Landing a Rover on Venus Could Become Possible Due to a New Technology

Landing a Rover on Venus Could Become Possible Due to a New Technology

Astronomers always thought that landing a rover on Venus is not exactly a walk in the park unless that park is filled with acid rain, scorching temperatures, and hurricane-force winds.

First of all, Venus is notorious for having one of the thickest atmospheres in the solar system. It’s like trying to land a rover in a sea of soup. The atmosphere is so thick that it would make a bowl of oatmeal jealous.

And let’s not forget about the heat. The surface of Venus is hotter than a sauna in the Sahara. In fact, it’s so hot that it could melt lead. So not only do you have to navigate through a thick, soupy atmosphere, but you also have to do it while avoiding getting roasted like a Thanksgiving turkey.

NASA grants new hope

You got the point until now: sending a rover to Venus is like trying to land on an alien planet that’s hell-bent on killing everything that touches it. But there’s a glimmer of hope! According to Universe Today, NASA has teamed up with Advanced Thermal Batteries, Inc. to develop a battery that can withstand Venus’ extreme conditions. The battery is based on thermal battery systems used for smart missiles and can operate for an entire Venus solar day (about 120 Earth-days) at the planet’s temperatures. This battery technology could revolutionize energy storage in harsh environments across the solar system.

The battery is a key component for NASA’s Long-Lived In situ Solar System Explorer (LLISSE) program, which aims to develop a small Venus lander that can collect scientific data and transmit it to a Venus orbiter for 60 days or longer. The LLISSE will carry a suite of sensors to measure atmospheric conditions, but all of its electronics, communications, and instrumentation will require a reliable power source. While it’s still in development, the new thermal battery technology has demonstrated high-temperature operation for unprecedented periods of time and could pave the way for future exploration on Venus and other harsh environments in the solar system.

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