Electric Venus

Historic planetary instability and catastrophe. Evidence for electrical scarring on planets and moons. Electrical events in today's solar system. Electric Earth.

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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby Grey Cloud » Fri Mar 26, 2010 9:03 am

The other thing which confuses me about these images is scale. I can never figure out how large an area I'm looking at.
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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby jjohnson » Fri Mar 26, 2010 9:50 am

In terms of interpretation if nothing else, W. you have made a very interesting and useful discovery. The images pop out much better, as shadow orientation is a very important part of how we "interpret scenes" in our particular eye-brain system. Look at a picture in visual light of craters on the moon, and then rotate it 180 degrees and see if it doesn't look different. There is an orientation at which it really pops out and looks 3-D. Usually the best case is where the image has the shadows 'pointing down' on the paper, or at about a 45 degree angle from the nadir (straight down). I don't know that we are that much different from trilobites or mantises in that regard, despite the structural differences in eyes; I've just learned a little about how we work in that regard.

The visible sunlight reaching the surface of Venus is highly diffused by the cloud cover. It cannot cast shadows with sharp edges becasue the light is coming from virtually all directions below the cloud deck.

For those who aren't familiar with radar imaging, these images do not show shadows cast by the Sun. They show the shadows cast by the radar emitter. The radar waves strike the terrain and are backscattered toward the receiver, which processes the intensity into a value that, in the image, ranges from "lowest" energy received to "max energy received" - e.g., black through grays to white. A higher object, from the perspective of the radar, blocks an area beyond it from receiving much radar energy, so any of that blanked-out area which might be in the field of view has little or no radar energy to reflect.

Radar waves striking surfaces which absorb strongly in the radar frequency band being emitted look dark, where 'dark' means little backscattered energy to be picked up by the receiver. Radar waves striking radar-reflecting surfaces which reflect radar away from the receiver also look dark. Those dark areas are usually the ones that are perceived in the radar image as 'shadows'. Radar waves striking reflecting surfaces which are large compared to the radar's wavelength reflect almost all the energy, and if they are oriented so that they reflect it toward the receiver, the image is "lit up" there, and is white or light grey in the monochromatic or gray scale interpretation usually used.

The interesting case is where the surface scatters or diffuses the incident radar energy. Those areas are intermediate grays, depending on the local strength of scattering. In reality, every radar interaction with a surface material has all three phenomena occurring simultaneously: specular or "mirror-like" reflection, where the energy reflects out at the same angle as it arrives (Snell's Law, I think); diffuse or scattered, where the energy may be partly absorbed by some parts of the surface and partly reflected by others, or simply reflected through a much wider angle than Snell's law conditions (sort of Lambert's Cosine Law); and finally, absorption, where the energy inherent in the wave resonates with the structure of the material being irradiated and energy is extracted so the returning wave carries less energy than it arrived with.

Regarding scale - they (NASA) could put a scale on it if they chose to. Radar photogrammetry is an old and widely used technology. They choose to omit a lot of potentially useful information, but in press releases, face it, the average consumer wouldn't know what to do with a scale legend except maybe say, "wow - that big, huh? Cool."

Many thanks for this revealing observation! It really is a new and better way of viewing Venus radar images. You should pass it along to NASA, and maybe ask them why their Magellan archive doesn't show the images this way! I need to take a second look at the "arachnoid" structures!

Jim
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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby starbiter » Fri Mar 26, 2010 1:12 pm

Hello jjohnson: I'm confused [nothing new] about what appears to be shadows in the radar images. The dense atmosphere would probably prevent shadows. If the Sun was rising or setting, the features facing the Sun MIGHT be brighter. I don't think that is an issue here using radar, as you state.

Is what appears to be a shadow caused by the speed of the satellite? Would there be a lag between transmission and reception of the microwave signal on the fast moving satellite sufficient to cause the shadow? Image pia00084 is the one i'm looking at. If the sensor/satellite was not moving would there still be a shadow?

The terrain feature on Google Maps also has lighter and darker sides of features.

Hello Wanderer: Thanks for your comment on the dune stuff. If you any questions please ask them over on the dune thread.

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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby jjohnson » Fri Mar 26, 2010 2:51 pm

You're right - these are radar shadows, not sunlight shadows. There is no visible light associated with the taking of these pictures. They could be done on the night side of Venus and obtain the same effect. It's like SLAR (side looking air-borne radar) in reconnaissance aircraft, or infrared images in a vision enhancement scope.

In the case of picture 0084, the inverted image at the bottom of the pair shows the shadow arcs on the left. This could mean that the radar transmitter on the satellite was off to the far left, "shining" the radar toward the terrain from that direction. Assuming that the lip shades a part of the lower interior surface, the shadow extends out to the right. The radar transmitter is usually not located very far from the receiver, however. They are usually the same.

In cases like this one, however, the radar transmitter and the radar receiver are the same dish (or more recently, phased array elements; but not back in Magellan's time frame). If the look angle is very shallow, the shadows might be more hidden, like looking downsun at sunset, plus circular depressions look elliptical in that perspective, and a transform needs to be applied to convert the picture to overhead.

More likely the radar is in fact looking nadir (down at) the planet. Then the dark areas are less likely radar shadows and more likely to be areas where the radar beams are not returned, but are directed away in another direction and therefore not picked up by the receiver from the point it is "staring" at. If you compare the speed of near-planet satellites to the transit time of the radar, down to the ground and back up, the radar dish doesn't move very far between the time it transmits its brief signal and receives it from the ground. As the satellite tracks along, the size and locations of dark and light returns changes. One has to select the best images for interpretation. When (if) the radar images are displayed in negative fashion, with strong returns looking dark, and vice versa, the mind is confused about what it is seeing, and it is hard to make an accurate mental estimate of what is high and what is deep to achieve a sense of depth in the picture.

If the satellite is above the leftmost part of the crater, say, it is looking straight down at the sloped interior wall and at the slightly rising exterior slope. The radar return from the shallow upslope might look a little brighter than the angled interior wall from that position, as the interior wall might re-direct the radar off at an angle away from the overhead spacecraft. The angle from the overhead position there would be a little shallower over to the far interior wall, so it might look like a somewhat brighter return, while the outer rim might look a little darker than the closer side of the rim. SInce the radar wavelength is very short, unless it is looking at rather large flat areas, most surfaces would reflect radar beams in a lot more directions away from the receiver than right back to the receiver. Such scattering can decrease the strength of the return, but by the same token, scattered energy comes back from all over the field of view, even if it's only a smaller amount, so it is possible to build up pretty good imagery thereby.

How far does the radar (the satellite) move in the time it takes between transmitting a radar pulse and receiving the returns drom that pulse? The simplest case is if you look at the near vertical path, straight down and back (or nearly so, as you'll see). IF the radar has a wide look angle, or is constantly scanning and integrating a wide angle picture, then beams that go way off axis and hit a distant part of the planet surface and return will take more time, and the dish will have moved further along track than for the simple up and down pulse directly below.

For Venus, I did a rough calculation that shows that a satellite's orbital velocity if it is (an arbitrary) 500 km above the surface would be about 7,042 m/s. (circular orbit assumed for simplicity). Radar of course moves at c, roughly 300,000 m/s. So, when the radar pulse hits the surface, the satellite has moved for about 1.667 milliseconds, which at its velocity moves it 11.74 m along track. Let's say the return pulse takes the same time back, and that we ignore atmospheric affect on the light velocity, and ignore any curvature in the orbit over a few milliseconds. I'm sure such corrections, and more I've never thought of, are built into the software used by NASA in conjunction with the mapping or imaging radar, of course. So, the satellite travels for 2 x 11.74 m or about 23.5 m between emitting and receiving each pulse. It can emit a pulse train with a whole lot of pulses every second and still have quiet off-time enough to receive the returns and store them for processing into an "intensity map" of the ground return. After that, you just have to convert those intensity values into your gray scale, and use the timing and position from the spacecraft's accelerometers or nav system to plot those individual picture elements onto a local projection of the planet.

It may be that the time difference between radiating and receiving pulses and the motion of the satellite along track does in fact allow the satellite to have a small amount of parallax so that it "sees" the return a little differently than if it were not moving, but I am neither an expert on radar nor mapping so that's a conjecture, and I sort of doubt that it is true.

The terrain features on Google Earth and Google maps are captured (mostly) in visible light (sunlight), just like aerial photos from planes are, so unless the pictures are taken around local noon with the sun directly behind the camera, there will be shadows visible of objects and certain terrain features. The direction and lengths of shadows, if you know the time and therefore the exact position of the sun with relation to the ground photograph, you can measure how high objects are and build up pretty accurate 3-D images of them.
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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby Solar » Fri Mar 26, 2010 2:59 pm

"Our laws of force tend to be applied in the Newtonian sense in that for every action there is an equal reaction, and yet, in the real world, where many-body gravitational effects or electrodynamic actions prevail, we do not have every action paired with an equal reaction." — Harold Aspden
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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby jjohnson » Fri Mar 26, 2010 3:04 pm

Much better explanation than mine! :D
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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby starbiter » Fri Mar 26, 2010 3:19 pm

Thanks gentlemen: Now i have to read the JPL stuff. Thanks for the math jjohnson. 23.5 meters of motion. Very cool.

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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby jjohnson » Fri Mar 26, 2010 5:14 pm

Well, that was for an assumed orbital altitude. I don't know if that is representative or not, but it gives you an idea. If anyone wants to see the (pretty simple math) let me know. Or do what I did and look at
http://www.physicsclassroom.com/CLASS/circles/u6l4c.cfm

That's a useful site.
;)
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Re: A New View of Venus???

Unread postby Wanderer » Fri Mar 26, 2010 6:06 pm

Hi All,

Thanks for all the comments and the JPL link, very interesting.

I've done a little bit more research in order to find something a bit more tangible and familiar that I hope will show things a little clearer. If the imaging instrument is at nadir when sending the signals you would think that would give the most accurate description of whatever surface it is imaging.

So I did a little bit of searching and found a radar image of the Galapagos Islands, Alcedo and Sierra Negra volcanoes (PIA00499) and then compared it to the terrain view in Google maps. Results are below, I think they speak for themselves. I understand that obviously angles and how we interpret images has a lot to do with it but nonetheless I think its a useful technique for a more "human" viewpoint.

Maybe I should get on to Nasa, could call it the Dalton Technique ;)

Radar Image (not enhanced)
The image is centered at about 0.5 degree south latitude and 91 degrees west longitude and covers an area of 75 by 60 kilometers (47 by 37 miles). The radar incidence angle at the center of the image is about 20 degrees.

Image

Google Maps Link
http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=galapagos+islands&sll=40.697299,-3.317871&sspn=12.487618,28.54248&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Galapagos+Islands,+Galapagos,+Ecuador&ll=-0.84729,-91.200256&spn=0.81152,1.360931&t=p&z=10

PS Not so sure about the accuracy of the terrain in Google maps, I would like to think Nasa would be far better at that :)

jim - nice maths link, will make use of that site...

If any of you want to try this our yourself, some basic imaging software is all you need, it's amazing how some simple techniques can really enhance images and completely change your perspective on things. Another reason why science should should be multi-diciplinary and not so specialised. It's all about how you look at things.

g
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Volcanic Venus, or...

Unread postby jjohnson » Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:20 am

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2010/volcanic-venus-0409.html
This little film clip from NASA/JPL accompanied a story on possible sighting of a hot spot on Venus. The standard interpretation is that it may be a volcanic action. Interesting, given the temperature of the surface and its blanketing atmosphere, the temperature differential is only about 20C. It was accompanied by a "hot spot" in the atmosphere.

Instead of, say, a dormant volcano with a cooling pyroclastic flow down the side, a possible explanation might be a low-grade electrical discharge phenomenon. The detail does not show a distinct caldera at the top of the hill, but that might just be a resolution problem; who knows? High points are known favored electrical discharge points, from observations here on Earth, of course. Many people (not all) know better than to stand on a hill or under a tree during a thunderstorm, for example. Other than thermal mapping, there is no mention as to any accompanying electrical or electromagnetic activity, such as lightning, or "twister-like" activity such as observed on Mars with brightly emitting tops. It's not that easy to "see" below Venus's cloud cover, of course.

Venus might be hot enough internally to have vulcanism, but of course we have no internal temperature probes there, any more than we do down-hole measurements through sunspots, beyond noting it sure seems cooler there in those spots than it oughta be according to the standard solar model. As temperature differentials go and as a single-band (IR) analysis goes, this leaves a lot of potential questions (as they are not being asked at NASA) unanswered.
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...or St.Elmo's fire

Unread postby FS3 » Fri Apr 09, 2010 11:20 am

St. Elmo's fire is a typically electrical phenomenon in which luminous plasma is created by a coronal discharge originating from a grounded object in an atmospheric electric field.

So most possibly in the case of Venus.

Radar data provided by MAGELLAN in the 90ies showed puzzled scientists that many of the Venus mountains had peaks that shone brightly in radar.

Charged plasma reflects radar like a mirror.

So these might be those typical "volcans" that space-scientists like to see when lightning strikes.

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Re: Volcanic Venus, or...

Unread postby nick c » Fri Apr 09, 2010 12:06 pm

Some thoughts on Venus and volcanos and an interior source for Venus' heat.
The EU theory does not preclude the presence of volcanos on Venus. Thornhill has stated that some of what has been interpreted as volcanos is better explained as St Elmo's fire on mountain tops. That being said, I would think that Venus' interior must be very hot, and volcanos would be no surprise and probably should be expected. The EU attributes Venus' high temperatures to internal heat (due to its' youth and recent catastrophic past) not to a runaway greenhouse effect. So, imhop, volcanos would be consistent with the EU expectations for Venus.
Thornhill wrote:In any case, volcanoes are an electric discharge phenomenon so that the discovery of active volcanoes on Venus cannot be used as a distinguishing test for or against the electrical model of Venus.

http://www.holoscience.com/news.php?article=9aqt6cz5


Why Venus' extraordinary heat is coming from the interior of the planet:
Thornhill wrote:This account explains many odd things about Venus; its slow retrograde spin; its hellish temperature, having being born recently from the core of a brown dwarf star; its thick atmosphere inherited from the brown dwarf and subsequently modified by cosmic discharges; and its equatorial scars caused by spectacular radial discharging, which was faithfully recorded by the petroglyph artists. Venus carried away significant charge from its parent so that it still has a 'cometary' magnetotail and its mountains glow with plasma discharges. Venus also shows a surprisingly young surface that gave rise to ad hoc theories of resurfacing events. They are unnecessary. Venus is a baby.

http://www.holoscience.com/news.php?article=f16tg4w1


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Negative Anode Venus

Unread postby remelic » Tue May 18, 2010 11:10 am

Do the Pancake formations on Venus represent negative discharge strikes? This could prove that Venus is in fact a negative anode?

Image

These pancake features look just like the Lichtenberg experiments negative discharge pattern!

Image - From http://www.everythingselectric.com/ Great site.

Or do these kinds of discharge happen on all bodies?

Thanks

Peter
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Re: Negative Anode Venus

Unread postby Krackonis » Tue May 18, 2010 12:51 pm

There is a wide variety of different types of electrical scarring on most(all) bodies in the solar system. Current Amperage, Voltage difference, movement of the bodies as they pass one another, along with atmospheric density and composition, will affect the outcome of the discharges.

They kind of remind me of the Brandinberg Massif, but I will let someone with more qualifications judge how the plasmoids that made them struck.
Neil Thompson

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Re: Negative Anode Venus

Unread postby redeye » Mon May 24, 2010 3:06 pm

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