NASA launches two new missions in a "lost habitable world" - BGR

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NASA and other space agencies around the world have recently focused their attention on Mars. This makes sense, since Mars is the most Earth-like planet, and it is the only planet that, to our knowledge, has had the best chance of hosting life at some point in its past. Venus, which today is a toxic hellish landscape with temperatures exceeding 1 degrees Fahrenheit and a thick atmosphere that would suffocate us in the blink of an eye, is a rocky world like Earth and Mars, but it certainly is not compatible with life as we know it. Where has he gone? That's what NASA wants to know.

Dance a new ad, NASA reveals that it has selected two new missions that will head to Venus to study its atmosphere and geology. The missions - called DAVINCI + and VERITAS - aim to answer some of the biggest questions about Earth's other neighbor and perhaps even shed light on how Earth was lucky enough to be compatible with it. life.

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The two missions are similar in that they will both feature orbiters with state-of-the-art equipment and instruments. However, they will study very different aspects of the planet while also helping scientists understand how the Venus we see today was born.

DAVINCI + - short for Deep Atmospheric Venus Investigation of Noble gas, Chemistry, and Imaging - will study the planet's atmosphere, which is one of the main reasons the conditions on its surface are so intense. Mainly composed of carbon dioxide, the atmosphere could offer clues to what the planet looked like in the distant past. The mission will also seek to reveal if Venus ever had an ocean.

VERITAS - Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR, Topography, and Spectroscopy - will scan the planet's surface and produce maps and 3D models of the rocky world under the thick clouds. The orbiter will be equipped with instruments capable of determining what type of rock covers the planet's surface and studying ongoing geological processes, including active volcanoes and plate tectonics.

"We are re-energizing our planetary science program with intense exploration of a world that NASA has not visited for over 30 years," NASA Associate Administrator Thomas Zurbuchen said in a statement. “Using cutting-edge technologies that NASA has developed and refined over many years of technology missions and programs, we are ushering in a new decade of Venus to understand how an Earth-like planet can become a greenhouse. Our goals are deep. It's not just about understanding the evolution of planets and habitability in our own solar system, but expanding beyond those boundaries to exoplanets, an exciting and emerging area of ​​research for the world. NASA. "

The missions do not yet have firm launch dates, but are expected to launch skyward between 2028 and 2030.

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This article appeared first (in English) on https://bgr.com/science/roits-missions-nasa-future-5929383/

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