10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Planet Venus

The surface temperature of Venus is 462 °C. Moreover, there is no seasonal change on the planet.

Planet Venus is known as the third brightest celestial object in the sky after the sun and the moon. People sometimes refer to it as the sister planet to Earth mainly because their sizes and mass are almost similar. However, both planets are quite different in terms of characteristics. Planet Venus is closest to our home. However, it cannot house or shelter humans. 

Venera 1
Mockup of the spacecraft Venera 1. Source: Wikimedia Commons

According to experts, the clouds that cover the surface of Venus are formed with the help of sulphuric acid. Moreover, the planet is named after Venus, the Roman goddess of love and beauty. 

Following are ten fascinating facts regarding Venus:

1) Venus is known as the morning and the evening star:

Ancient civilisations thought Venus was two different celestial bodies. The said bodies were known as Phosphorus and Hesperus by the Greeks, and Lucifer and Vesper by the Romans.

2) A single day on Venus is longer than one year on planet Earth:

It takes around 243 days for the planet to pivot once on its axis, which is the longest rotational period of any planet in the Solar System

3) Earth and Venus once had a similar climate: 

According to various experts, the climate of Venus was once similar to Earth. It once had an abundance of water and oceans. However, the water vaporized due to high surface temperatures. The surface of Venus is extremely hot and cannot house any living creatures.

4) Venus rotates in the opposite direction:

Most of the planets in our solar system rotate counter-clockwise on their axis. However, Venus rotates clockwise. According to various experts, this may have been caused by a collision with an asteroid or planetoid.

5) Venus is known as the hottest planet in our solar system:

The surface temperature of Venus is 462 °C. Moreover, there is no seasonal change on the planet because it does not tilt on its axis. The thick atmosphere of about 96.5% carbon dioxide catches heat and causes a greenhouse effect.

6) The Russians sent the first shuttle to Venus:

In around 1961, Russians sent the Venera 1 space probe to Venus. However, they could not keep in touch with the shuttle, and it vanished in the space. The USA’s Mariner 2 managed to take the measurements of the planet in 1962. Moreover, the Soviet’s Venera 3 was the first ship to land on Venus in around 1966.

7) Venus once had an abundance of water:

The thick clouds of sulphuric acid enveloping Venus make it difficult to observe its surface from outside its atmosphere. However, scientists were able to see the surface in 1960 with the help of radio mapping. They discovered that Venus was once full of water. 

8) Climatic pressure on Venus is over 92 times higher than the Earth’s:

According to various experts, the pressure felt on Venus’ surface is quite similar to underwater pressure. Hence, no living being can survive there.

9) The Maya were the first civilisation that discovered the presence of Venus:

The people of Maya offered various human sacrifices to Venus and the Sun. Venus was the ultimate patron planet for Mayans.

10) Humans cannot visit Venus:

Certain areas of the planet have mild temperatures. Moreover, Venus’ overall high temperatures heat electronics in spacecraft so none of the humans can ever visit it.

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