European mission reports from Venus

  title={European mission reports from Venus},
  author={Eric Hand},
  • E. Hand
  • Published 27 November 2007
  • Physics
  • Nature
Venus Express, the first European mission to Venus, finds evidence for past oceans. 


The structure of Venus’ middle atmosphere and ionosphere
The fine structure in temperatures at upper cloud-deck altitudes is determined, a distinct day–night temperature difference in the southern middle atmosphere is detected, and day-to-day changes in Venus’ ionosphere are tracked.
Morphology and dynamics of the upper cloud layer of Venus
The convective cells in the vicinity of the subsolar point are much smaller than previously inferred, which is interpreted as indicating that they are confined to the upper cloud layer, contrary to previous conclusions, but consistent with more recent study.
South-polar features on Venus similar to those near the north pole
Observations of Venus’ south-polar region are reported, where clouds with morphology much like those around the north pole, but rotating somewhat faster than the northern dipole are seen.
Constraint and turnover in sex-biased gene expression in the genus Drosophila
It is shown that averaged sex-biased expression changes accumulate monotonically over time within the Drosophila genus, and different genes contribute to expression variance within species groups compared to between groups, indicating that gene formation and extinction may play a significant part in species differences.
A dynamic upper atmosphere of Venus as revealed by VIRTIS on Venus Express
Measurements of day-side CO2 non-local thermodynamic equilibrium emission and night-side O2 emission of Venus are reported, which are consistent with three-body recombination of oxygen atoms transported from the day side by a global thermospheric sub-solar to anti-s solar circulation, as previously predicted.
The loss of ions from Venus through the plasma wake
Measurements of the atmosphere of Venus show that the dominant escaping ions are O+, He+ and H+.
Lightning on Venus inferred from whistler-mode waves in the ionosphere
Observations of Venus' ionosphere reveal strong, circularly polarized, electromagnetic waves with frequencies near 100 Hz that have the expected properties of whistler-mode signals generated by lightning discharges in Venus’ clouds.
A warm layer in Venus' cryosphere and high-altitude measurements of HF, HCl, H2O and HDO
The detection of an extensive layer of warm air at altitudes 90–120 km on the night side of Venus that is interpreted as the result of adiabatic heating during air subsidence is reported.