This article is from WeChat official account:Love Faner (ID: ifanr), author: Lee extraordinary, from the title figure: the movie “Prometheus”

In the past few decades, humans have not stopped exploring extraterrestrial civilizations, trying to prove that we are not alone in this universe.

However, many people have looked for him a thousand times, Extraterrestrial life may actually be on the nearest planet-Venus.

Last night, a video from the Royal Astronomical Society expected to be released on September 14 was exposed in advance. An international astronomy research team discovered the presence of phosphine in the atmosphere of Venus(PH3), this means that there may be life on Venus.

At present, human beings have not discovered life on any planet other than the earth. This may be the first time in human history to find evidence of life outside the earth.

1. Scientists have found evidence of life on Venus, and the earth may not be alone

When we first discovered the presence of phosphine in the spectrum of Venus, we were shocked!

This research team is funded by MITAstronomers from the College, University of Manchester and Cardiff University, they discovered the phosphine in the atmosphere of Venus through the Maxwell Telescope in Hawaii (JCMT). The Chilean Atacama Large Millimeter/Submillimeter Array (ALMA) radio telescope was used for further confirmation.

Maxwell Telescope

At present, the results of this research have been published in the academic journal “Natural Astronomy”, which has aroused great attention from the astronomy and aviation fields. Many people in the industry are excited about this discovery.

NASA(National Aeronautics and Space Administration) Director Jim Bridenstine said on Twitter:

The discovery of phosphine, a by-product of anaerobic organisms, is the most important development in the discovery of evidence for extraterrestrial life. About 10 years ago, NASA discovered microorganisms in the upper atmosphere at 120,000 feet of the earth. Now is the time to give priority to Venus.

Laura McKemmish, a spectrographer at the University of New South Wales, said:

This research marks the beginning of a new era in the search for extraterrestrial life.

Phosphine is a highly toxic gas. Why is the discovery of phosphine on Venus considered as possible evidence of life?

This is because phosphine is usually produced in the metabolism of anaerobic organisms, and is generally not produced in non-living natural activities.

Picture from: The Verge

But it is not absolute. On the earth, natural phenomena such as volcanic activity, meteorites, and lightning may produce a certain amount of phosphine, but the amount is very small. The most important source of phosphine in the earth’s atmosphere, except for anaerobic biological metabolism, is human industrial production, which is all related to life activities.

Professor Clara Sousa-Silva, a molecular astrophysicist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who participated in this research, also pointed out in a paper last year that Phosphine is easily consumed by chemical reactions, so it must be continuously produced in large quantities. Achieve an observable amount.

The concentration of phosphine discovered by researchers in the atmosphere of Venus is 20 parts per billion, which is 10 to 1 million times the concentration of phosphine in the earth’s atmosphere. Therefore, Clara Sousa-Silva believes that the phosphine on Venus is likely to come from life activities.

As far as our current understanding of Venus is concerned, the most reasonable solution to the discovery of phosphineShi should be a living existence, although this sounds a little unbelievable.

According to this statement, does this mean that Venus must have life?

Not really.

The British Royal Astronomy pointed out that although there is no more reasonable explanation than the existence of life on Venus. However, it cannot be said that there must be life on Venus, because it is not ruled out that there are other non-biological ways to generate phosphine, which requires further research.

Picture from: NBC News

Some people speculate that the phosphine found on Venus may have been left by the Venus probe launched by humans in the 1960s and 1980s, but researchers believe that this is not enough to produce such a large amount of phosphine. This possibility is basically ruled out.

The most direct way to prove that there is life on Venus is of course to send a probe to Venus to sample, but this is not easy.

2. How did the “twin” of the earth become a “hell planet”?

Venus has always been considered the “twin” of the Earth because of its size, density, gravity, and internal structure, which is the closest to the Earth in the solar system, and is closer to the Earth than Mars.

Only considering these factors, Venus is the best choice for humans to immigrate to aliens. Then why do all countries finally set their sights on Mars?

Because Venus can be said to be a “Hell Planet” with no return.

The surface temperature of Venus is about 465-485 degrees Celsius. This temperature can melt lead and directly cook people.

Venus is covered by a thick cloud of sulfuric acid, and sunlight is difficult to penetrate, only endless night.

The CO2 concentration here is as high as 95.6%. You must know that the earth’s carbon dioxide concentration is only 0.04%

The wind speed here is as high as 350 kilometers per hour, which is stronger than the magnitude 17 typhoon on earth.

The atmospheric pressure on the surface of Venus is 92 times that of the earth, which is equivalent to the pressure of 1,000 meters on the bottom of the earth, or the pressure of a person walking on the road carrying a weight of 47 tons.

Venus concept map.

In such harsh conditions, let alone the existence of life, it is extremely difficult for aerial probes to enter Venus.

From the 1960s to the 1980s, the United States and the Soviet Union, which were still in the Cold War, began to compete with Venus.

In 1962, NASA’s Mariner 2 successfully passed Venus and became the first space probe to successfully approach other planets. The data sent back allowed scientists to calculate the surface temperature of Venus for the first time.

Sailor 2

The Soviet Union has been more active in exploring Venus, launching 28 probes to Mars back and forth, 9 of which successfully landed on Venus, but the longest one only persisted in working for 110 minutes.

The Soviet Union “Venus 9” probe successfully landed on the surface of Venus for the first time (concept picture)

The last probe to Venus was the Magellan in 1989. Since then, humans have not approached this planet for more than 30 years.

Actually, this “hell planet” was once a habitable planet like the earth.

NASA Goddard Institute for Space Research (GISS) based on the Venus probe data modeling found that after the formation of Venus The temperature is in a livable state of 20-50℃ for 3 billion years, and there are rivers, oceans and diverse life.

Venus was once a blue planet. Picture from: NASA

If it weren’t for 700 to 750 million years ago because of an event that caused a sharp rise in carbon dioxide concentration and warming the climate, now Venus may be another earth, and some scholars even believe that the earth’s civilization originated from Venus.

With the discovery of evidence of life on Venus, humans will also have greater motivation to return to Venus. In fact, at the beginning of this year, NASA announced a new round of Venus exploration projects DAVINCI+ and VERITAS.

VERITAS spacecraft concept map. Image source: NASA / JPL-Caltech

The DAVINCI+ project will map the surface rock types of Venus and image the surface, while VERITAS aims to map the surface of Venus and understand why its evolution is so different from that of the earth by studying the geology of Venus.

Aeronautical science blogger@Space Craft, believes that this discovery is like “paving the way for a new generation of NASA and ESA Venus probe series platforms.”

In the words of Suzanne Smrekar, a researcher at NASA’s California Jet Propulsion Laboratory, “We are exploring a world that was originally livable but lost.”

3. Will the earth be the next Venus?