbital, and spacecraft data on the composition of the atmosphere and surface of Venus are presented and applied to quantitative evaluations of the chemical interactions between carbon, hydrogen, sulfur, chlorine, fluorine, and nitrogen-containing gases and possible minerals on the Venus surface. The calculation results are used to predict stable minerals and mineral assemblages on the Venus surface to determine which, if any, atmospheric gases are buffered by mineral assemblages on the surface, and to critically review and assess prior work on atmosphere-surface chemistry on Venus. It is concluded that the CO2 pressure on Venus is comparable to the CO2 equilibrium partial pressure developed by the calcite + wollastonite + quartz assemblage at the mean Venus surface temperature of 740 K.

  10. Venus - Volcano With Massive Landslides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    This Magellan full-resolution mosaic which covers an area 143 by 146 kilometers (89 by 91 miles) is centered at 55 degrees north latitude, 266 degrees east longitude. The bright feature, slightly south of center is interpreted to be a volcano, 15-20 kilometers (9.3 to 12.4 miles) in diameter with a large apron of blocky debris to its right and some smaller aprons to its left. A preferred explanation is that several massive catastrophic landslides dropped down steep slopes and were carried by their momentum out into the smooth, dark lava plains. At the base of the east-facing or largest scallop on the volcano is what appears to be a large block of coherent rock, 8 to 10 kilometers (5 to 6 miles) in length. The similar margin of both the scallop and block and the shape in general is typical of terrestrial slumped blocks (masses of rock which slide and rotate down a slope instead of breaking apart and tumbling). The bright lobe to the south of the volcano may either be a lava flow or finer debris from other landslides. This volcanic feature, characterized by its scalloped flanks is part of a class of volcanoes called scalloped or collapsed domes of which there are more than 80 on Venus. Based on the chute-like shapes of the scallops and the existence of a spectrum of intermediate to well defined examples, it is hypothesized that all of the scallops are remnants of landslides even though the landslide debris is often not visible. Possible explanations for the missing debris are that it may have been covered by lava flows, the debris may have weathered or that the radar may not be recognizing it because the individual blocks are too small

  11. Astrobiology: The Case for Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2003-01-01

    The scientific discipline of astrobiology addresses one of the most fundamental unanswered questions of science: are we alone? Is there life elsewhere in the universe, or is life unique to Earth? The field of astrobiology includes the study of the chemical precursors for life in the solar system; it also includes the search for both presently existing life and fossil signs of previously existing life elsewhere in our own solar system, as well as the search for life outside the solar system. Two of the promising environments within the solar system being currently considered are the surface of the planet Mars, and the hypothesized oceans underneath the ice covering the moon Europa. Both of these environments differ in several key ways from the environments where life is found on Earth; the Mars environment in most places too cold and at too low pressure for liquid water to be stable, and the sub-ice environment of Europa lacking an abundance of free energy in the form of sunlight. The only place in the solar system where we know that life exists today is the Earth. To look for life elsewhere in the solar system, one promising search strategy would be to find and study the environment in the solar system with conditions that are most similar to the environmental conditions where life thrives on the Earth. Specifically, we would like to study a location in the solar system with atmospheric pressure near one bar; temperature in the range where water is liquid, 0 to 100 C; abundant solar energy; and with the primary materials required for life, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrogen, present. Other than the surface of the Earth, the only other place where these conditions exist is the atmosphere of Venus, at an altitude of about fifty kilometers above the surface.

  12. Venus Atmospheric Maneuverable Platform (VAMP) - A Low Cost Venus Exploration Concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, G.; Polidan, R. S.; Ross, F.

    2015-12-01

    The Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems and L-Garde team has been developing an innovative mission concept: a long-lived, maneuverable platform to explore the Venus upper atmosphere. This capability is an implementation of our Lifting Entry Atmospheric Flight (LEAF) system concept, and the Venus implementation is called the Venus Atmospheric Maneuverable Platform (VAMP). The VAMP concept utilizes an ultra-low ballistic coefficient (< 50 Pa), semi-buoyant aircraft that deploys prior to entering the Venus atmosphere, enters without an aeroshell, and provides a long-lived (months to a year) maneuverable vehicle capable of carrying science instruments to explore the Venus upper atmosphere. In this presentation we provide an update on the air vehicle design and a low cost pathfinder mission concept that can be implemented in the near-term. The presentation also provides an overview of our plans for future trade studies, analyses, and prototyping to advance and refine the concept. We will discuss the air vehicle's entry concepts of operations (CONOPs) and atmospheric science operations. We will present a strawman concept of a VAMP pathfinder, including ballistic coefficient, planform area, percent buoyancy, wing span, vehicle mass, power supply, propulsion, materials considerations, structural elements, and instruments accommodation. In this context, we will discuss the following key factors impacting the design and performance of VAMP: Entry into the Venus atmosphere, including descent profile, heating rate, total heat load, stagnation, and acreage temperatures Impact of maximum altitude on air vehicle design and entry heating Candidate thermal protection system (TPS) requirements We will discuss the interdependencies of the above factors and the manner in which the VAMP pathfinder concept'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

  13. Impact-generated winds on Venus: Causes and effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schultz, Pater H.

    1992-01-01

    The pressure of the dense atmosphere of Venus significantly changes the appearance of ejecta deposits relative to craters on the Moon and Mercury. Conversely, specific styles and sequences of ejecta emplacement can be inferred to represent different intensities of atmospheric response winds acting over different timescales. Three characteristic timescales can be inferred from the geologic record: surface scouring and impactor-controlled (angle and direction) initiation of the long fluidized run-out flows; nonballistic emplacement of inner, radar-bright ejecta facies and radar-dark outer facies; and very late reworking of surface materials. These three timescales roughly correspond to processes observed in laboratory experiments that can be scaled to conditions on Venus (with appropriate assumptions): coupling between the atmosphere and earlytime vapor/melt (target and impactor) that produces an intense shock that subsequently evolves into blast/response winds; less energetic dynamic response of the atmosphere to the outward-moving ballistic ejecta curtain that generates nonthermal turbulent eddies; and late recovery of the atmosphere to impact-generated thermal and pressure gradients expressed as low-energy but long-lived winds. These different timescales and processes can be viewed as the atmosphere equivalent of shock melting, material motion, and far-field seismic response in the target. The three processes (early Processes, Atmospheric Processes, and Late Recovery Winds) are discussed at length.

  14. Solar wind interactions with Venus and Mars: a comparative study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, H.; Russell, C. T.; Zhang, T.

    2013-05-01

    Due to the lack of a significant global magnetic field, the ionospheres of Venus and Mars stand off the solar wind and form a bow shock close to the planet, an induced magnetosphere, and an ionopause. Depending on the relative strength of the thermal pressure in the ionosphere and the dynamic pressure in the solar wind, the lower ionosphere can be in unmagnetized or magnetized states when the interplanetary fields are shielded above the ionopause or penetrate below. Magnetic flux ropes, which are bundles of twisted field lines, form in the lower ionosphere as small structures with diameters of a few kilometers or large structures with diameters of hundreds of kilometers. The data from Venus Express and Mars Global Surveyor missions are investigated to understand the formation of these structures and their effects in these ionospheres. On the topside of the ionosphere, particles originated from the planet are accelerated by the electro-magnetic force in the solar wind and carried away in a process called ion pickup. The pickup process and particle escape rate are examined using observations of ion cyclotron waves in the magnetic field data of these missions.

  15. Intermittency of solar system plasma turbulence near Venus and Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teodorescu, Eliza; Echim, Marius; Chang, Tom

    2016-04-01

    We analyze magnetic field data from Venus Express (VEX) and CLUSTER to investigate the turbulent properties of the solar wind and the Earth's and Venus' magnetosheaths. A systematic study of the PDFs (Probability Distribution Functions) of the measured magnetic fluctuations and their fourth order moments (kurtosis) reveals numerous intermittent time series. The presence of intermittency is marked by non-Gaussian PDFs with heavy wings and a scale dependent kurtosis. Higher order analyses on the scale dependence of several moment orders of the PDFs, the structure functions, along with the scaling of the kurtosis allow for a selection of scales that pertain to different scaling regimes, governed by different physics. On such sub-ranges of scales we investigate the fractal structure of fluctuations through the Rank Ordered Multifractal Analysis - ROMA (Chang and Wu, 2008). ROMA is applied to a selection of intermittent magnetic field time series in the solar wind and planetary magnetosheaths and helps to quantify the turbulence properties through the estimation of a spectrum of local Hurst exponents. 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.

  16. Facial nerve palsy aboard a commercial aircraft.

    PubMed

    Grossman, Alon; Ulanovski, David; Barenboim, Erez; Azaria, Bella; Goldstein, Liav

    2004-12-01

    Facial baroparesis is facial nerve palsy secondary to barotrauma. This phenomenon is frequently seen in divers, but is under-reported there and has rarely been described in aviators or passengers aboard commercial aircraft. We describe a 24-yr-old healthy aviator who experienced an episode of facial nerve palsy during ascent while traveling as a passenger aboard a commercial flight. The probable pathogenesis of this phenomenon in this case is described.

  17. Retrieval of Venus' clouds and hazes properties with polarimetric data from SPICAV/VEx

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, L.; Marcq, E.; Bott, N.; Montmessin, F.; Fedorova, A.; Stam, D.; Bertaux, J.-L.; Korablev, O.

    2015-10-01

    The study of Venus' cloud layers is important in order to understand the structure, radiative balance and dynamics of the Venusian atmosphere. Polarization measurements have given important constraints for the determination of the constituents of the clouds and haze. From ground based observations, Hansen and Hovenier[3], using a radiative transfer model including polarization, found that the main cloud layers between 50 and 70 km consist of r˜1μm radius spherical droplets of a H 2SO4-H2O solution. In the early 1980s, Kawabata[4] used the polarization data from the OCPP instrument on the spacecraft Pioneer Venus to constrain the properties of the overlying haze. They found that the haze layer is composed of smaller particles with r˜0.25μm and similar refractive indices. Our work reproduces the method used by Hansen and Kawabata[3, 4]. We applied a radiative transfer model with polarization on the polarization data of the SPICAV-IR instrument on-board ESA's Venus Express. Our aim is to better constrain haze and cloud particles at the top of Venus's clouds, as well as their spatial and temporal variability.

  18. Monitoring of Venus transgenic cell migration during pregnancy in non-transgenic rabbits.

    PubMed

    Lipták, N; Hoffmann, O I; Kerekes, A; Iski, G; Ernszt, D; Kvell, K; Hiripi, L; Bősze, Z

    2017-04-01

    Cell transfer between mother and fetus were demonstrated previously in several species which possess haemochorial placenta (e.g. in humans, mice, rats, etc.). Here we report the assessment of fetal and maternal microchimerism in non-transgenic (non-TG) New Zealand white rabbits which were pregnant with transgenic (TG) fetuses and in non-TG newborns of TG does. The TG construct, including the Venus fluorophore cDNA driven by a ubiquitous cytomegalovirus enhancer, chicken ß-actin promoter (CAGGS), was previously integrated into the rabbit genome by Sleeping Beauty transposon system. Three different methods [fluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (QPCR)] were employed to search for TG cells and gene products in blood and other tissues of non-TG rabbits. Venus positive peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were not detected in the blood of non-TG littermates or non-TG does by flow cytometry. Tissue samples (liver, kidney, skeletal and heart muscle) also proved to be Venus negative examined with fluorescence microscopy, while histology sections and PBMCs of TG rabbits showed robust Venus protein expression. In case of genomic DNA (gDNA) sourced from tissue samples of non-TG rabbits, CAGGS promoter-specific fragments could not be amplified by QPCR. Our data showed the lack of detectable cell transfer between TG and non-TG rabbits during gestation.

  19. Acoustic properties in the low and middle atmospheres of Mars and Venus.

    PubMed

    Petculescu, Andi

    2016-08-01

    Generic predictions for acoustic dispersion and absorption in the atmospheres of Mars and Venus are presented. For Mars, Pathfinder and Mars Express ambient data and averaged thermophysical parameters are used as inputs to a preliminary model based on the continuum approximation for Mars' thin atmosphere-the need for Boltzmann-based treatment is discussed in the context of Knudsen numbers. Strong absorption constrains acoustic sensing within the Martian planetary boundary layer. For the dense atmosphere of Venus, the van der Waals equation of state is used. The thermophysical and transport parameters were interpolated at the ambient conditions. Acoustic sensing is discussed at 50 km above Venus' surface, a level where aerostats (e.g., European Space Agency's EVE) and manned airships (e.g., NASA's HAVOC) may be deployed in the future. The salient atmospheric characteristics are described in terms of temperature, pressure, and convective stability profiles, followed by wavenumber predictions, and discussions of low- and high-frequency sensing applications. At low frequencies, emphasis is placed on infrasound. A simple generation mechanism by Martian dust devils is presented, yielding fundamental frequencies between 0.1 and 10 Hz. High-frequency sensing is exemplified by ultrasonic anemometry. Of the two environments, Venus is notably more dispersive in the ultrasonic range.

  20. Different types of small volcanos on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slyuta, E. N.; Shalimov, I. V.; Nikishin, A. M.

    1992-01-01

    One of the studies of volcanic activity on Venus is the comparison of that with the analogous volcanic activity on Earth. The preliminary report of such a comparison and description of a small cluster of small venusian volcanos is represented in detail in this paper.

  1. Solar Airplane Concept Developed for Venus Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2004-01-01

    An airplane is the ideal vehicle for gathering atmospheric data over a wide range of locations and altitudes, while having the freedom to maneuver to regions of scientific interest. Solar energy is available in abundance on Venus. Venus has an exoatmospheric solar flux of 2600 W/m2, compared with Earth's 1370 W/m2. The solar intensity is 20 to 50 percent of the exoatmospheric intensity at the bottom of the cloud layer, and it increases to nearly 95 percent of the exoatmospheric intensity at 65 km. At these altitudes, the temperature of the atmosphere is moderate, in the range of 0 to 100 degrees Celsius, depending on the altitude. A Venus exploration aircraft, sized to fit in a small aeroshell for a "Discovery" class scientific mission, has been designed and analyzed at the NASA Glenn Research Center. For an exploratory aircraft to remain continually illuminated by sunlight, it would have to be capable of sustained flight at or above the wind speed, about 95 m/sec at the cloud-top level. The analysis concluded that, at typical flight altitudes above the cloud layer (65 to 75 km above the surface), a small aircraft powered by solar energy could fly continuously in the atmosphere of Venus. At this altitude, the atmospheric pressure is similar to pressure at terrestrial flight altitudes.

  2. Collection of Magellan Venus radar mapping results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1991-03-01

    Through computer animation several geological features of Venus are presented in this video. The Sif Mons, a 1.2 mile high volcano and the Gula Mons, a 1.8 mile high volcano are shown. Also, radar images of a rift valley, several impact craters, and a corona can be seen. The video ends with a northeast view of Eistla Regio.

  3. Sulfuric acid in the Venus clouds.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sill, G. T.

    1972-01-01

    The extremely dry nature of the Venus upper atmosphere appears to demand the presence of an efficient desiccating agent as the chief constituent of the clouds of Venus. On the basis of polarization measures it is to be expected that this substance is present as spherical droplets, 1 to 2 microns in diameter, with a refractive index n of 1.46 plus or minus 0.02 at 3500A in the observed region of the atmosphere, with T about equal to 235 K. This substance must have ultraviolet, visible, and infrared reflection properties not inconsistent with the observed spectrum of Venus. Sulfuric acid, of about 86% by weight composition, roughly fulfills the first of these properties. The visible and ultraviolet transmission features of a thin layer of elemental bromine and hydrobromic acid dissolved in sulfuric acid somewhat resemble the Venus spectrum, up to 14 microns. The chemical process postulated for forming sulfuric acid involves the oxidation of sulfur and its compounds to sulfuric acid through the agency of elemental bromine produced by the photolytic decomposition of hydrogen bromide.

  4. Sulfuric Acid in the Venus Clouds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sill, G. T.

    1972-01-01

    The visible and ultraviolet transmission features of a thin layer of elemental bromine and hydrobromic acid dissolved in sulfuric acid somewhat resemble the Venus spectrum, up to 14 microns. The chemical process postulated for forming sulfuric acid involves the oxidation of sulfur and its compounds to sulfuric acid through the agency of elemental bromine, produced by the photolytic decomposition of hydrogen bromide.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Electrical discharges in the atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ksanfomaliti, L. V.; Vasilchikov, N. M.; Ganpantserova, O. F.; Petrova, Y. V.; Suvorov, A. P.; Filippov, G. F.; Yablonskaya, O. V.; Yabrova, L. V.

    1979-01-01

    Data received from Venera 11 and 12 experiments involving the electrical activity of the atmosphere of Venus show that the electrical discharges occur in the cloud layer. Their energy is roughly the same as in terrestrial lightning, but with a pulse repetition frequency of the discharges which is much greater.

  8. Solar diameter with 2012 Venus Transit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigismondi, C.

    2012-06-01

    The role of Venus and Mercury transits is crucial to know the past history of the solar diameter. Through the W parameter, the logarithmic derivative of the radius with respect to the luminosity, the past values of the solar luminosity can be recovered. The black drop phenomenon affects the evaluation of the instants of internal and external contacts between the planetary disk and the solar limb. With these observed instants compared with the ephemerides the value of the solar diameter is recovered. The black drop and seeing effects are overcome with two fitting circles, to Venus and to the Sun, drawn in the undistorted part of the image. The corrections of ephemerides due to the atmospheric refraction will also be taken into account. The forthcoming transit of Venus will allow an accuracy on the diameter of the Sun better than 0.01 arcsec, with good images of the ingress and of the egress taken each second. Chinese solar observatories are in the optimal conditions to obtain valuable data for the measurement of the solar diameter with the Venus transit of 5/6 June 2012 with an unprecedented accuracy, and with absolute calibration given by the ephemerides.

  9. Measuring Solar Diameter with 2012 Venus Transits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigismondi, Costantino

    The role of Venus and Mercury transits is crucial to know the past history of the solar diameter. Through the W parameter, the logarithmic derivative of the radius with respect to the luminosity, the past values of the solar luminosity can be recovered. The black drop phenomenon affects the evaluation of the instants of internal and external contacts between the planetary disk and the solar limb. With these observed instants compared with the ephemerides the value of the solar diameter is recovered. The black drop and seeing effects are overcome with two fitting circles, to Venus and to the Sun, drawn in the undistorted part of the image. The corrections of ephemerides due to the atmospheric refraction will also be taken into account. The forthcoming transit of Venus will allow an accuracy on the diameter of the Sun better than 0.01 arcsec, with good images of the ingress and of the egress taken each second. Chinese solar observatories are in the optimal conditions to obtain valuable data for the measurement of the solar diameter with the Venus transit of 5/6 June 2012 with an unprecedented accuracy, and with absolute calibration given by the ephemerides.

  10. Results On Atmospheric Dynamics At The Venus Cloud Tops From Digital And Manual Wind Tracking In Vmc Images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moissl, Richard; Limaye, S. S.; Khatuntsev, I.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Titov, D. V.

    2008-09-01

    The upper clouds of Venus have been studied extensively from ground and space borne observations in the past, especially in the ultraviolet part of the spectrum. To date we know that the atmosphere of Venus is in a constant state of super-rotation, reaching speeds around 100 m/s at the cloud tops and that the cloud markings in the UV are caused by SO2 and another, yet unknown, UV absorber. This presentation deals with the results on the atmospheric dynamics at the cloud top region ( 65-70 km above the surface) of Venus, derived from manual and automated cloud tracking in the UV channel (wavelength= 365 +/- 10 nm) of the Venus Monitoring Camera Experiment (VMC) on board the Venus Express mission. With the VMC it became possible to investigate the global dynamics with a relatively high resolution in space and time on a long term basis. In addition to the confirmation of results from previous studies on the atmospheric dynamics, the observations of the southern hemisphere by the VMC allowed for detailed studies of the strong cloud-level super-rotation phenomenon on Venus and its variability on different timescales ranging from hours to several months. Information on the latitudinal wind speed profiles could be obtained for latitudes up to 85 degrees south, extending the results from previous studies by almost 20 degrees. Global wave modes which are believed to play a key role for understanding energy transport phenomena in the venusian atmosphere, such as a 4-day Kelvin wave mode in low latitudes and diurnal and semidiurnal solar thermal tides have been detected in the analysis cloud tracked wind fields of the southern hemisphere of Venus.

  11. The Age of the Surface of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahnle, K. J.; McKinnon, William B.; Young, Richard E. (Technical Monitor)

    1997-01-01

    Impact craters on Venus appear to be uniformly and randomly scattered over a once, but no longer, geologically active planet. To first approximation, the planet shows a single surface of a single age. Here we use Monte Carlo cratering simulations to estimate the age of the surface of Venus. The simulations are based on the present populations of Earth-approaching asteroids, Jupiter-family, Halley-family, and long period comets; they use standard Schmidt-Housen crater scalings in the gravity regime; and they describe interaction with the atmosphere using a semi-analytic 'pancake' model that is calibrated to detailed numerical simulations of impactors striking Venus. The lunar and terrestrial cratering records are also simulated. Both of these records suffer from poor statistics. The Moon has few young large craters and fewer still whose ages are known, and the record is biased because small craters tend to look old and large craters tend to look young. The craters of the Earth provide the only reliable ages, but these craters are few, eroded, of uncertain diameter, and statistically incomplete. Together the three cratering records can be inverted to constrain the flux of impacting bodies, crater diameters given impact parameters, and the calibration of atmospheric interactions. The surface age of Venus that results is relatively young. Alternatively, we can use our best estimates for these three input parameters to derive a best estimate for the age of the surface of Venus. Our tentative conclusions are that comets are unimportant, that the lunar and terrestrial crater records are both subject to strong biases, that there is no strong evidence for an increasing cratering flux in recent years, and that that the nominal age of the surface of Venus is about 600 Ma, although the uncertainty is about a factor of two. The chief difference between our estimate and earlier, somewhat younger estimates is that we find that the venusian atmosphere is less permeable to

  12. The solar wind interaction with Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Luthmann, J. G.

    1992-01-01

    The Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) mission has played a key role in establishing the nature of the solar wind interaction with Venus. Although earlier probes had determined that Venus presented an obstacle much smaller than the size of earth's magnetosphere to the solar wind, they did not carry out in situ measurements pertaining to solar wind interaction studies at low enough altitudes to determine why. They also did not provide datasets of sufficient duration to study the variability of the interaction of both short (one day) and long (solar cycle) timescales. The first 600 of the nearly 5000 orbits of PVO magnetometer data have been used to determine a very low upper limit on the intrinsic dipolar magnetic moment of Venus. The consequence of that low magnetic moment is that the solar wind interacts directly with the upper atmosphere and ionosphere. Relative to a dipolar field obstacle, the ionospheric obstacle is rather incompressible. A bow shock is observed to stand in front of the nearly Venus-sized ionospheric obstacle at a comparatively steady subsolar altitude of approximately 1.5 R(v) (Venus radii). This shock decelerates the supersonic solar wind plasma so that it can flow around the obstacle. It was found to change its average position in the terminator plane from about 2.4 R(v) to 2.1 R(v) as the solar cycle progressed from the 1978 orbit insertion near solar maximum through the 1986-87 solar minimum, and back again during the latest solar activity increase. Between the bow shock and the ionosphere proper, the slowed solar wind plasma flow diverges near the subsolar point and makes its way across the terminator where it reaccelerates and continues anti-Sunward. The solar wind magnetic field, which is in effect frozen into the flowing plasma, is distorted in this 'magnetosheath' region so that it appears to hang up or drape over the dayside ionosphere before it slips around with the flow. These features of the solar wind interaction are also seen when the

  13. Lessons From the Pioneer Venus Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dorfman, Steven D.

    2005-01-01

    We began the Pioneer Venus contract in late 1974 with a planned launch of the Orbiter in May 1978 and the Multiprobe in August 1978. Because we had four years, we thought there was plenty of time. As it turned out, we barely made the launch dates. The Orbiter was relatively straightforward, compared to the Multiprobe Bus and Probes that had to survive descent through the harsh Venusian atmosphere. To help overcome our many Multiprobe problems we formed a strong global team. The GE reentry team in Philadelphia, experienced in designing vehicles to enter the earth s atmosphere, was assigned the responsibility for the Probe entry system, including protective heat shielding and parachute design to extract the scienceladen Large Probe pressure vessel and control its descent through the Venusian clouds. Since the Probes had to remain stable as they descended through the Venus atmosphere, we used the aerodynamic expertise at the Hughes Missile Division, NASA s Ames Research Center and the Langley Research Center. Since the pressure at the surface of Venus was equivalent to an ocean depth of 3300 feet, we went to the Navy s David Taylor Research Center for their deepsea expertise. To test the pressure vessel at the high pressure and temperatures anticipated at Venus we went to the only facility capable of simulating the Venus surface environment, the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas. We had dozens of subcontractors all over the world. As we developed our design, we began an extensive program to validate the ability of our Probe hardware to withstand the Venus environment. During this testing, we encountered numerous problems, mostly associated with adapting earth-based hardware to operate in the anticipated Venus environment. For example, the Large Probe pressure vessel imploded with a very loud bang the first time we tested its ability to withstand the high pressure and temperature on the Venusian surface. We had to go back and redesign, increasing the

  14. A tectonic resurfacing model for Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solomon, Sean C.

    1993-01-01

    Two remarkable aspects of the population of impact craters on Venus are that craters at all sizes are indistinguishable from a random population and that the vast majority of craters have not been significantly modified by tectonic strain or by volcanic flows external to the crater rim, despite evidence from Magellan images that volcanic and tectonic features are widespread on Venus. One interpretation of these observations is that most of the surface dates from the end of a catastrophic global resurfacing event that ceased about 500 My ago, and that the small fraction of craters volcanically embayed or modified by deformation indicates that volcanic and tectonic activity subsequent to that time has been at much lower levels. An alternative model, in which resurfacing occurs episodically in patches a few hundred kilometers in extent and there is a wider spectrum of surface ages, also appears to be consistent with the characteristics of impact craters on Venus. A number of potential mechanisms for catastrophic resurfacing of Venus have been proposed, ranging from geologically sudden convective destabilization of the global lithosphere to strongly time-dependent heat flux and melt generation in the underlying mantle. In most of these geophysical models, resurfacing occurs implicitly or explicitly by volcanism. We explore the hypothesis that, at least in the geologically recent history of Venus, the primary resurfacing mechanism has been tectonic deformation rather than volcanism. We show how such a hypothesis provides at least as good an explanation of a wide range of observations as do volcanic resurfacing models. Finally, we explore the implications of tectonic resurfacing hypothesis for the controversy over the recent resurfacing history of the planet.

  15. Aeolian Processes and Features on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Bender, Kelly C.; Saunders, Stephen; Schubert, Gerald; Weitz, Catherine M.

    1997-01-01

    Aeolian features on Venus include dune fields, eroded hills (yardangs), wind streaks, (miniature dunes of 10 to 30 cm wavelength). Although and possibly microdunes (in repetitive imaging by Magellan did show changes in the appearance of the surface, these changes are attributed to radar artifacts as a consequence of look direction rather than to physical changes of the surface. Nonetheless, measurements of wind speeds near the surface of Venus and wind tunnel simulations suggest that aeolian processes could be currently active on Venus. Study of radar images of terrestrial analogs shows that radar wavelength, polarization, and viewing geometry, including look direction and incidence angle, all influence the detection of dunes, yardangs, and wind streaks. For best detection, dune crests and yardangs should be oriented perpendicular to look direction. Longer wavelength systems can penetrate sand sheets a meter or more thick, rendering them invisible, especially in arid regions. For wind streaks to be visible, there must be a contrast in surface properties between the streak and the background on which it occurs. Nonetheless, more than 6000 aeolian features have been found on Magellan images of Venus, the most common of which are various wind streaks. Mapping wind streak orientations enables near-surface wind patterns to be inferred for the time of their formation. Type P streaks are associated with parabolic ejecta crater deposits and are considered to have formed in association with the impact event. Most Type P streaks are oriented westward, indicative of the upper altitude superrotation winds of Venus. Non Type P streaks have occurrences and orientations consistent with Hadley circulation. Some streaks in the southern hemisphere are oriented to the northeast, suggesting a Coriolis effect.

  16. Protecting Venus from Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McKinnon, William B.; Zahnle, K. J.; Cuzzi, Jeffrey (Technical Monitor)

    1996-01-01

    It is well accepted that the dense, thick atmosphere of Venus prevents most small cosmic bodies from reaching the surface and forming craters. We have examined this atmospheric intervention in detail, incorporating the lessons learned from the extensive modeling of impactor deceleration and flattening motivated by the SL-9 impacts with Jupiter. We employ a "pancake" model, which best matches detailed code simulations of atmospheric energy deposition, and Schmidt-Holsapple crater scaling modified for complex (flattened) craters. We adopt the distributions of Venus-crossing asteroids and comets determined by E.M. Shoemaker and co-workers, as well as generalizations of these distributions. Our nominal simulation of the venusian crater record is shown below, calibrated to the total number of venusian craters (940). As nearly all craters on Venus are well-preserved and relatively uniformly distributed, such simulations constrain the age of the surface. The fit is reasonable, with a nominal crater retention age of approx. 700 Ma. The fit at the large-crater end is improved if the number of large asteroids is increased, which Shoemaker argues is in fact more representative of the long-term (over several 100 Ma) average, and if Halley-family comets are included. The ages we obtain under a variety of modeling choices that produce good fits (including using Shoemaker's preferred crater scaling) are approx. 700-900 Ma, substantially greater than the most widely cited age estimate in the literature (-300 Ma). The key difference is that we find very large depletions in the production of 20-30-km craters (see figure) compared with previous estimates, the size range at which atmospheric effects are often calibrated or assumed nearly negligible. As venusian global resurfacing recedes deeper into history, the likelihood that Venus is resting between bouts of activity diminishes. Venus, like Mars, may instead be dying or dead.

  17. Robotic Exploration of the Surface and Atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2004-01-01

    Venus, the "greenhouse planet", is a scientifically fascinating place. In many ways it can be considered "Earth's evil twin." A huge number of important scientific questions remain to be answered: 1) Before the runaway greenhouse effect, was early Venus temperate? 2) Did Venus once have an ocean? 3) What causes the geological resurfacing of the planet? 4) Is Venus still geologically active? 5) What is the "snow" on Venus mountaintops? 6) Can we learn about Earth's climate from Venus? 7) Is the atmosphere of Venus suitable for life? To address these and other scientific questions, a robotic mission to study the surface and atmosphere of Venus has been designed. The mission includes both surface robots, designed with an operational lifetime of 90 days on the surface of Venus, and also solar-powered airplanes to probe the middle atmosphere. At 450 Celsius, and with 90 atmospheres of pressure of carbon-dioxide atmosphere, the surface of Venus is a hostile place for operation of a probe. This paper will present the mission design, discuss the technology options for materials, power systems, electronics, and instruments, and present a short summary of the mission.

  18. Ovarian Tumor Cells Studied Aboard the International Space Station (ISS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    In August 2001, principal investigator Jeanne Becker sent human ovarian tumor cells to the International Space Station (ISS) aboard the STS-105 mission. The tumor cells were cultured in microgravity for a 14 day growth period and were analyzed for changes in the rate of cell growth and synthesis of associated proteins. In addition, they were evaluated for the expression of several proteins that are the products of oncogenes, which cause the transformation of normal cells into cancer cells. This photo, which was taken by astronaut Frank Culbertson who conducted the experiment for Dr. Becker, shows two cell culture bags containing LN1 ovarian carcinoma cell cultures.

  19. Geophysical Research Letters. Selected Papers on Pioneer Venus Orbiter: Entry Phase. Volume 20

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    Contents include the following papers which are comprised of subject matter related to the The Pioneer Venus Orbiter's Entry Phase: The Pioneer Venus entry phase; solar cycle variations of electron density and temperature in the Venusian nightside ionosphere; the magnetic state of the lower ionosphere during Pioneer Venus entry phase; the nightside ionosphere of Venus under varying levels of solar EUV flux; observation of the nightside Venus ionosphere; final encounter of the Pioneer Venus orbiter ion mass spectrometer; ion measurement during Pioneer Venus reentry; implications for solar cycle variation of ion composition and dynamics; evidence for day-to-night ion transport at low solar activity in the Venus pre-dawn ionosphere; model calculations of the dayside ionosphere of Venus at solar minimum; natural composition measurements by the Pioneer Venus neutral mass spectrometer during orbiter reentry; the Venus atmospheric response to solar cycle variations; and plasma waves observed at low altitudes in the tenuous Venus nightside ionosphere.

  20. Variability of the Venus condensational clouds from analysis of VIRTIS-M-IR observations of the near-infrared spectral windows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGouldrick, Kevin; Tsang, Constantine C. C.

    2015-11-01

    The Medium Resolution, Infrared wavelength channel of the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS-M-IR) on the Venus Express spacecraft observed the atmosphere and surface of Venus for 921 orbits following orbit insertion in April 2006 until the failure of the cooling unit in October 2008. The clouds of Venus were long thought to be a uniform sort of perpetual stratocumulus, but near infrared observations by fly-by spacecraft such as Galileo (Near Infrared Mapping Spectrometer) and Cassini (Visible and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer), as well as ground-based observations, indicated a great deal of temporal and spatial inhomogeneity. The nearly three-year lifetime of the VIRTIS-M-IR instrument on Venus Express presents an unprecedented opportunity to quantify these spatial and temporal variations of the Venus clouds. Here, we present the results of an initial quantification of the overall tendencies of the Venus clouds, as measured by variations in the near infrared spectral windows located between wavelengths of 1.0 µm and 2.6 µm. In a companion submission, we also investigate the variations of carbon monoxide and other trace species quantifiable in these data (Tsang and McGouldrick 2015). This work is supported by the Planetary Mission Data Analysis Program, Grant Number NNX14AP94G.

  1. Ionospheric magnetic fields and currents at Mars and Venus. Perspectives from MEX and VEX observations.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubinin, E.; Fraenz, M.; Zhang, T.-L.; Wei, Y.; Woch, J.; Fedorov, A.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.; Duru, F.

    2012-09-01

    Mars Express and Venus Express spacecrafts have provided us a wealth of in-situ observations of characteristics of induced magnetospheres of Mars and Venus at low altitudes during solar minimum conditions. At such conditions large-scale magnetic fields are observed deeply in the ionospheres (magnetized ionospheres). The observations again raise a long-standing question about the origin of these fields. The problem is intimately related to issue of electric current system and their closure. Analysis of ASPERA-3, ASPERA-4, MARSIS and MAG data reveals a lot of features which require a more sophisticated view at the origin and topology of the ionospheric magnetic fields. Differing perspectives at this problem are widely discussed.

  2. Ambipolar escape from Venus, Mars and Titan, and negative ions at Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coates, Andrew

    2016-07-01

    Ionospheric photoelectrons are a natural product of the photo-ionisation of planetary atmospheres. Their energy spectrum is distinctive and depends on the solar spectrum in the EUV and X-ray region. On production, the energetic electrons move along the magnetic field (open or draped), setting up an ambipolar electric field which can extract ions. This provides an escape mechanism similar to Earth's 'polar wind'. As these objects are unmagnetised, this produces an extended escape mechanism over the whole sunlit ionosphere. Here, we review recent measurements of photoelectrons far from the parent objects at Venus, Mars and Titan, from Venus Express, Mars Express, Maven and Cassini, and discuss similarities and related escape rates. We also review the pioneering observations of the remarkably heavy negative ions discovered in Titan's ionosphere.

  3. Study of Venus cloud layers with polarimetric data from SPICAV/VEx

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-05-01

    The study of Venus's cloud layers is important in order to understand the structure, radiative balance and dynamics of the Venusian atmosphere. The main cloud layers between 50 and 70km are thought to consist in ~ 1 μm radius droplets of a H2SO4-H2O solution. Nevertheless, the composition and the size distribution of the droplets are difficult to constrain more precisely. Polarization measurements have given great results in the determination of the constituents of the haze. In the early 1980s, Kawabata et al.(1980) used the polarization data from the OCPP instrument on the spacecraft Pioneer Venus to constrain the properties of the haze. They obtained a refractive index of 1.45 ± 0.04 at Λ = 550nm effective radius of 0.23 ± 0.04μm, with a normalized size distribution variance of 0.18 ± 0.1. We introduce here new polarimetric measurements from 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 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. Our analysis is based on a polarized radiative transfer code similar to the one used by Hansen and Hovenier (1974). Using the particle size distribution from Kawabata et al.(1980) and a simple two-layered cloud model, we try to retrieve particle size and refrative index from nadir observations. We are interested in particular by the glory which is also visible in polarization and whose linear degree of polarization as a function of observation geometry is dependent on the cloud parameters. The polarization measured at higher latitudes provides constrains on the hazes, in particular their optical thickness. We will discuss the first results of our modeling of the glory. In the future we aim to characterize the cloud droplets on the planet along with their temporal and spatial variability. A comparison with the

  4. Communications Transceivers for Venus Surface Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Force, Dale A.

    2004-01-01

    The high temperature of the surface of Venus poses many difficulties. Previous Venus landers have only operated for short durations before succumbing to the heat. NASA Glenn Research Center conducted a study on communications for long duration Venus surface missions. I report the findings in this presentation. Current technology allows production of communications transceivers that can operate on the surface of Venus, at temperatures above 450 C and pressures of over 90 atmospheres. While these transceivers would have to be relatively simple, without much of the advanced signal processing often used in modern transceivers, since current and near future integrated circuits cannot operate at such high temperatures, the transceivers will be able to meet the requirements of proposed Venus Surface mission. The communication bands of interest are High Frequency or Very High Frequency (HFNHF) for communication between Venus surface and airborne probes (including surface to surface and air to air), and Ultra High Frequency (UHF) to Microwave bands for communication to orbiters. For HFNHF, transceivers could use existing vacuum tube technology. The packaging of the vacuum tubes may need modification, but the internal operating structure already operates at high temperatures. Using metal vacuum structures instead of glass, allows operation at high pressure. Wide bandgap transistors and diodes may be able to replace some of the thermionic components. VHF communications would be useful for line-of- sight operations, while HF would be useful for short-wave type communications using the Venusian ionosphere. UHF and microwave communications use magnetically focused thermionic devices, such as traveling wave tubes (TWTs), magnetron (M-type) amplifiers, and klystrons for high power amplifiers, and backward wave oscillators (BWOs) and reflex klystrons for oscillators. Permanent magnets are already in use in industry that can operate at 500 C. These magnets could focus electron beam

  5. Observed longitude variations of zonal wind, UV albedo and H2O at Venus cloud top level: the role of stationary gravity waves generated by Venus topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Hauchecorne, Alain; khatuntsev, Igor; Markiewicz, Wojciech; Marcq, emmanuel; Lebonnois, Sebastien; Patsaeva, Marina; Turin, Alexander; Fedorova, Anna

    2016-10-01

    Based on the analysis of UV images (at 365 nm) of Venus cloud top (altitude 67±2 km) collected with VMC (Venus Monitoring Camera) on board Venus Express (VEX), it is found that the zonal wind speed south of the equator (from 5°S to 15°S) shows a conspicuous variation (from -101 to -83 m/s) with geographic longitude of Venus, correlated with the underlying relief of Aphrodite Terra. 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 the cloud top level, break there and transfer their momentum to the zonal flow. Such upward propagation of gravity waves and influence on the wind speed vertical profile was shown to play an important role in the middle atmosphere of the Earth but is not reproduced in the current GCM of Venus atmosphere from LMD.In the equatorial regions, the UV albedo of clouds at 365 nm and the H2O mixing ratio at cloud top varies also with longitude, with an anti-correlation: the more H2O, the darker are the clouds. We argue that these variations may be simply explained by the divergence of the horizontal wind field. In the longitude region (from 60° to -10°) where the horizontal wind speed is increasing in magnitude (stretch), it triggers air upwelling which brings both the UV absorber and H2O at cloud top level and decreases the albedo, and vice-versa when the wind is decreasing in magnitude (compression). This picture is fully consistent with the classical view of Venus meridional circulation, with upwelling at equator revealed by horizontal air motions away from equator: the longitude effect is only an additional but important modulation of this effect. We argue that H2O enhancement is the sign of upwelling because the H2O mixing ratio decreases with altitude, comforting the view that the UV absorber is also brought to cloud top by upwelling.

  6. On the Decadal Variation of sulfur dioxide at the Cloud Top of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xi

    Venus atmosphere is a natural laboratory of sulfur chemistry. As one of the parent species of sulfur, sulfur dioxide (SO_2) is generated in the lower atmosphere and transported upward to the middle atmosphere, where it is further oxidized and eventually produces sulfuric acid cloud. The 30-year observations from the Pioneer Venus (Esposito et al., 1988) and the Venus Express (Marcq et al., 2012) show a decadal variation of total column abundance of SO_2 above the cloud top. The amplitude varies in about two orders of magnitude and therefore poses a question on what causes such a dramatic change on the sulfur budget. Previous interpretations include episodic volcanic eruption (Esposito 1984) and long-time dynamical oscillations (Marcq et al., 2012) that supported by a recent general circulation model on Venus (Parish et al., 2011). Here we attempt to understand the secular variation of SO_2 using a one-dimensional (1D) time-evolving photochemistry-diffusion model which includes about 50 species and about 350 reactions (Zhang et al., 2010; 2011). Specifically for this study, we perturb the mean steady state of the middle atmosphere of Venus by adding forcings at the bottom layer (at about 58 km). Two types of forcing are considered here: (1) the volcanic eruption is simulated by a mass flux injected from the bottom layer; and (2) a wavy structure is provided on the eddy diffusion profile to approximate the dynamical perturbations. Important parameters such as the amplitude and timescale of the forcings are constrained by the observation secular patterns. Possible consequences are discussed and the variations for other species are predicted to guide the future observations. This research was supported by the Bisgrove scholar Program in the University of Arizona.

  7. Dynamic compensation of Venus's geoid: A comparison with Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiefer, W. S.; Hager, B. H.; Richards, M. A.

    1985-01-01

    Unlike Earth, on Venus long wavelength geoid anomalies correlate well with topography. Venus's admittance curve between harmonic degrees 3 and 18 is inconsistent with Airy isostasy but is consistent with dynamic support from convection being the dominant mechanism of compensation on Venus. We model dynamic compensation on Venus using simple flow models which assume a spherically symmetric Newtonian mantle viscosity profile. Preliminary models parameterize the viscosity variation with depth as a 2 layer model with a boundary at 720 km depth. A model in which viscosity in the lower mantle is a factor of 10 lower than in the upper mantle can explain Venus's observed admittance curve for degrees 3 through 18. Dynamic models which include a chemical boundary between the upper and lower mantle do not successfully explain the observed admittance curve, indicating that Venus does not have a chemically layered mantle.

  8. Obliquity Variability of a Potentially Habitable Early Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnes, Jason W.; Quarles, Billy; Lissauer, Jack J.; Chambers, John; Hedman, Matthew M.

    2016-07-01

    Venus currently rotates slowly, with its spin controlled by solid-body and atmospheric thermal tides. However, conditions may have been far different 4 billion years ago, when the Sun was fainter and most of the carbon within Venus could have been in solid form, implying a low-mass atmosphere. We investigate how the obliquity would have varied for a hypothetical rapidly rotating Early Venus. The obliquity variation structure of an ensemble of hypothetical Early Venuses is simpler than that Earth would have if it lacked its large moon (Lissauer et al., 2012), having just one primary chaotic regime at high prograde obliquities. We note an unexpected long-term variability of up to ±7° for retrograde Venuses. Low-obliquity Venuses show very low total obliquity variability over billion-year timescales, comparable to that of the real Moon-influenced Earth.

  9. Venus transit 2004: An international education program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayo, L.; Odenwald, S.

    2003-04-01

    December 6th, 1882 was the last transit of the planet Venus across the disk of the sun. It was heralded as an event of immense interest and importance to the astronomical community as well as the public at large. There have been only six such occurrences since Galileo first trained his telescope on the heavens in 1609 and on Venus in 1610 where he concluded that Venus had phases like the moon and appeared to get larger and smaller over time. Many historians consider this the final nail in the coffin of the Ptolemaic, Earth centered solar system. In addition, each transit has provided unique opportunities for discovery such as measurement and refinement of the detection of Venus' atmosphere, calculation of longitudes, and calculation of the astronomical unit (and therefore the scale of the solar system). The NASA Sun Earth Connection Education Forum (SECEF) in partnership with the Solar System Exploration (SSE) and Structure and Evolution of the Universe (SEU) Forums, AAS Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS), and a number of NASA space missions and science centers are developing plans for an international education program centered around the June 8, 2004 Venus transit. The transit will be visible in its entirety from Europe and partially from the East Coast of the United States. We will use a series of robotic observatories including the Telescopes In Education (TIE) network distributed in latitude to provide observations of the transit that will allow middle and high school students to calculate the A.U. through application of parallax. We will compare the terrestrial planets in terms of the evolutionary processes that define their magnetic fields, their widely differing interactions with the solar wind, and the implications this has for life on Earth and elsewhere in the universe. We will also use Venus transit as a probe of episodes in American history (e.g. 1769: revolutionary era, 1882: post civil war era, and 2004: modern era). Museums and planetariums in

  10. Venus - Simulated Color of Leda Planitia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    This false color Magellan image shows a portion of Leda Planitia (plains) in the northern hemisphere of Venus, centered at 41 degrees north latitude, 52 degrees east longitude. The area is 220 kilometers (135 miles) wide and 275 kilometers (170 miles) long. This image was produced from Magellan radar data collected in Cycle 2 of the mission. Cycle 2 was completed January 15, 1992. The area was not imaged during the first cycle because of superior conjunction when the sun was between the Earth and Venus, preventing communication with the spacecraft. This image contains examples of several of the major geologic terrains on Venus and illustrates the basic stratigraphy or sequence of geologic events. The oldest terrains appear as bright, highly-fractured or chaotic highlands rising out of the plains. This is seen in the upper left, or northwest, quadrant of the image. The chaotic highlands, sometimes called tessera, may represent older and thicker crustal material and occupy about 15 percent of the surface of Venus. The circular ring structure in the lower left of the image is probably an impact crater. This 40 kilometer (25 miles) diameter crater has been given a proposed name, Heloise, after the French physician who lived from about 1098 to 1164 A.D. The crater was formed by the impact of an asteroid sometime before the plains lavas embayed and covered the region. The plains surround and embay the fractured highland tessera. Plains are formed by fluid volcanic flows that may have once formed vast lava seas which covered all the low lying surfaces. Plains comprise more than 80 percent of the surface of Venus. The most recent activity in the region is volcanism that produced the radar bright flows best seen in the upper right quadrant of the image. Those flows are similar to the darker plains volcanics, but apparently have more rugged surfaces that more efficiently scatter the radar signal back to the spacecraft. Thus the geologic sequence is early fracturing of the

  11. Venus tectonic styles and crustal differentiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaula, W. M.; Lenardic, A.

    1992-01-01

    Two of the most important constraints are known from Pioneer Venus data: the lack of a system of spreading rises, indicating distributed deformation rather than plate tectonics; and the high gravity/topography ratio, indicating the absence of an asthenosphere. In addition, the high depth/diameter ratios of craters on Venus indicate that Venus probably has no more crust than Earth. The problems of the character of tectonics and crustal formation and recycling are closely coupled. Venus appears to lack a recycling mechanism as effective as subduction, but may also have a low rate of crustal differentiation because of a mantle convection pattern that is more distributed, less concentrated, than Earth's. Distributed convection, coupled with the nonlinear dependence of volcanism on heat flow, would lead to much less magmatism, despite only moderately less heat flow, compared to Earth. The plausible reason for this difference in convective style is the absence of water in the upper mantle of Venus. We have applied finite element modeling to problems of the interaction of mantle convection and crust on Venus. The main emphasis has been on the tectonic evolution of Ishtar Terra, as the consequence of convergent mantle flow. The early stage evolution is primarily mechanical, with crust being piled up on the down-stream side. Then the downflow migrates away from the center. In the later stages, after more than 100 m.y., thermal effects develop due to the insulating influence of the thickened crust. An important feature of this modeling is the entrainment of some crustal material in downflows. An important general theme in both convergent and divergent flows is that of mixing vs. stratification. Models of multicomponent solid-state flow obtain that lower-density crustal material can be entrained and recycled, provided that the ration of low-density to high-density material is small enough (as in subducted slabs on Earth). The same considerations should apply in upflows; a

  12. The importance of being Florentine: a journey around the world for wax anatomical Venuses.

    PubMed

    de Ceglia, Francesco Paolo

    2011-01-01

    This article reconstructs the 19th century history of events regarding a few female wax anatomical models made in Florence. More or less faithful copies of those housed in Florence's Museum of Physics and Natural History, these models were destined for display in temporary exhibitions. In their travels through Europe and the United States, they transformed the expression "Florentine Venus" into a sort of brand name used to label and offer respectability to pieces of widely varying quality.

  13. MEETING VENUS. A Collection of Papers presented at the Venus Transit Conference Tromsoe 2012

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterken, Christiaan; Aspaas, Per Pippin

    2013-05-01

    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

  14. SO2 on Venus: A final cross-calibration with Pioneer Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1994-03-01

    The three observing programs under NASA Grant NAG5-1913 are described. They are NSOSS, VEOEB, and PCOEB. The scientific objectives for the IUE observation program NSOSS were to: make the first ever UV observations of a near-earth asteroid (4179 Toutatis), an irregular satellite of Jupiter (Himalia), and the Saturnian satellite Hyperion; obtain the first radially-dependent information on the UV color of Saturn's rings; gather the uncontaminated UV spectra of Iapetus's bright and dark hemispheres; and obtain a spectrum of Titania to initiate the comparitive study of UV photometric properties in Uranian system. The VEOEB program studied Venus SO2, an important indicator of key processes in the Venus atmosphere and perhaps Venus surface. Based on past Pioneer Venus and IUE observations, significant SO2 variations have been interpreted as indicating that the long term atmospheric SO2 abundance may be related to large, episodic injections from the surface or interior of Venus. The PCOEB program studied the Pluto-Charon system, for which evidence of a variable UV light curve has been presented. This program is to complete the coverage of that UV light curve, since only approximately 26% has been observed.

  15. SO2 on Venus: A final cross-calibration with Pioneer Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    The three observing programs under NASA Grant NAG5-1913 are described. They are NSOSS, VEOEB, and PCOEB. The scientific objectives for the IUE observation program NSOSS were to: make the first ever UV observations of a near-earth asteroid (4179 Toutatis), an irregular satellite of Jupiter (Himalia), and the Saturnian satellite Hyperion; obtain the first radially-dependent information on the UV color of Saturn's rings; gather the uncontaminated UV spectra of Iapetus's bright and dark hemispheres; and obtain a spectrum of Titania to initiate the comparitive study of UV photometric properties in Uranian system. The VEOEB program studied Venus SO2, an important indicator of key processes in the Venus atmosphere and perhaps Venus surface. Based on past Pioneer Venus and IUE observations, significant SO2 variations have been interpreted as indicating that the long term atmospheric SO2 abundance may be related to large, episodic injections from the surface or interior of Venus. The PCOEB program studied the Pluto-Charon system, for which evidence of a variable UV light curve has been presented. This program is to complete the coverage of that UV light curve, since only approximately 26% has been observed.

  16. Characterization of SO2 abundance in Venus' night-side mesosphere from SPICAV/VEX observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belyaev, Denis; Fedorova, Anna; Piccialli, Arianna; Marcq, Emmanuel; Montmessin, Franck; Bertaux, Jean-Loup; Evdokimova, Daria

    Sulfur dioxide (SO _{2}) is a key component of Venus’ atmosphere since the planet is totally covered by H _{2}SO _{4} droplets clouds at altitudes 50-70 km. Any significant change in the SO _{x} oxides above and within the clouds affects the photochemistry in the mesosphere (70-120 km). Recent continuous observations from the Venus Express orbiter (Belyaev et al., 2012; Marcq et al., 2013) and ground-based telescopes (Sandor et al., 2010; Krasnopolsky, 2010; Encrenaz et al., 2012) showed high variability of SO _{2} abundance with years, diurnal time and latitude on the day-side and terminators (commonly from 20 to 500 ppbv above the clouds). In the night-side mesosphere SO _{2} is not photo dissociative but, so far, its behavior has never been explored in details. In this paper we present first results from sulfur dioxide observations made by SPICAV UV spectrometer onboard Venus Express orbiter in regime of stellar occultation (Bertaux et al., 2007). In this mode the instrument observes night-side mesosphere and can register SO _{2} absorption bands in 190-220 nm and CO _{2} bands in 120-200 nm at altitudes from 85 to 110 km (spectral resolution is ˜2 nm). As a result, vertical distribution of SO _{2} and CO _{2} concentrations has been retrieved in observation period from June 2006 to April 2012, at latitude range 60(°) S-60(°) N and Venus local time 20:00-04:00. On the average, mixing ratio of sulfur dioxide fluctuates around ˜100 ppbv along altitude range 90-100 km. Our work is supported by the Program №22 of RAS and grant of the Russian Government to MIPT. References: Belyaev D. et al., 2012. Vertical profiling of SO _{2} and SO above Venus' clouds by SPICAV/SOIR solar occultations. Icarus 217, 740-751. Bertaux J.-L. et al., 2007. SPICAV on Venus Express: three spectrometers to study the global structure and composition of Venus atmosphere. Planet. Space Sci. 55, 1673-1700. Encrenaz T. et al., 2012. HDO and SO _{2} thermal mapping on Venus: evidence for

  17. Cometary water on Venus - implications of stochastic impacts

    SciTech Connect

    Grinspoon, D.H.; Lewis, J.S.

    1988-04-01

    Attention is given to a Venus water abundance model, incorporating a stochastic cometary source and nonthermal hydrogen escape, that reproduces both the near-steady-state balance between escape loss and infall replenishment implied by Venus' short water lifetime, and the consistency of the observed deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio with a steady state. It is shown that the stochastic variability of each of these quantities is large. Water's quasi-steady state on Venus is judged to be mediated by comet impacts, leading to an obscuration of the early water history of Venus by the history of random impacts. 40 references.

  18. 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.

  19. Venus gravity - A high-resolution map

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reasenberg, R. D.; Goldberg, Z. M.; Macneil, P. E.; Shapiro, I. I.

    1981-01-01

    The Doppler data from the radio tracking of the Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO) have been used in a two-stage analysis to develop a high-resolution map of the gravitational potential of Venus, represented by a central mass and a surface mass density. The two-stage procedure invokes a Kalman filter-smoother to determine the orbit of the spacecraft, and a stabilized linear inverter to estimate the surface mass density. The resultant gravity map is highly correlated with the topographic map derived from the PVO radar altimeter data. However, the magnitudes of the gravity variations are smaller than would be expected if the topography were uncompensated, indicating that at least partial compensation has taken place.

  20. Local time asymmetries in the Venus thermosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexander, M. J.; Stewart, A. I. F.; Solomon, S. C.; Bougher, S. W.

    1993-06-01

    A comparison is presented of the 130-m images taken in the Venus thermosphere by the Pioneer Venus Orbiter Ultraviolet Spectrometer (PVOUVS) to predictions by a model which incorporates current understanding of the global structure of the thermosphere, the mechanisms which excite the 130-nm transition in O, and the radiative transport of the 130-nm triplet in the thermosphere. The features identified in the data/model comparison appear as a local time asymmetry in B(130) and O at altitudes poleward of 30 deg. Oxygen densities at the evening terminator are typically a factor of 2 higher than those at the morning terminator. This asymmetry in O has never before been observed or predicted in the global thermospheric models.

  1. The clouds are hazes of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Esposito, L. W.; Knollenberg, R. G.; Marov, M. IA.; Toon, O. B.; Turco, R. P.

    1983-01-01

    Pioneer Venus and Venera probe data for the clouds of Venus are considered. These clouds consist of a main cloud deck at 45-70 km altitude, with thinner hazes above and below, although the microphysical properties of the main cloud are further subdivided into upper, middle and lower cloud levels. Much of the cloud exhibits a multimodal particle size distribution, with the mode most visible from the earth being H2SO4 droplets having 2-3 micron diameters. Despite variations, the vertical structure of the clouds indicates persistent features at sites separated by years and by great distances. The clouds are more strongly affected by radiation than by latent heat release, and the small particle size and weak convective activity observed are incompatible with lightning of cloud origin.

  2. Digital workstation for Venus topographic mapping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poehler, Paul; Haag, Nils N.; Maupin, Jerry A.; Howington-Kraus, Annie E.; Wu, Sherman S.

    1993-10-01

    A digital workstation was developed and is currently at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in Flagstaff, Arizona to be used for Venus topographic mapping. The system is based on a mapping and geocoding image correlation (GIS MAGIC) system developed by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) for the creation of precisely geocoded imagery data bases for both optical and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery. A multitude of data from various sources has been processed, including conventional aerial photographs, airborne and orbital SAR, and Spot. This paper covers the GIS MAGIC development history, hardware/software features and capabilities. Also covered are the types of modifications required to accommodate Venus radar data and results which can be achieved using the GIS MAGIC System.

  3. A mechanism for crustal recycling on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lenardic, A.; Kaula, W. M.; Bindschadler, D. L.

    1993-01-01

    Entrainment of lower crust by convective mantle downflows is proposed as a crustal recycling mechanism on Venus. The mechanism is characterized by thin sheets of crust being pulled into the mantle by viscous flow stresses. Finite element models of crust/mantle interaction are used to explore tectonic conditions under which crustal entrainment may occur. The recycling scenarios suggested by the numerical models are analogous to previously studied problems for which analytic and experimental relationships assessing entrainment rates have been derived. We use these relationships to estimate crustal recycling rates on Venus. Estimated rates are largely determined by (1) strain rate at the crust/mantle interface (higher strain rate leads to greater entrainment); and (2) effective viscosity of the lower crust (viscosity closer to that of mantle lithosphere leads to greater entrainment). Reasonable geologic strain rates and available crustal flow laws suggest entrainment can recycle approximately equal 1 cu km of crust per year under favorable conditions.

  4. The cartography of Venus with Magellan data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirk, R. L.; Morgan, H. F.; Russell, J. F.

    1993-01-01

    Maps of Venus based on Magellan data are being compiled at 1:50,000,000, 1:5,000,000 and 1:1,500,000 scales. Topographic contour lines based on radar altimetry data are overprinted on the image maps, along with feature nomenclature. Map controls are based on existing knowledge of the spacecraft orbit; photogrammetric triangulation, a traditional basis for geodetic control for bodies where framing cameras were used, is not feasible with the radar images of Venus. Preliminary synthetic aperture radar (SAR) image maps have some data gaps and cosmetic inconsistencies, which will be corrected on final compilations. Eventual revision of geodetic controls and of the adopted Venusian spin-axis location will result in geometric adjustments, particularly on large-scale maps.

  5. Our present view of Mercury and Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Danielson, G. E., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    The discipline of planetology received a quantum jump in new information on the planets Mercury and Venus from the Mariner 10 spacecraft. A detailed look at the ultraviolet markings in the upper atmosphere of Venus and their attendant motion has stimulated a considerable reevaluation of theories concerning the circulation, composition, and nature of this planet's upper atmosphere. The geologic history of Mercury as revealed by Mariner 10's television science data, from two close flybys, has challenged the prevalent theories of planetary evolution. The Mercury surface morphology and optical properties resemble those of the moon and seem to record a similar sequence of events despite their differences in density and proximity to both the sun and the asteroid belt.

  6. On the Geological History of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilevsky, A. T.; Head, J. W.

    2008-09-01

    mostly based on the analysis of data acquired by the Magellan mission: SAR images with 100-200 m resolution and the maps of topography, surface radar reflectivity, emissivity, roughness and gravity anomalies [1]. After initial analysis of the data summarized in [2, 3] several groups of researchers continued to study the geology and geophysics of the planet, resulting in numerous publications, some of which are referenced below. Very important for the studies emphasizing the geologic history of Venus was, and still is, a program of 1:5,000,000 geologic mapping coordinated by the US Geological Survey [4]. A recent summary of these studies can be found in [5]. Observations and analysis: All researchers in this study area analyze the same data sets and follow the same guidelines [4, 6] so geologic units identified by them and their time sequences are generally similar, although different researchers may name the same units differently and may interpret differently some details of local time sequences. Figure 1 shows a time sequence of geologic units suggested by [7, 8]: materials of tessera terrain (tt), densely fractured plains (pdf), fractured and ridged plains (pfr), shield plains (psh), plains with wrinkle ridges (pwr), lobate (pl) and smooth (ps) plains as well as materials of radar-dark craterassociated parabolas (cdp). These are material units. In addition, some researchers identify and map structural units. In Figure 1 examples of these are fracture belts (fb) and rifted terrain (rt). synchronous on a global scale. The first option can be visualized with Figure 1, suggesting that it is applicable for Venus globally. This option was suggested by Basilevsky and Head [e.g., 7, 8] as well as by Ivanov and Head [e.g., 9]. The second option, first clearly formulated by [10], can be visualized by the upper part of Figure 2 showing the situation in three different hypothetical geologic provinces on Venus. In these provinces the unit time sequences are the same: tt

  7. Effects of turbulence in the atmosphere of Venus on Pioneer Venus radio, phase 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woo, R.; Kendall, W.; Ishimaru, A.; Berwin, R.

    1973-01-01

    The prediction of the turbulence effects in the Venus atmosphere on Pioneer Venus radio was investigated. A careful investigation based on a theoretical and experimental study of the power spectrum of the Mariner 5 amplitude fluctuations is carried out and the results contribute considerably to our scientific knowledge of turbulence in the atmosphere of Venus. Fully developed turbulence is seen to exist predominantly in the altitude range of 41 - 49 km. This result is consistent with the high wind shear and wind velocities observed by Venera 4 for altitudes higher than 40 km. The outer scale size of turbulence is on the order of 100 m, the structure constant for the dayside atmosphere 3.9 x 10 to the -7 power m to the -1/3rd power, and that for the nightside atmosphere 2.9 x 10 to the -7 power m to the -1/3rd power.

  8. The Venus nitric oxide night airglow - Model calculations based on the Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bougher, S. W.; Gerard, J. C.; Stewart, A. I. F.; Fesen, C. G.

    1990-01-01

    The mechanism responsible for the Venus nitric oxide (0,1) delta band nightglow observed in the Pioneer Venus Orbiter UV spectrometer (OUVS) images was investigated using the Venus Thermospheric General Circulation Model (Dickinson et al., 1984), modified to include simple odd nitrogen chemistry. Results obtained for the solar maximum conditions indicate that the recently revised dark-disk average NO intensity at 198.0 nm, based on statistically averaged OUVS measurements, can be reproduced with minor modifications in chemical rate coefficients. The results imply a nightside hemispheric downward N flux of (2.5-3) x 10 to the 9th/sq cm sec, corresponding to the dayside net production of N atoms needed for transport.

  9. Venus - Impact Crater in Eastern Navka Region

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    This Magellan image, which is 50 kilometers (31 miles) in width and 80 kilometers (50 miles) in length, is centered at 11.9 degrees latitude, 352 degrees longitude in the eastern Navka Region of Venus. The crater, which is approximately 8 kilometers (5 miles) in diameter, displays a butterfly symmetry pattern. The ejecta pattern most likely results from an oblique impact, where the impactor came from the south and ejected material to the north.

  10. Venus clouds - A dirty hydrochloric acid model.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hapke, B.

    1972-01-01

    The spectral and polarization data for Venus are consistent with micrometer-sized aerosol cloud particles of hydrochloric acid with soluble and insoluble iron compounds, whose source could be volcanic or crustal dust. The yellow color of the clouds could be due to absorption bands in the near UV involving ferric iron and chlorine complexes. It is pointed out that the UV features could arise from variations in the concentrations of iron and hydrochloric acid in the cloud particles.

  11. Venus 1882 and Jean-Charles Houzeau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterken, C.

    2009-06-01

    This paper focuses on one particular type of telescope - the heliometer - designed for solving one specific basic problem in astronomy: the scale factor of the solar system. One very special instrument of this type was the ``heliometer with unequal focal lengths'' designed by the Belgian astronomer Jean-Charles Houzeau for the 1882 transit of Venus. We also draw attention to the most interesting personality of Houzeau, and to his social engagement that went much beyond his work as a scientist.

  12. Collisional plateaus. [in earth and Venus lithospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morgan, P.; Burke, K.

    1985-01-01

    Aspects of the geology of collisional plateaus formed by the thickening of continental crust are briefly reviewed. The history of studies of collisional plateaus is summarized, and igneous activity in collisional plateaus is discussed. Isostatic considerations pertaining to these plateaus are addressed, developing models of isostatic support of topography which illustrate the importance of compressional tectonics in the creation of high altitude plateaus. Possible analogous environments on Venus are considered. Finally, the paradox of extension associated with compression in the plateaus is discussed.

  13. Volcanic Plumes on Venus and Io

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glaze, Lori S.; Grant, John (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Proxemy Research is under contract to NASA to perform science research of volcanic plumes on Venus and lo. This report is submitted in accordance with contract NASW -98012 and contains a summary of activities conducted over the time period indicated. In addition to a synopsis of science research conducted, any manuscripts submitted for publication in this time period are also attached. Abstracts to scientific conferences may also be included if appropriate.

  14. An impact hypothesis for Venus argon anomalies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaula, W. M.; Newman, W. I.

    1997-03-01

    The Ar-36+38 argon-excess anomally of Venus has been hypothesized to have its origin in the impact of an outer solar system body of about 100-km diameter. A critical evaluation is made of this hypothesis and its competitors; it is judged that its status must for the time being remain one of 'Sherlock Holmes' type, in that something so improbable must be accepted when all alternatives are eliminated.

  15. Waves on the subsolar ionopause of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Russell, C. T.; Singh, R. N.; Luhmann, J. G.; Elphic, R. C.; Brace, L. H.

    1987-01-01

    The subsolar ionopause of Venus is expected to be stable to both the Kelvin-Helmholtz and flute instabilities. However, magnetic profiles obtained in the subsolar region indicate that the surface of the ionopause contains large amplitude corrugations, perhaps incipient flux ropes. A possible mechanism for destabilizing the boundary is suggested by the observation that the ion density does not drop abruptly at the ionopause but continues to decrease smoothly into the magnetosheath.

  16. Tectonic contrasts between Venus and the earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaula, W. M.

    1984-01-01

    The long-wave features of the gravity field of Venus differ from those of the earth's field not only in their strong positive correlation with topography, but also in their gentler spectral slope. These properties are inconsistent with generation of the gravity field by plate tectonics or by processes at great depths; they are consistent with generation by a mantle convective system supporting the broad features in topography with an effective compensation depth of about 450 km.

  17. Studying Venus using a GIS database

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Price, Maribeth; Suppe, John

    1993-01-01

    A Geographic Information System (GIS) can significantly enhance geological studies on Venus because it facilitates concurrent analysis of many sources of data, as demonstrated by our work on topographic and deformation characteristics of tesserae. We are creating a database of structures referenced to real-world coordinates to encourage the archival of Venusian studies in digital format and to foster quantitative analysis of many combinations of data. Contributions to this database from all aspects of Venusian science are welcome.

  18. Stopped-Rotor Cyclocopter for Venus Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Husseyin, Sema; Warmbrodt, William G.

    2016-01-01

    The cyclocopter system can use two or more rotating blades to create lift, propulsion and control. This system is explored for its use in a mission to Venus. Cyclocopters are not limited to speed and altitude and can provide 360 degrees of vector thrusting which is favorable for good maneuverability. The novel aspect of this study is that no other cyclocopter configuration has been previously proposed for Venus or any (terrestrial or otherwise) exploration application where the cyclocopters rotating blades are stopped, and act as fixed wings. The design considerations for this unique planetary aerial vehicle are discussed in terms of implementing the use of a cyclorotor blade system combined with a fixed wing and stopped rotor mechanism. This proposed concept avoids many of the disadvantages of conventional-rotor stopped-rotor concepts and accounts for the high temperature, pressure and atmospheric density present on Venus while carrying out the mission objectives. The fundamental goal is to find an ideal design that implements the combined use of cyclorotors and fixed wing surfaces. These design concepts will be analyzed with the computational fluid dynamics tool RotCFD for aerodynamic assessment. Aspects of the vehicle design is 3D printed and tested in a small water tunnel or wind tunnel.

  19. Venus - Lineated Plains in Lakshmi Region

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This mosaic shows an area of the Lakshmi region that is located 30 degrees north latitude and 333.3 degrees east longitude. (Longitude on Venus is measured from 0 degrees to 360 degrees east). The area shown measures about 37 kilometers (23 miles) wide and 80 kilometers (50 miles) long. Based on data from the Pioneer Venus Orbiter and the ground-based Arecibo Radar Observatory, it is known that this region is located on the low rise that separates Sedna Planitia and Guinevere Planitia, just to the west of Eistla Regio. Two sets of parallel lineations are seen intersecting almost at right angles. The fainter lineations are spaced at regular intervals of about one kilometer (0.6 mile) and extend beyond the boundary of the image. The width of the faint lineations is at the limit of resolution of the best Magellan images. The brighter, more dominant lineations are less regular and, in places, appear to begin and end where they intersect the fainter lineations. It is not clear whether the two sets of lineations are faults or fractures, but in other Magellan images, these bright lineations are associated with pit craters and volcanic features. This type of terrain has not been seen on Venus nor on other planets. North is at the top of the image.

  20. Venus round trip using solar sail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, KaiJian; Zhang, RongZhi; Xu, Dong; Wang, JiaSong; Li, ShaoMin

    2012-08-01

    Trajectory optimization and simulation is performed for Venus round trip (VeRT) mission using solar sail propulsion. Solar gravity is included but atmospheric drag and shadowing effects are neglected in the planet-centered escape and capture stages. The spacecraft starts from the Geostationary orbit (GEO) at a predetermined time to prepare a good initial condition for the Earth-Venus transfer, although the launch window is not an issue for spacecraft with solar sails. The Earth-Venus phase and the return trip are divided into three segments. Two methods are adopted to maintain the mission trajectory for the VeRT mission and then compared through a numerical simulation. According to the first approach, Planet-centered and heliocentric maneuvers are modeled using a set of blended analytical control laws instead of the optimal control techniques. The second procedure is the Direct Attitude Angle Optimization in which the attitude angles of the solar sail are adopted as the optimization variables during the heliocentric transfer. Although neither of the two methods guarantees a globally optimal trajectory, they are more efficient and will produce a near-optimal solution if employed properly. The second method has produced a better result for the minimum-time transfer of the VeRT mission demonstrating the effectiveness of the methods in the preliminary design of the complex optimal interplanetary orbit transfers.

  1. Evolution of the atmosphere of Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yung, Y. L.

    1981-01-01

    The photochemistry of the stratosphere of Venus was modeled using an updated and expanded chemical scheme, and the results of recent laboratory studies. The model satisfactorily accounts for the observations of CO, O2, (1) and SO2 in the stratosphere. Oxygen, derived from CO2 photolysis, is primarily consumed by CO2 recombination and oxidation of SO2 to H2SO4. Photolysis of HCl in the upper stratosphere provides a major source of odd hydrogen radicals essential for the catalytic oxidation of CO. Oxidation of SO2 by O occurs in the lower stratosphere, with the O-O bond broken by S + O2 and SO + HO2. The sensitivity of stratospheric chemistry to ambient H2 abundance was studied and the model prefers the high value (1 10 ppm) recently inferred from the Pioneer Venus ionospheric measurements. The importance of the photochemical production of S2O, (SO)2, S2, H2S2O2 and H2S2O3 is speculated. A number of previously unsuspected similarities between the chemistry of the stratospheres of Venus and the Earth, presented and discussed.

  2. Signs of hypothetical fauna of Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ksanfomality, Leonid V.

    2014-04-01

    On March 1 and 5, 1982, experiments in television photography instrumented by the landers VENERA-13 and -14, yielded 37 panoramas (or their fragments) of the Venus surface at the landing site. Over the past 31 years, no similar missions have been sent to Venus. Using a modern technique the VENERA panoramas were re-examined. A new analysis of Venusian surface panoramas' details has been made. A few relatively large objects of hypothetical fauna of Venus were found with size ranging from a decimeter to half meter and with unusual morphology. Treated once again VENERA-14 panoramic images revealed `amisada' object about 15 cm in size possessing apparent terramorphic features. The amisada's body stands out with its lizard-like shape against the stone plates close by. The amisada can be included into the list of the most significant findings of the hypothetical Venusian fauna. The amisada's body show slow movements, which is another evidence of the Venusian fauna's very slow style of activity, which appears to be associated with its energy constraints or, and that is more likely, with the properties of its internal medium. The terramorphic features of the Venusian fauna, if they are confirmed, may point out at outstandingly important and yet undiscovered general laws of the animated nature on different planets.

  3. Venus climate stability and volcanic resurfacing rates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bullock, M. A.; Grinspoon, D. H.; Pollack, J. B.

    1994-01-01

    The climate of Venus is to a large degree controlled by the radiative properties of its massive atmosphere. In addition, outgassing due to volcanic activity, exospheric escape processes, and surface/atmosphere interactions may all be important in moderating the abundances of atmospheric CO2 and other volatiles. We have developed an evolutionary climate model for Venus using a systems approach that emphasizes feedbacks between elements in the climate system. Modules for atmospheric radiative transfer, surface/atmosphere interactions, tropospheric chemistry, and exospheric escape processes have so far been developed. Climate feedback loops result from interconnections between modules, in the form of the environmental parameters pressure, temperature, and atmospheric mixing ratios. The radiative transfer module has been implemented by using Rosseland mean opacities in a one dimensional grey radiative-convective model. The model has been solved for the static (time independent) case to determine climate equilibrium points. The dynamics of the model have also been explored by employing reaction/diffusion kinetics for possible surface atmosphere heterogeneous reactions over geologic timescales. It was found that under current conditions, the model predicts that the climate of Venus is at or near an unstable equilibrium point. The effects of constant rate volcanism and corresponding exsolution of volatiles on the stability of the climate model were also explored.

  4. Comparing Volcanic Terrains on Venus and Earth: How Prevalent are Pyroclastic Deposits on Venus?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carter, Lynn M.; Campbell, B. A.; Glaze, L. S.

    2012-01-01

    In the last several years, astronomers have discovered several exoplanets with masses less than 10 times that of the Earth [1]. Despite the likely abundance of Earth-sized planets, little is known about the pathways through which these planets evolve to become habitable or uninhabitable. Venus and Earth have similar planetary radii and solar orbital distance, and therefore offer a chance to study in detail the divergent evolution of two objects that now have radically different climates. Understanding the extent, duration, and types of volcanism present on Venus is an important step towards understanding how volatiles released from the interior of Venus have influenced the development of the atmosphere. Placing constraints on the extent of explosive volcanism on Venus can provide boundary conditions for timing, volumes, and altitudes for atmospheric injection of volatiles. In addition, atmospheric properties such as near-surface temperature and density affect how interior heat and volatiles are released. Radar image data for Venus can be used to determine the physical properties of volcanic deposits, and in particular, they can be used to search for evidence of pyroclastic deposits that may result from explosive outgassing of volatiles. For explosive volcanism to occur with the current high atmospheric pressure, magma volatile contents must be higher than is typical on Earth (at least 2-4% by weight) [2,3]. In, addition, pyroclastic flows should be more prevalent on Venus than convective plumes and material may not travel as far from the vent source as it would on Earth [3]. Areas of high radar backscatter with wispy margins that occur near concentric fractures on Sapho Patera [4] and several coronae in Eastern Eistla Regio [5] have been attributed to collapse of eruption columns and runout of rough materials.

  5. Venus' Atla and Beta Regiones: Formation of Chasmata and Coronae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stoddard, P. R.; Jurdy, D. M.

    2004-12-01

    Two likely areas of current tectonic and volcanic activity on Venus are Atla and Beta Regiones. Both are marked by pronounced topographic and geoid highs and each lies at the intersection of multiple rifts, i.e. the chasmata system. These regiones may be surface expressions of mantle upwellings. We examine the distribution, style, and attitude of coronae with respect to the two geoid highs. Coronae -- circular features unique to Venus -- could be caused by individual rising diapirs. Unlike Earth, Venus shows little evidence of horizontal motion, resulting in juxtaposition of coronae of all ages. Furthermore, there is little erosion to modify features. In our analysis, we use the three-tiered classification (based on the interior morphology) of 394 coronae, hence termed domal, circular, and calderic. These differing styles may reflect different stages in the evolution of a corona: from domal (youngest, possibly still active) features, progressing through increasing degrees of collapse to the calderic coronae. Comparing locations of these features shows the domal coronae average higher elevations, and calderic at lower elevations, with circular in between. Similar comparisons of other characteristics of the coronae, such as size, elongation, or dip, also show the progression from domal through calderic to circular. Both Atla and Beta are ringed by many coronae, but neither has coronae at or near their crests even within 20 m of their geoid highs. Coronae do occur in many rift segments, yet none occurs at or near these intersection points. Perhaps just as remarkable, Atla has a partial ring of four domal coronae, all within a 10-m geoid range of each other, whereas Beta has a partial ring of 6 or so calderic coronae between three and four 10-m contours from its crest. In both instances, the rings parallel geoid contour lines. These are the nearest coronae of their type to the crests. If corona formation is contemporaneous with the uplift process at Atla and Beta, and

  6. Regional tectonic analysis of Venus as part of the Pioneer Venus guest investigator project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, David R.

    1991-01-01

    Over the past year, much of the tectonic analysis of Venus we have done has centered on global properties of the planet, in order to understand fundamental aspects of the dynamics of the mantle and lithosphere of Venus. We have developed convection models of the Earth and Venus. These models assume whole mantle internally-heated convection. The viscosity is temperature, volatile-content, and stress dependent. An initial temperature and volatile content is assumed, and the thermal evolution is tracked for 4.6 billion years. During this time, heating occurs by decay of radiogenic elements in the mantle, and degassing and regassing of volatiles takes place at the surface. For a model assuming plate tectonics as the primary heat loss mechanism, representing the Earth through most of it's history and perhaps Venus' earlier history, degassing of the mantle was found to occur rapidly (approximately 200 My) over a large range of parameters. Even for parameters chosen to represent extreme cases of an initially cool planet, low radiogenic heating, and large initial volatile complement, the mantle water content was degassed to an equilibrium value in about 2 By. These values may be applicable to the early Venus, if a large, Moon-forming impact on Earth resulted in efficient heating and loss of water, leaving Venus with a comparably greater volatile budget and less vigorous early convection. It may therefore be impossible to retain large amounts of water in the interior of Venus until the planet cools down enough for the 'cold-trap' effect to take place. This effect traps crust forming melts within the mantle due to a cusp in the solidus, causing these melts to refreeze at depth into a dense eclogite phase, which will inhibit ascent of this material to the surface. This effect, however, requires a hydrous mantle, so early loss of water might prevent it from taking place. Since without plate tectonics there is no mechanism for regassing volatiles into the mantle, as occurs on

  7. Multilayer modeling of the aureole photometry during the Venus transit: comparison between SDO/HMI and VEx/SOIR data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pere, C.; Tanga, P.; Widemann, Th.; Bendjoya, Ph.; Mahieux, A.; Wilquet, V.; Vandaele, A. C.

    2016-11-01

    Context. The mesosphere of Venus is a critical range of altitudes in which complex temperature variability has been extensively studied by the space mission Venus Express (VEx) during its eight-year mission (2006-2014). In particular, the Solar Occultation in the InfraRed (SOIR) instrument probed the morning and evening terminator in the 70-170 km altitude region, at latitudes extending from pole to pole, using spectroscopic multiband observations collected during occultations of the Sun at the limb. Data collected at different epochs and latitudes show evidence of short and medium timescale variability as well as latitudinal differences. Spatial and temporal variability is also predicted in mesospheric and thermospheric terminator models with lower boundary conditions at 70 km near cloud tops. Aims: The Venus transit on June 5-6, 2012 was the first to occur with a spacecraft in orbit around Venus. It has been shown that sunlight refraction in the mesosphere of Venus is able to provide useful constraints on mesospheric temperatures at the time of the transit. The European Space Agency's Venus Express provided space-based observations of Venus during the transit. Simultaneously, the Venus aureole photometry was observed using ground-based facilities and solar telescopes orbiting Earth (NASA's Solar Dynamic Observatory, JAXA's HINODE). As the properties of spatial and temporal variability of the mesosphere are still debated, the opportunity of observing it at all latitudes at the same time, offered by the transit, is rather unique. In this first paper, we establish new methods for analyzing the photometry of the so-called aureole that is produced by refraction of the solar light, and we investigate the choice of physical models that best reproduce the observations. Methods: We compared the refractivity profile obtained by SOIR at the time of the June 2012 transit to the aureole photometry. For this goal, we explored isothermal and multilayered refraction models of

  8. Carbonate-sulfate volcanism on Venus?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kargel, Jeffrey S.; Kirk, Randolph L.; Fegley, Bruce, Jr.

    1994-11-01

    Venusian canali, outflow channels, and associated volcanic deposits resemble fluvial landforms more than they resemble volcanic features on Earth and Mars. Some canali have meandering habits and features indicative of channel migration that are very similar to meandering river channels and flood plains on Earth, venusian outflow channels closely resemble water-carved outflow channels on Mars and the Channeled Scabland in Washington, collapsed terrains at the sources of some venusian channels resemble chaotic terrains at the sources of martian outflow channels, venusian lava deltas are similar to bird's-foot deltas such as the Mississippi delta, and venusian valley networks indicate sapping. We have developed an alternative possibility that the lava had a water-like rheology and a melting point slightly greater than Venus' surface temperature, thus accounting for the unusual behavior of the lava. Unlike silicate lavas, some carbonatites (including carbonate-sulfate-rich liquids) have these properties; thus they can flow great distances while retaining a high fluidity, significant mechanical erosiveness, and substantial capacity to transport and deposit sediment. Venusian geochemistry and petrology are consistent with extensive eruptions of carbonatite lavas, which could have crustal and/or mantle origins. Venus' atmosphere (especially CO2, HCl, and HF abundances) and rocks may be in local chemical equilibrium, which suggests that the upper crust contains large amounts of calcite, anhydrite, and other salts. Chemical analyses indicate, according to some models, that Venusian rocks may contain 4-19% calcite and anhydrite. Mixtures of crustal salts could melt at temperatures a few tens to a few hundred Kelvins higher than Venus' surface temperature; hence, melting may be induced by modest endogenetic or impact heating. Salts may have many of the same geologic roles on Venus as water and ice have on Mars. A molten salt (carbonatite) 'aquifer' may exist beneath a few

  9. Carbonate-sulfate volcanism on Venus?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kargel, Jeffrey S.; Kirk, Randolph L.; Fegley, Bruce, Jr.

    1994-01-01

    Venusian canali, outflow channels, and associated volcanic deposits resemble fluvial landforms more than they resmeble volcanic features on Earth and Mars. Some canali have meandering habits and features indicative of channel migration that are very similar to meandering river channels and flood plains on Earth, venusian outflow channels closely resemble water-carved outflow channels on Mars and the Channeled Scabland in Washington, collapsed terrains at the sources of some venusian channels resemble chaotic terrains at the sources of martian outflow channels, venusian lava deltas ar