How long is a day on Venus? Scientists crack mysteries of our closest neighbor

Fundamentals such as how many hours are in a Venusian day provide critical data for understanding the divergent histories of Venus and Earth, UCLA researchers say. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Venus is an enigma. It’s the planet next door and yet reveals little about itself. An opaque blanket of clouds smothers a harsh landscape pelted by acid rain and baked at temperatures that can liquify lead.

Now, new observations from the safety of Earth are lifting the veil on some of Venus’ most basic properties. By repeatedly bouncing radar off the planet’s surface over the last 15 years, a UCLA-led team has pinned down the precise length of a day on Venus, the tilt of its axis and the size of its core. The findings are published today in the journal Nature Astronomy.

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New astronomical survey utilizes the Green Bank Telescope to give clearest view of ionized gas in the Milky Way

The Green Bank Telescope with a dark sky of stars.

Astronomical surveys mapping regions of the Galaxy have been collected and studied for decades. These surveys allow researchers to compare previous data, further characterize objects or images of the sky, and learn more through statistical analysis.  For the National Science Foundation’s Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Diffuse Ionized Gas Survey (GDIGS), researchers took advantage of the power of the GBT, located in Pocahontas County, West Virginia, to better understand the impact of massive stars in the Milky Way.

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West Virginia Students Contact International Space Station LIVE

How would you feel if you could talk to an astronaut, orbiting over 200-miles above you in space?

Friday, May 7th at 8:00 AM EDT, students in rural West Virginia will experience this once in a lifetime opportunity. Green Bank Elementary-Middle School (GBEMS) will be contacting astronaut Mark Vande Hei on the International Space Station (ISS).

Green Bank Elementary Middle School sits in the shadow of the National Science Foundation’s Green Bank Telescope, the world’s largest fully steerable radio telescope. Photo credits NSF/GBO/Jill Malusky.
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Staff volunteer in county wide road clean-up

The Pocahontas County Convention & Visitors Bureau Make It Shine road clean-up campaign is underway with a goal of 125+ miles to be covered.  Motorists in the area should be cautious of people picking up trash next to the roadways and please slow down. This county wide effort will take place over the next two weeks of late April in to May.

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