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Welcome to The Guardian of Worlds, pull up a seat and prepare to enter different worlds and ages. From the past, to the present, and the future. This is the place where I''l place some of the stuff I am thinking of, as well as news items & stories that are interesting. And a few other odds and ends.

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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Personal Thoughts - The Terraforming of Venus

Note: About half of this was written two months ago, 3/12/2010.

This isn't related to any of my writings, but it is a small related to one I read the other day the idea of terraforming Venus, first I'm going to start with some Venusian facts,
assuming you haven’t already looked it up, it’s 243 Earth days long, that’s 5,832 hours long. Venus is also 25% closer to the sun, and Venus is still volcanically active, more then here on Earth. And then there is the famous clouds we should all know about, which has become the whole point of the Greenhouse Effect argument. The problem is Venus is Venus, and Earth is Earth, Earth has a moon and Venus doesn’t, and if the current moon formation theory is correct, the Earth before was a completely different planet. One last thing that is important is Venus’s retrograde rotation, what this means is Venus rotates the opposite of Earth, put simply while the Sun sets in the west and rises in the east on Earth on Venus it sets in the east and rises in the west, and as I pointed out earlier its day is 243 Earth days long while its year is only 224.7 Earth days long.

To further explain my point lets look at Mars, now while mars an alien world it has characteristics that are similar to Earth’s, its day is a little over twenty-four hours, it has seasons similar to Earth’s although longer due to Mars’ being farther from the sun then the Earth is by about 50% making its year twice as long. There is so much more I could go into, but I want to get to the next part of this.

Now before I go on I want to point out that terraforming is a technological process that is a long way from being something we can anytime in the near future without some technological breakthrough.

Now on to the problems of terraforming Venus, first is the Venusian day as I pointed out earlier rotationally it is 243 Earth days long, while a solar day is 117 earth days, a solar day is from one sunrise to the next, we’re still looking at a daylight period 58.5 earth days long and that is planet wide not just at the poles. Venus also suffers from a lack of a planetary magnetic field for protection against solar and cosmic radiation. And one last thing that I personally think might be important is how volcanically active Venus might still be, if we were to assume at the moment that Venus is still quite volcanically active this would be a major problem for terraforming Venus, for example there are some 167 giant volcanoes that are over 62 miles across which is about the size of Washington, D.C. Even if you could cool the surface down to an average of 60
degrees it would be problematic if these giant volcanoes active, one would have to find a way to control volcanic activity. Of course most of these problems could be, in theory, solved if the technology level is high enough.

One of the benefits of science fiction is one can think of solutions to problems not yet discovered or not even contemplated at this time.

by The Guardian of Worlds.

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