Does a Recent Discovery Hint at Life on Venus?
by Jules Da Costa, age 13
Scientists recently found substantial evidence that there could be life on Venus. They do not believe it to be like life on Earth, but life in some different form.
Scientists found the gas phosphine on Venus. It is produced on Earth by microbes and can be found in swamps. The scientists discovered phosphine 62 kilometers above Venus's surface in the cloud layer. Scientists say that the phosphine has to be continuously made or else it would be destroyed within 1,000 years. This is why they think the presence of phosphine could be a sign of life on Venus.
Venus’s surface is extreme and too hot for humans. Temperatures can reach 470 degrees Celsius. Unlike Earth, Venus has a constant cloud layer.
“The clouds are like the ocean of Venus, they’re global and deep and stable – they’re not like clouds on Earth, which are more ephemeral,” said David Grinspoon from the Planetary Science Institute in Arizona.
Though scientists have found evidence of phosphine on Venus, this does not guarantee there to be life on the planet. Researchers will keep looking for evidence and conducting experiments for the future.
[Sources: New Scientist; NASA; Assoicated Press]