Venus is the second planet from Sun, after Mercury. It gets its name from the Roman Goddess of beauty and love, and interestingly is the only planet that is named after a female. It is named after the Goddess, perhaps due to its immense brightness. In the earlier days Venus was considered to be two different stars – one which was seen early in the morning and the other seen after sunset.
How Was Venus Formed
Scientists believe that around 4.6 billion years ago, our solar system was composed of a gas and dust cloud, called solar nebula. When gravity collapsed, the material in this cloud started spinning. This formed the sun which is now in the center. With the formation of sun, the rest of the material started to clump up. Very small particles were bound together by a large force of gravity, forming larger particles. All lighter elements were blown away by the wind which left rocky and heavier materials to make smaller worlds like Venus. The rocky section was formed first and then its gravity started capturing lighter elements that made its atmosphere.
Atmosphere of Venus
Just after its formation, Venus might have had an atmosphere quite like Earth now. Venus is undoubtedly the hottest planet, though it is not closest to sun. It has dense traps of atmosphere that confines the heat. Venus temperature reaches as much as 465 degree C, that is more than the melting temperature of lead. The planet is said to have a hellish atmosphere, mainly clouds of sulphuric acid and carbon dioxide. Very little traces of water have been found in the atmosphere. The clouds of the planet are known to produce lightening, much like the clouds present on Earth.
Climate of Venus
Scientists have found that clouds present in the topmost layer of the planet, move around the planet, every 4 days and are propelled by hurricane force winds that travel at a speed of 224 mph. The winds in the surface of the planet are slower and move at a speed of a few miles in an hour.
Interesting Facts about Venus
- The surface of this planet is extremely dry due to its extremes in temperature. It has flat plains, depressions and lots of highland regions.
- One day in the planet is of duration of 243 earth days. The planet orbits the sun in 225 days.
- Venus is so bright that it can be seen even during day time, if the sky is clear. Only the moon is brighter than Venus in the solar system.
- Venus is said to be the sister planet of Earth. Venus has 81.5% of the mass of Earth. Earth and Venus both have a crust, molten mantle and central core.
- Venus has retrograde rotation which means it rotates on its orbit counter-clockwise. This explains the reason of its collision with an asteroid in the past.
- The planet has no natural satellites.
- Venus is known as the evening star and morning star.