Here we examine how our knowledge of present day Venus can inform terrestrial exoplanetary science and how exoplanetary science can inform our study of Venus. In a superficial way the contrasts in knowledge appear stark. We have been looking at Venus for millennia and studying it via telescopic observations for centuries. Spacecraft observations began with Mariner 2 in 1962 when we confirmed that Venus was a hothouse planet, rather than the tropical paradise science fiction pictured. As long as our level of exploration and understanding of Venus remains far below that of Mars, major questions will endure. On the other hand, exoplanetary science has grown leaps and bounds since the discovery of Pegasus 51b in 1995, not too long after the golden years of Venus spacecraft missions came to an end with the Magellan Mission in 1994. Multi-million to billion dollar/euro exoplanet focused spacecraft missions such as JWST, and its successors will be flown in the coming decades. At the same time, excitement about Venus exploration is blooming again with a number of confirmed and proposed missions in the coming decades from India, Russia, Japan, the European Space Agency (ESA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Here we review what is known and what we may discover tomorrow in complementary studies of Venus and its exoplanetary cousins.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Space Science Reviews|
|State||Published - Feb 2023|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science