Venus : The Hottest Planet
Despite being the second planet close to the Sun, Venus has crowned as the hottest planet in the solar system. Known as twin’s sister to our home planet Earth, Venus got its name from the Roman goddess of love and beauty, the only planet named after a female. In Malay, Venus is known as “Bintang Kejora” (Bintang is a star in English), often mistaken as a star-the evening star and the morning star- where it can be seen after sunset or before sunrise, shining bright like a star.
Located about 108 million kilometers away from the Sun, the average temperature of Venus is about 465 degrees Celsius hot enough to melt lead. This occurs due to the dense atmosphere of the planet that traps heat called the greenhouse effect. Venus’s atmosphere contains mostly carbon dioxide with clouds of sulphuric acid and traces of water. The atmosphere is heavier than other planets, and if you stay at the Venus, you would experience about 90 times surface pressure than at the Earth.
The surface of Venus is extremely dry, consist of mountains, valleys, and thousands of volcanoes. There is no water on the surface because its heat would cause any water to boil away. The highest mountain on Venus, Maxwell Montes, is 8.8 kilometers high, similar to Mount Everest on Earth. It has two large highland areas which are Isthar Terra in the north polar region and Aphrodite Terra in the equator, extending for almost 10,000 kilometers. On Venus’s surface, there are lots of craters and none smaller than 1.5 to 2 kilometers big. Small meteoroids burned in the atmosphere and only bigger meteoroids survive and fall on the planet’s surface.
One day in Venus is equal to 243 Earth days, however, one year in Venus equals 225 Earth days, meaning that a day longer than a year in Venus. The Sun rises from the west and set in the east of the planet as the planet rotates in the opposite direction to the Earth’s rotation and most of the solar system’s planets. It has the most circular orbit with axis tilt at 3 degrees, making it spins nearly upright and does not experience seasons.
Venus does not have any moon and ring orbiting around it. NASA’s Magellan launched on May 4, 1989, was the first Venusian orbiter, had made the first map of Venus’s surface and the planet’s gravity field. Till now, more than 40 spacecraft had explored Venus. The first spacecraft landed on Venus’s surface was the Soviet Union’s Venera 7 in December 1970 and had survived on the planet for less than half an hour. On March 1, 1982, another Soviet mission, Venera 13 landed on Venus and successfully snapped the first colored picture of the planet from its surface.
Written by : Ummu Soleha Bt Jamaludin
Eksekutif Pelatih Dakwah MAINS,2019