Venus Revealed: A New Look Below the Clouds of Our Mysterious Twin Planet

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Basic Books, 1998 - Science - 355 pages
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Early robot probes sent by Russian and American scientists had given us some tantalizing but fragmentary glimpses of the surface and atmosphere, hinting at some of the most exotic conditions seen in the solar system. Magellan showed a planet full of beautiful landscapes, some eerily familiar and some completely unexpected - a world of active volcanoes, shining mountains, and even river valleys carved by torrents of flowing lava. Venus may once have had a wet, temperate, comfortable climate, much like Earth's. What happened to turn it into a hostile, burning, acid world? Our twin has important tales to tell us regarding several of Earth's most pressing environmental problems, including ozone destruction, global warming, and acid rain. In Venus Revealed, David Grinspoon makes a compelling case for comparative planetology as an important tool for gaining knowledge that is vital for our long-term survival on our own planet. He re-examines the uniqueness of our own Earth in light of the recent Magellan findings, while also raising the provocative questions: Did a runaway greenhouse effect transform Venus into the burning oven she is today? By treating Venus as a "controlled experiment, " what can we learn from her that will help us survive on Earth? Grinspoon tackles these and other long-debated questions while explaining the incredible scientific advances made possible by the Magellan space probe.

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Venus revealed: a new look below the clouds of our mysterious twin planet

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Perhaps outshone of late by headline-grabbers like Mars and Jupiter, our sister planet seems ovedue for some attention. Grinspoon (astrophysical sciences, Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, and a principal ... Read full review


Goddess at the Edge of Night I
Earths Twin
Descent into Hell
Sizing Up the Planets
Magellan and the Rediscovery of Venus
A Barren World?

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About the author (1998)

David Harry Grinspoon is assistant professor of astrophysical and planetary sciences at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Since 1990, Professor Grinspoon has studied Venus as a Principal Investigator for NASA's Planetary Atmospheres and Venus Data Analysis Program. He lives in Denver.

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