Check Out Venus By Day and Night in a Single Image

By on June 5, 2014

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Image by ESA/VIRTIS/INAF-IASF/Obs. de Paris-LESIA

The above image of the planet Venus in both night and day. It was taken with the Ultraviolet/Visible/Near-Infrared spectrometer (VIRTIS) on board ESA’s Venus Express spacecraft. And it is beautiful.

The visible light images show the radiation that gets reflected by the planet’s atmosphere; the infrared part shows the thermal radiation bubbling up from sub-atmospheric depths.

ESA explains in a little more detail:

Venus Express can resolve these structures by use (for the first time from orbit) of the so so-called ‘infrared windows’ present in the atmosphere of Venus. In fact, if observed at certain wavelengths, it is possible to detect thermal radiation leaking from the deepest atmospheric layers, revealing what lies beneath the dense cloud curtain situated at about 60 kilometres altitude.

About Darth Sarah

Sarah is a journalist and an artist who lives in the city. She loves movies and television. She reads early and often. She also secretly hopes the Doctor will come and take her away, though she realizes he probably already has a dedicated companion at the moment. Sarah also helps out over at BSCkids.com, Optionated.com and our other sites!

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