www.whyville.net Jun 22, 2000 Weekly Issue

The Last Frontier: Venus

Users' Rating
Rate this article

The world's last frontier is space, the most outer reaches known to man. Now, each week for 11 more weeks, I will report on something of interest from the realms of space.

by Etrnl *
Space Explorer

The Last Frontier: Venus

This week's topic is Venus, the second planet from the sun. Let me start with Venus's history.

Venus. The name comes from Greek mythology. Venus, or Aphrodite, was goddess of love and beauty. She was a goddess, though, that became very jealous. When Hades, god of death, took Demeter's daughter, Aphrodite was happy. Aphrodite was jealous of Demeter's daughter's beauty. There are also many other tales to back this trait up.

The first spacecraft to fly by Venus was the Mariner 2. The year was 1962, and this was the first time a spacecraft from Earth encountered another planet. Soon afterwards, many other spacecrafts followed. More than twenty up to date, which include Pioneer Venus and the Soviet Venera 7 and Venera 9. Venera 7 returned the first photographs of the surface, but the most recent one is the orbiting US spacecraft Magellan which produced many detailed maps of Venus.

Courtesy of
Here are some facts about Venus:
  • Venus is a blue hued planet. If you looked directly at it though, it would seem yellow, or orange. This is because the atmosphere of Venus is nothing but carbon dioxide.

  • The sunlight that hits venus is very bright compared to Earth, but, because of Venus's carbon dioxide atmosphere, only around 2% of the light actually reaches the surface.

  • Being a terestrial planet, Venus, like all terrestrial planets, is similar in size with Earth.

  • Venus rotates every 243 Earth days. A fast spin for a small planet.

I hope that you have learned all that you need to know about Venus. If you have any questions, please, feel free to Y-mail me @ Etrnl *, either by going to Whyville Faces, clicking the letter E, and finding Etrnl *, or, if I'm already in your address book, you can Y-mail me from there.

Thanks, Etrnl *

(I would like to thank the makers of the websites pds.jpl.nasa.gov, and www.seds.org. The JPL site gave me the brilliant photo of Venus, and www.seds.org gave me some of my info regarding the spacecrafts and the characteristics of Venus.)



  Back to front page

times@whyville.net 223