VENUS: FEATURES AND EXPLORATIONS
Jessa Marie A. Derecho
Mrs. Esther P. Ocubillo
01 March 2011
VENUS: FEATURES AND EXPLORATIONS
Venus is one of the most beautiful and tantalizing heavenly body. It is much closer to Earth than any other planets. Venus is a brilliant object in the night sky and sometimes brighter than any other stars in the heavens. Only the Sun and the Moon outshines her. Like the remaining planets, Venus revolves around the Sun inside the solar orbit of the Earth. Thus, Venus can either be a morning or evening star.1 Her name, Venus, comes from the Roman goddess of love and beauty. Venus, as a planet, is rather frustrating. She hides herself in a thick white veil of clouds and no one clearly seen her surface.2 The astronomers are force to engage in an extensive effort to uncover secrets of her for they know a little about it. The main purpose of my paper is to show some facts about Venus and also deepen the knowledge of the readers. Venus possesses some features that are nearly the same as Earth’s. One of this is that Venus is closely the same size and weight as Earth. Just a little smaller in diameter and lighter in weight. Its gravity also holds captive an atmosphere about the size of our own.3 Venus internal structure is similar to Earth’s as it is composed of crust, mantle and core. That’s why Venus is often thought of as Earth’s twin.
1Robert Leo I. Heller, “Planets Inside the Orbit of Earth,” Challenges to Science (Montreal: McGraw-Hill Book Inc., 1979), p. 402.
2Gerald S. Hawkins, “Venus and Mars,” Splendor in the Sky (London: Harper and Row Publishing House, 1961), p. 122.
3Mark O. Palin, “Venus,” The Physical World (Miami: Hunter-Dee Book Inc., 1999), p. 99 But in other ways, Venus appears to be quite different from Earth. First, Venus rotates in a very strange manner. Most of the planets rotate counterclockwise while Venus rotates clockwise or backward. Then, Venus may have atmosphere but it wouldn’t be able to support life as you know like Earth. Its atmosphere is made up of more than 90% of Carbon Dioxide and almost no Oxygen. Her temperature too is high which is 100 times greater than Earth’s and enough to melt Lead.4 Unlike other planets, Venus surface is never seen though many scientists claimed to have a glimpse of it through cloud openings which seems very unlikely because her dense clouds are hundreds of miles deep.5 Venus, though rotating around the Sun, never experiences day and night because of the thick, ash-like clouds covering it. It is dark for sunlight does not penetrate the clouds. What is the surface of the Venus like? Some astronomers said that Venus’ surface is covered by large mountain ranges and deep swamps. People who don’t know much about Science think that Venus is covered with glowing waters. But, according to Galileo’s old journal, Venus is impossibly covered by water because of its high temperature. The best guess today is that Venus is chiefly a vast and sandy desert. The desert is flat, for wind-driven sand has long ago worn down the hills and filled in the hollows. It is dry, for rain cannot fall on it and it is surely unable to support life.6
4Heller, p. 403.
5Roy A. Gallant, “Exploring Venus,” Man’s Reach for the Stars (New York: Doubleday and Company Inc., 1959), p. 146.
6Patricia C. Lauber, “Mercury and Venus,” All about Planets (New York: Random House Inc., 1960), p. 56. Venus is mostly covered by volcanic plates because of her high temperature. The surface has been severely fractured and folded by stresses caused by convection of the Venusian mantle because of frequent volcanic eruptions. Radar images indicate that the highlands on Venus have rougher surfaces than Earth’s land forms because its images shows mini magma explosions inside.7 The light emitted by Venus which makes her shine in the dawn or evening possibly comes from the great...
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