For NASA, SRI researchers made the first observation of visible light emitted by oxygen atoms in the night-side airglow of Venus, offering new insight into the planet’s atmosphere.
Although much is known about the Earth’s nightglow, in the visible spectral region there is very limited information concerning Venus or Mars. Mars is a potential target for similar observations, which will help to develop a more coherent picture than presently exists of the nightglows of all three planets.
With discoveries of planets circling other suns, it may become possible to view the emissions from these planets and compare them to what is known about our own solar system. Learn more