NASA Climate Model Suggests Ancient Venus May Have Been Habitable

Posted: Aug 12 2016, 5:50am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 12 2016, 6:22am CDT, in Latest Science News


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Early Venus May Have Been Habitable
Observations suggest Venus may have had water oceans in its distant past. A land-ocean pattern like that above was used in a climate model to show how storm clouds could have shielded ancient Venus from strong sunlight and made the planet habitable. Credits: NASA
  • NASA Climate Model Suggests Ancient Venus May Have Been Habitable

It is being said that the planet Venus may have supported life forms once upon a time.

Venus is a vicious planet of heat and scorching temperatures today. It is a virtual hell. The thick atmosphere of carbon dioxide is 90% more dense than our planet earth. There is little if any sign of water vapor on Venus.

The surface temperature reaches 864 degrees Fahrenheit. Thus the very thought that this sweltering world may harbor life is a far-out notion. Yet scientists and astronomers have found to their surprise that this may have once been the case.

There may indeed have been shallow water pools on Venus. The atmosphere could also have been capable of sustaining life. This seems bizarre and preposterous today yet it is the truth.

Scientists busy doing their work at NASA’s GISS have built a model that supports this thesis. Venus may actually have had conditions once that were strikingly similar in their patterns to the situation we find on earth today.

The rotational axis speed of a planet determines its habitable nature. Whether it is capable of supporting life or not is the gist of the matter.

Venus has a slow rotational rate. A day of Venus is equivalent to 117 days on earth. The rotation was thought to have been due to the thick atmosphere.

The latest research has shown that on the contrary a thin earth-like atmosphere may have resulted in the selfsame slow rotational rate. The early atmosphere of Venus may thus have been similar to the earth’s climate.

The temperatures must have been moderate too way back than. Thus the climate of Venus could actually have been habitable some 715 million years ago.

While Venus was probably drier than earth, it had water and geographic contrasts that allowed life to flourish. The sun was also a more youthful star way back than. It was 30% dimmer than it is today.

The planet’s rotational speed was such that half of it remained facing towards or away from the sun which resulted in unique conditions. These matched the earth during the nascent phases of Venus.

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