Venus is the second planet from the Sun, orbiting it every 224.7 Earth days. The planet is named after the Roman goddess of love and beauty. After the Moon, it is the brightest natural object in the night sky, reaching an apparent magnitude of −4.6, bright enough to cast shadows. Because Venus is an inferior planet from Earth, it never appears to venture far from the Sun: its elongation reaches a maximum of 47.8°. Venus reaches its maximum brightness shortly before sunrise or shortly after sunset, for which reason it has been referred to by ancient cultures as the Morning Star or Evening Star.

Venus is classified as a terrestrial planet and is sometimes called Earth's "sister planet" owing to their similar size, gravity, and bulk composition (Venus is both the closest planet to Earth and the planet closest in size to Earth). However, it has been shown to be very different from Earth in other respects. Venus is shrouded by an opaque layer of highly reflective clouds of sulfuric acid, preventing its surface from being seen from space in visible light. It has the densest atmosphere of the four terrestrial planets, consisting mostly of carbon dioxide. The atmospheric pressure at the planet's surface is 92 times that of Earth's. With a mean surface temperature of 735 K (462 °C; 863 °F), Venus is by far the hottest planet in the Solar System. It has no carbon cycle to lock carbon back into rocks and surface features, nor does it seem to have any organic life to absorb it in biomass. Venus may have possessed oceans in the past, but these would have vaporized as the temperature rose due to the runaway greenhouse effect. The water has most probably photodissociated, and, because of the lack of a planetary magnetic field, the free hydrogen has been swept into interplanetary space by the solar wind. Venus's surface is a dry desertscape interspersed with slab-like rocks and periodically refreshed by volcanism.

Read more about VenusPhysical Characteristics, Orbit and Rotation, Observation, In Culture

Other articles related to "venus":

Tannhäuser (opera) - Composition History - The Paris Version
... it could at least make some dramatic sense by representing the sensual world of Venus's realm ... Venus, a role that in the Dresden version was considered a soprano, now calls for a mezzo soprano ... Venus' aria "Geliebter, komm!" was transposed down half a step and was completely altered from "...wonnige Glut durchschwelle dein Herz" ...
Runaway Greenhouse Effect - Venus
... effect involving carbon dioxide and water vapor may have occurred on Venus ... In this scenario, early Venus may have had a global ocean ... On Venus today there is little water vapor in the atmosphere ...
Venus, Florida - Geography
... Venus is located at 27°04′01″N 81°21′25″W / 27.0669°N 81.3569°W / 27.0669 -81.3569Coordinates 27°04′01″N 81°21′25″W / 27.0669°N 81.3569°W ...
March 1961 - March 10, 1961 (Friday)
... The first definite proof that a signal could be sent to Venus and returned to Earth, using radar astronomy, was made by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory ... California at a 2,388 megacycle frequency, traveling 35 million miles to Venus and then back to Earth, in a little more than six minutes ... Signals had been bounced off of Venus before, but never received back clearly enough to be "immediately detectable" ...
Knox Martin - Work
... One of his wall paintings in New York City is the twelve-story mural Venus ... Painted in 1970, Venus is located on the south side of Bayview Correctional Facility at 19th Street and the West Side Highway ... "Traditionally the goddess of love and fertility, Venus represents woman, erotic and supple, but it also conveys Knox Martin's love affair with New York ...

Famous quotes containing the word venus:

    It is no longer a flame hidden in my veins; now it is Venus in all her might fastened to her prey.
    Jean Racine (1639–1699)

    and Venus among the fishes skips and is a she-dolphin
    she is the gay, delighted porpoise sporting with love and the sea
    she is the female tunny-fish, round and happy among the males
    and dense with happy blood, dark rainbow bliss in the sea.
    —D.H. (David Herbert)

    Yet have I fierce affections, and think
    What Venus did with Mars.
    William Shakespeare (1564–1616)