Thursday, January 22, 2009
Venus Possibly Had Continents and Oceans.
A look at data gathered by the Galileo spacecraft in year 1990 reveals that Venus at one time might have been habitable, with evidence of past continents & oceans. In a flyby of Venus on the spacecraft's journey to Jupiter, a near- infrared mapping instrument detected signatures which the researchers have interpreted as granite. An international team led by planetary scientist George Hashimoto, at Okayama University, Japan, found that Venus's highland regions emitted less infrared radiation than its lowlands. One interpretation of this dichotomy,says the team's new paper, is that the highlands are composed largely of ' felsic ' rocks, particularly granite. Granite, which on Earth is found in continental crust , requires water for its formation.