Many people will know Venus as the morning or evening star; or rather, these terms have frequently been used in conjunction with the planet since ancient times. Of all the terrestrial bodies in the heavens, Venus has always fascinated astronomers because it is similar to Earth in so many ways. And that is just one among many facts that make it such a curious planet. Here’s another 17 interesting facts about Venus
Venus is the second planet from the Sun. If you don’t count the Sun and the Moon, it is also the brightest and most visible celestial body from the vantage point of Earth.
It has a diameter of 12,000 km and a mass of 4.87×1024 kg.
Venus was the Roman goddess of Love and Beauty. This planet was named after her.
For a time, the Romans thought that Venus was one of just four planets.
The similarities between Earth and Venus in terms of factors like volume, size, mass, and density are so stark that scientists have taken to calling them twin planets. The comparisons between the two are further encouraged by the fact that, of all the planets in the solar system, Venus’ orbit is the closest to the earth.
Astronomers once thought that the conditions on Venus might be favourable for life to thrive. But NASA‘s planetary missions eventually determined that Venus was surrounded by a cloud consisting of sulfuric acid and sulfur dioxide.
The cloud surrounding Venus is so dense that it reflects 60% of all the sunlight that comes its way. It is also because of this cloud that Venus has attained the status of the hottest planet in the solar system. The planet’s surface is 462 Degrees Celsius.
The planet’s atmospheric pressure is 92 times greater than the earth’s. This is why it doesn’t have small craters. Any small asteroids that would normally cause these craters are crushed when they enter the atmosphere.
Venus’ surface is an estimated 400 million years old.
Interesting Venus facts
It takes Venus 243 Earth days to complete one rotation on its axis. As a result, it has the longest days in the galaxy. On the other hand, it takes 225 earth days to orbit the Sun.
Besides Mercury, Venus is the only other planet in the solar system that has neither a moon nor rings. No one is certain why this is the case, but it can be assumed it is because of low levels of gravity on these planets.
Every other planet in the Solar System is spinning counter-clockwise. Besides Uranus, Venus is the only planet spinning clockwise. Scientists believe that its rotation is the result of a collision it had in the past.
It takes sunlight six minutes to reach Venus. This encourages even more comparisons with the Earth. Sunlight reaches the earth in 8 minutes.
There are no seasons on Venus and its surface doesn’t experience temperature variations.
Venus has more volcanoes than any other planet in the solar system.
Besides Mercury, Venus is the only other planet in the solar system that can be seen from earth as it crosses in front of the sun.
Because it is so bright, people were already plotting the motions of Venus by the second Millennium BC. However, no one knows for certain who discovered it.
Do you have any fun or interesting facts about Venus you’d like to share with us? Let us know in the comments section below!