NASA has spent a lifetime trying to find life on Mars and then Venus made the news more so than Mars….
Researchers have discovered significant sources of phosphine in the atmosphere of Venus — a colorless and odorless gas that they say is a possible sign of life, as it’s often the result of organic matter breaking down here on Earth.
The research was led by Jane Greaves from Cardiff University in the UK, and was published in Nature Astronomy today.
So far, Venus hasn’t topped the list of planets seen by astrobiologists as most likely to harbor life. Its surface is a swirling mix of toxic and extremely hot vapors, and temperatures can reach a toasty 800 degrees Fahrenheit (426 Celsius), while high concentrations of sulfuric acid raining from the skies — with thick clouds blocking most sunlight from ever reaching the surface — would ensure that life as we know it would stand little chance of surviving there.
But despite the inhospitable environment on the surface, some microbial life may be able to survive in the planet’s atmosphere, the researchers hypothesize.
Is it possible that there could actually be some form of life on Venus? What can we do to verify the findings?
Researchers announced on Monday that they had found evidence of life in the clouds of Venus, drawing massive media attention.
To confirm that life exists in the planet’s atmosphere, however, would require us to actually go there and have a closer look. The last time a spacecraft entered the Venusian atmosphere was the Soviet Union’s Vega 2 in 1985.
But luckily, private New Zealand-based space company Rocket Lab says it’s already working on sending its own Electron rocket, with a 660 pound spacecraft called Photon on board, to the planet as soon as 2023, The New York Times reports.
All might want to tread lightly….for like the New World of the 15th century….a flag has already been planted on Venus….
Russian space agency chief Dmitry Rogozin called Venus a “Russian planet” on Tuesday at an industry exhibition taking place in Moscow.
The unusual comment followed the recent high-profile discovery of significant sources of phosphine gas in the planet’s atmosphere, a possible sign of life.
“Our country was the first and only one to successfully land on Venus,” Rogozin said, as quoted by The Moscow Times, referring to the country’s successful explorations of Venus in the 60s, 70s and 80s.
Roscosmos piled on, writing that the “enormous gap between the Soviet Union and its competitors in the investigation of Venus contributed to the fact that the United States called Venus a Soviet planet,” in a statement quoted by Euronews.
Just a reminder of the finer points of “Space Law”…..
Looks like the rush to claim space has begun and will not end well….wars have broken out over who claims what…..that is history.
Rain a cooler weather will be ours for a few days…..some well deserved coolness.
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”