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Second International Colloquium on Venus

25 February 1996

With the demise of the Pioneer Venus Orbiter in October 1992, the Galileo Venus flyby in February 1990, and the final orbit of Magellan in October 1994, we find ourselves at the culmination of a great deal of exciting Venus reconnaissance and exploration. The resulting scientific studies are unprecedented in their detail for any planet except the Earth. This special issue is motivated by our need to reevaluate our initial assessment of Venus in light of these and other spacecraft missions and ground-based campaigns conducted over the past 30 years.

Magellan at Venus

25 October 1992
Magellan started mapping the planet Venus on September 15, 1990, and after one cycle (one Venus day or 243 Earth days) had mapped 84% of the planet's surface. This returned an image data volume greater than all past planetary missions combined.

Venus Express: Results of the Nominal Mission

1 September 2009
More than 25 spacecraft from the United States and the Soviet Union visited Venus in the 20th century, but in spite of the many successful measurements they made, a great number of fundamental problems in the physics of the planet remained unsolved [Taylor, 2006; Titov et al., 2006]. In particular, a systematic and long-term survey of the atmosphere was missing, and most aspects of atmospheric behavior remained puzzling. After the Magellan radar mapping mission ended in 1994, there followed a hiatus of more than a decade in Venus research, until the European Space Agency took up the challenge and sent its own spacecraft to our planetary neighbor.

Exploring Venus as a Terrestrial Planet

1 April 2007
Past space missions to Venus, including the Soviet Veneras, Pioneer Venus, and Magellan, have provided a wealth of information about this planet's enigmatic surface and atmosphere but left many fundamental questions unanswered. This special section explores some of the open questions. The papers are drawn from contributions to the AGU Chapman Conference on “Exploring Venus as a Terrestrial Planet,” held in Key Largo, Florida, in February 2006. Topics include Venus surface, atmosphere, ionosphere, and space weather. The authors address resurfacing, volcanism, and atmospheric composition and dynamics, demonstrating the variety of processes seen on our sister planet.