A Caltech Library Service

Venus lower atmosphere heat balance

Ingersoll, Andrew P. and Pechmann, Judith B. (1980) Venus lower atmosphere heat balance. Journal of Geophysical Research A, 85 (A13). pp. 8219-8222. ISSN 0148-0227. doi:10.1029/JA085iA13p08219.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Pioneer Venus observations of temperatures and radiative fluxes are examined in an attempt to understand the thermal balance of the lower atmosphere. If all observations are correct and the probe sites are typical of the planet, the second law of thermodynamics requires that the bulk of the lower atmosphere heating must come from a source other than direct sunlight or a thermally driven atmospheric circulation. Neither the so-called greenhouse models nor the mechanical heating models are consistent with this interpretation of the observations. One possible interpretation is that two out of the three probe sites are atypical of the planet. Additional lower atmosphere heat sources provide another possible interpretation. These include a planetary heat flux that is 250 times the earth's, a secular cooling of the atmosphere, and a chemically energetic rain carrying solar energy from the clouds to the surface. Other data make these interpretations seem unlikely, so measurement error remains a serious possibility.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Ingersoll, Andrew P.0000-0002-2035-9198
Additional Information:© 1980 American Geophysical Union. Manuscript Accepted: 9 May 1980; Manuscript Received: 18 November 1979. Contribution 3368 of the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology.
Other Numbering System:
Other Numbering System NameOther Numbering System ID
Caltech Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences3368
Issue or Number:A13
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20130227-110843132
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Ingersoll, A. P., and J. B. Pechmann (1980), Venus lower atmosphere heat balance, J. Geophys. Res., 85(A13), 8219–8222, doi:10.1029/JA085iA13p08219.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:37176
Deposited On:28 Feb 2013 16:12
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 23:27

Repository Staff Only: item control page