Photos of Venus, the Mysterious Planet Next Door

The Blistering Surface of Venus

NASA

Although Venus is only the planet second nearest the sun, its dense, toxic atmosphere traps heat in a runaway version of the greenhouse effect that warms up the Earth. As a result, temperatures on Venus reach 870 degrees F (465 degrees C), more than hot enough to melt lead.

Planetary Protection Study Group Mulls Life On Venus

NASA/GSFC

NASA’s Pioneer Venus Orbiter took this false color image of Venus’ clouds during its mission circling the cloudy world from 1979 into 1992. Some scientists have speculated that the planet’s clouds might be a cozy habitat for microbial life.

Surface of Venus by Venera 13

NASA

The right half of the panoramic view of the surface of Venus from the Venera 13 lander.

Was Venus Alive? 'The Signs are Probably There'

NASA/JPL/Galileo

The Galileo spacecraft took this picture of Venus in 1990. It has been filtered and colorized to enhance cloud forms. The sulfuric acid clouds are somewhat similar to fair weather clouds on Earth.

Surface of Venus by Venera 13

NASA

A panoramic view of the surface of Venus from the Venera 13 lander.

View of Venus's South Pole

NASA/JPL/USGS

The hemispheric view of Venus, as revealed by more than a decade of radar investigations culminating in the 1990-1994 Magellan mission, is centered on the South Pole.

Surface of Venus by Venera 13

NASA

The left half of the panoramic view of the surface of Venus from the Venera 13 lander.

Inside Planet Venus

Karl Tate, SPACE.com

Planet Venus explained.

Hot Discovery: Dark Vortex on Venus

ESA/INAF-IASF, Rome, Italy, and Observatoire de Paris, France

Composite, false-color view of Venus south pole captured by VIRTIS 12 April 2006 onboard Venus Express. Credits: ESA/INAF-IASF, Rome, Italy, and Observatoire de Paris, France

Venus' Double Vortex Confirmed in New Animation

ESA/VIRTIS/INAF-IASF/Obs. de Paris-LESIA

These six different infrared images (in false colour) were taken by the Ultraviolet/Visible/Near-Infrared spectrometer (VIRTIS) on board ESA’s Venus Express spacecraft between 12 and 19 April 2006, during the first capture orbit around the planet. Credits: ESA/VIRTIS/INAF-IASF/Obs. de Paris-LESIA

New: Hot Map of Venus

ESA/VIRTIS-VenusX Team

The temperature maps of the Venusian surface shown in this image were built thanks to direct measurements obtained by Venus Express’ VIRTIS instruments (left), compared with surface temperature predictions based on the Magellan topographic data obtained in the early 1990s (right). Credits: ESA/VIRTIS-VenusX Team

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