What is the News? European Space Agency(ESA) has announced a new mission with the name EnVision mission.
About EnVision Mission:
- EnVision is a European Space Agency(ESA)-led mission. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is working as a contributor.
- Aim: The mission will carry instruments to study the Venus atmosphere and surface. Also, to monitor trace gases in the atmosphere, and analyze the surface composition of Venus.
- Launch Year: The mission is likely to be launched sometime in the 2030s. It will be launched on an Ariane 6 rocket. The rocket will take about 15 months to reach Venus and will take 16 more months to achieve orbit circularization.
Other Venus Missions:
- Venus Express(2005-2014): It is an ESA-led mission to Venus that focussed on atmospheric research and pointed to volcanic hotspots on the planet’s surface.
- Akatsuki spacecraft: It is a Japanese Spacecraft that has been studying the planet’s atmosphere since 2015.
- DAVINCI+ and VERITAS Mission: These are two robotic missions announced by NASA to Venus. It will be launched between 2028-2030.
- Shukrayaan-1: It is a proposed mission of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to Venus. It aims to study the surface and atmosphere of Venus. It is expected to be launched in 2023.
- Venus is the second-brightest object in the sky after the moon.
- It appears bright because of its thick cloud cover that reflects and scatters light.
Why study Venus?
- To understand how Earth and Venus evolved so differently from each other. Whereas both planets are, roughly, of the same size and composition.
- To understand more about the Venus thick cloud cover and the volcanoes on its surface.
- To understand about the existence of life on Venus in its distant past and the possibility that life may exist in the top layers of its clouds where temperatures are less extreme.
- In 2020, a team of scientists reported that they had found phosphine gas in the atmosphere of Venus that triggered excitement in the scientific community that some life forms might be supported by the planet.
Source: Indian Express