The scientifically validated theory on the evolution of the solar system and its constituent bodies figures prominently in space research. This will make it possible - within the framework of comparative interplanetary studies - to get a better idea of how the earth came into being and more, predict its future. Planets Mars and Venus are of the utmost interest to us in this respect. Somehow our planetary scientists have had a poor run of luck where the Red Planet, Mars, is concerned. But they have been more fortunate with regard to Venus, the Morning Star, also known as the "Russian" planet. Indeed, our planetologists have amassed a wealth of information on Venus. RAS corresponding member Lev Zeleny, heading the RAS Institute of Space Studies, has told the Russian language scientific and technical journal Polet (Flight) about progress in Venusian studies and what has been accomplished toward unlocking the planet's mystery. Here is an English version of his interview.
Venus is our closest space neighbor. As, moving along its orbit, it passes between the earth and the sun, it comes
closest to us at a distance of about 40 million kilometers. The Morning Star is a bit smaller in mass and size than our globe, and gets as much solar energy.
Cosmogonically, the similarity of the basic features of Earth and Venus is understandable by and large: according to present theories, the planets of the solar system emerged from a primeval nebula condensed from interstellar matter; its solidification (hardening) process caused the greater part (99.9 percent) of the mass to be congregated in the center, where the sun was born. The rest came to be compressed in a compacted disk that took in solid particles of different dimensions. Colliding, they merged into planetary embryos called planetesimals that in time, over hundreds of millions of years, grew into regular planets. This process came to an end about five billion years ago.
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