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    Venus is a living planet – Liberation


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    By scrutinizing pictures taken in the 90s, two American researchers found traces of active volcanism on this “neighbor” of the Earth, distant 40 million kilometers at the closest.

    It is a small bomb that was dropped this Wednesday at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, which is held like every year in the United States. Shocking news like you don’t often see in astronomy: Venus is alive. We already knew that this planet close to the Earth has a young surface – on the scale of geological time –, in places folded and fractured, obviously remodeled by internal movements of volcanism. Planetologists even wondered if there would not still be a little magma bubbling down there. And the proof came today: yes, there are active volcanoes on Venus, erupting and collapsing.

    The discovery was not made possible by a new space exploration mission which would have gone to observe Venus in detail: it has been almost fifteen years since any probe went to visit it. Although close to Earth (40 million kilometers at the closest), the ocher planet is a difficult target for scientific study because it hides under a thick and opaque layer of atmosphere. There are only two ways to know what is happening on the surface of the rocky planet: observe it on radar, to see through the clouds, or land… in an average temperature of 460°C and under pressure of 93 bars (i.e. 93 times the terrestrial pressure at sea level). A hellish environment. Several Soviet machines tried the experiment


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