Venus melted the greenhouse effect

17.03.2004

17.03.2004


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Hellish inferno on Venus could appear much later than previously thought, scientists. If this is true, then the mild climate could be as much as two billion years after the birth of the planet — and this is sufficient time for the development of life. Venus is about the size of Earth. Today, its atmosphere can melt lead, and from sulphurous clouds, the sun is completely obscured, constantly dripping concentrated sulfuric acid. But once on the planet was the Earth's climate and virtually oceans full of water. Experts agree that this period has ended after Venus lost its water as a result of the strongest greenhouse effect. The only question is when it happened.

• It now looks like the surface of Venus. Once upon a time there was seething life?

Until recently, scientists have followed Jeffrey Kargelom of the U.S. Geological Survey of the opinion that this happened about four billion years ago — just after 600 million years after the solar system. New work by David Grinspoon of the Southwest Research Institute (USA) suggests that large-scale change happened much later. He stressed that Kargel not take into account the impact of clouds on the atmosphere of the planet.

Clouds reflect sunlight back into space, cooling the surface. Preliminary calculations Grinspoon show that the impact could be very significant — with them the atmosphere by about one hundred degrees cooler than without them. This may mean that a comfortable life for temperature and humidity could exist on Venus at least two billion years. It may also mean that the global change of the lithosphere, which occurred about 700 million years ago, when the entire surface of Venus is melted and retooled, could be a continuation of the same greenhouse effect, which drained the planet.

According to Grinspoon, the evaporation of water could completely stop tectonic movement, and with it disappeared the most effective ways of getting rid of internal heat. As a result, it can accumulate until triggered until melting of the entire cortex. So if this was the life of the planet and all traces of it for a long time in the literal sense of the word burned or evaporated …

15.03.2004

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