HomeAstronomyVenus balloon prototype notches test flights over desert

Venus balloon prototype notches test flights over desert

A prototype for a balloon that could one day cruise through the clouds of Venus, has aced two test flights above Nevada’s Black Rock Desert.

Venus‘ reputation is a formidable one, that of a world of burning heat, crushing air pressure and insufferable carbon dioxide. Yet the environment 4,000 feet (1,200 meters) above Black Rock Desert isn’t too dissimilar to what one may find in Venus’ atmosphere between 30 and 40 miles (50 to 60 kilometers) above the ground. At this altitude on Venus, the temperature ranges from 32 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit (0 to 65 degrees Celsius), while the air density is about the same as on Earth. All in all it’s really quite clement. It is these conditions that have led to speculation that microbial life could survive in Venus’ clouds.

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