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The Evening Star, The Morning Star

Second Planet of the Solar System

Proper NameVenus
Orbital Period224.70 days
Distance from the SunSemi-Major Axis: 108,208,930 km (0.72 AU)
Perihelion: 107,476,139 km (0.72 AU)
Aphelion: 108,941,721 km (0.73 AU)
Rotation Period243 days, 0 hours, 32 minutes
Diameter12,103 km
Mean Surface Temperature737 K (464°C)
Parent starThe Sun, yellow dwarf
Other planets in this systemMercury, terrestrial planet
Earth, terrestrial planet
Mars, terrestrial planet
Jupiter, gas giant
Saturn, gas giant
Uranus, ice giant
Neptune, ice giant
Numerous dwarf planets, asteroids and other bodies
NotesThe second planet of the Solar System from the Sun, Venus shines as the brighest object in the sky after the Sun and Moon. Its surface is pemanently obscured by an unbroken layer of sulphur dioxide clouds.
Venus as the Morning Star

Because Venus' orbit is closer to the Sun than the Earth's, it never appears far from the Sun in the Earth's sky. This effect means that the brilliant planet is most often seen in the hours before dawn, or after sunset, giving it the names of Morning and Evening Star.

Size Comparison of Venus

Venus' diameter of 12,070km makes it the second largest of the terrestrial planets, at around 95% the size of Earth.

A beautiful and brilliant sight in the evening or morning sky, Venus is actually an inhospitable world, with 'rain' composed of sulphuric acid, and a surface temperature of more than 400°C.

The Surface of Venus

A pleasant day on Venus: the landscape bakes in temperatures hot enough to melt tin. Nearby, stirred by the wind,a lake of sulphuric acid froths.


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