There Could Have Been Life On Venus!

Was Venus once a tropical oasis?Did it once have LIFE?Well, if it did, it doesn’t any more because
it’s a HELLHOLE. Hello
fellow terrestrial lifeforms!Trace here for DNews and I want you to consider
Venus. Apparently that nasty, hot and toxic world
is Earth’s “twin”, its EVIL twin. Venus is around 80% the mass of Earth. Earth and Venus have similar orbits and are
likely made of similar materials. In fact, Venus may have been once surprisingly
Earth-like!It sits on the inner edge of our solar system’s
habitable zone and could have even been averitable oasis!It’s even thought that Venus could have once
had oceans!But today Venus has an atmosphere that crushes
everything on its surface with about 90 timesmore pressure we experience here. It’s so hot that lead will melt. It’s a planet where the greenhouse effect
has gone into overdrive and probably is thelast place in the solar system you’d consider
for your next vacay. See, something catastrophic happened to the
planet’s atmosphere, causing it to turninto a swirling hot mess and, as Venus receives
around double the solar energy of Earth, thewater content in its atmosphere was eventually
broken down through a process called photodissociation. Today, the planet is bone dry. But again, we think it wasn’t always this
way. In the journal Geophysical Research Letters,
scientists used 3-D models of Venus and simulatedhow its atmosphere would evolve if the planet
had an ocean containing 10% the volume ofour oceans on Earth. What they found was that because of Venus’
super slow rotation rate and the fact
our sun was cooler in the past, the planetwould have actually been pretty habitable
for a very long period of time — possiblyfor billions of years!This is even considering the fact that our
sun got hotter as it got older. In fact, this research says Venus could have
been a habitable world as recently as 700million years ago. 12, 13That’s not that much time. This is surprising because until now, it had
been assumed that Venus’ closer orbit aroundthe sun would have caused atmospheric temperatures
to soar and any oceans to boil away billionsof years ago. What they wanted to find out was how young
Venus regulated its temperature. And interestingly, to do this, researchers
used the same models we use today to simulatethe effects of human-driven climate change. These models predict that water vapor forming
clouds in Venus’ atmosphere would have preventedthe sun’s extreme heat from driving atmospheric
temperatures too high, allowing the planetto remain very Earth-like for billions of
years12. And when you combine habitable temperatures
with liquid water and billions of years, youget the possibility of the evolution of life!Sadly, we may never know if Venus once possessed
life, as it’s currently almost impossiblefor us to land a robot on the surface and
expect it not to melt. Though we have had landers there before, none
have lasted for longer than a couple of hours. But this research shows that planets found
around other stars with orbits that were onceconsidered “too hot” to be habitable,
may in fact have atmospheres cool and stableenough for life to take hold. This is awesome and may increase the number
of potentially habitable worlds in our galaxy!Guys, if you love DNews in English — gracias
por tu apoyo!Now, we’ve got a new sister show, “DNews en
Español” — It’s DNews, but in Spanish!If you like space, but want it to be more
espace: ¿Qué pasa si te traga un agujeronegro?Check it out here. Venus might sound pretty crappy for life,
but we’ve found a possibly more habitableworld on our galactic doorstep — welcome
to Proxima b:What do you guys think?Would you rather go to Venus or Mars?

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