A scene looking west on January 16, 2015 but with a field stretching up to and beyond the zenith overhead, taking in the Zodiacal Light stretching up to the Pleiades at upper left. Just below the Pleiades is green Comet Lovejoy, with its faint ion tail pointing away from the Sun along the same plane as the Zodiacal Light, as it should. Ion tails always point directly away from the Sun, as they are blown out by the solar wind. Comet Lovejoy was crossing the ecliptic this night, as it heads north in its orbit traveling almost perpendicular to the ecliptic plane. Venus is just above the horizon right of lower centre, while Mars is above it, to the right of the top of the larhge boulder. They, too, like along the ecliptic embdedded in the Zodiacal Light. This is a single image, a 1 minute at f/2.8 and a Canon 6D at ISO 3200. Shot from City of Rocks State Park, New Mexico. It is part of a 360 panorama of the entire sky. (Photo by: Alan Dyer /VW PICS/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
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The Unbelievable Mission To Venus That You Probably Never Heard Of
A few years ago, scientists discovered the production of a chemical called phosphine on Venus, concluding that something alive must produce this excretion on the long-believed inhospitable world. This finding could rewrite our collective understanding of the universe and spark greater efforts to investigate our close neighbor.
Some might be shocked to learn of the Soviet space program’s several missions to the planet’s surface in 1975 and 1982, where they managed to land four of their Venera probes on Venus, capturing and transmitting images back to Earth. These images showed rocky formations appearing in muted yellow hues, similar to something you might find on Earth.
These missions to study Venus often go unnoticed, because the Soviet Union famously buried public acknowledgment of failed missions, making the data difficult to obtain. However, NASA and others have shown a renewed interest in exploring Venus to discover what could be waiting there and what could be learned from the yellow planet.