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Glory on Venus cloud tops and the unknown UV absorber

Markiewicz, W. J. and Petrova, E. and Shalygina, O. and Almeida, M. and Titov, D.V. and Limaye, S, S. and Ignatiev, N.I. and Roatsch, Thomas and Matz, Klaus-Dieter (2014) Glory on Venus cloud tops and the unknown UV absorber. Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies, 234, pp. 200-203. Elsevier. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2014.01.030 ISSN 0019-1035

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We report on the implications of the observations of the glory phenomenon made recently by Venus Express orbiter. Glory is an optical phenomenon that poses stringent constraints on the cloud properties. These observations thus enable us to constrain two properties of the particles at the cloud tops (about 70 km altitude) which are responsible for a large fraction of the solar energy absorbed by Venus. Firstly we obtain a very accurate estimate of the cloud particles size to be 1.2 lm with a very narrow size distribution. We also find that for the two observations presented here the clouds are homogenous, as far as Venus cloud particles sizes are concerned, on scale of at least 1200 km. This is in contrast to previous estimates Atmosphere that were either local, from entry probes data, or averaged over space and time from polarization data.Secondly we find that the refractive index for the data discussed here is higher than that of sulfuric acid previously proposed for the clouds composition (Hansen, J.E., Hovenier, J.W. [1974]. J. Atmos. Sci. 31,1137–1160; Ragent, B. et al. [1985]. Adv. Space Res. 5, 85–115). Assuming that the species contributing to the increase of the refractive index is the same as the unknown UV absorber, we are able to constrain the list of candidates. We investigated several possibilities and argue that either small ferric chloride (FeCl3) cores inside sulfuric acid particles or elemental sulfur coating their surface are good explanations of the observation. Both ferric chloride and elemental sulfur have been suggested in the past as candidates for the as yet unknown UV absorber (Krasnopolsky, V.A. [2006]. Planet. Space Sci. 54, 1352–1359; Mills, F.P. et al. [2007]. In: Esposito, L.W., Stofan, E.R., Cravens, T.E. (Eds.), Exploring Venus as a Terrestrial Planet, vol. 176. AGU Monogr. Ser., Washington, DC, pp. 73–100).

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/88453/
Document Type:Article
Title:Glory on Venus cloud tops and the unknown UV absorber
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthors ORCID iD
Markiewicz, W. J.markiewicz (at) mps.mpg.deUNSPECIFIED
Petrova, E.Max Planck Institut f. SonnensystemforschungUNSPECIFIED
Almeida, M.European Space Astronomy Centre, European Space Agency, Madrid, SpainUNSPECIFIED
Titov, D.V.ESA-ESTEC, SRE-SM Keplerlaan 1, PO Box 299, 2200 AG Noordwijk ZH, The NetherlandsUNSPECIFIED
Limaye, S, S.Univ. of WisconsinUNSPECIFIED
Ignatiev, N.I.Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Max-Planck-Straße 2, 37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, GermanyUNSPECIFIED
Roatsch, Thomasthomas.roatsch (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Matz, Klaus-DieterKD.Matz (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Date:March 2014
Journal or Publication Title:Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2014.01.030
Page Range:pp. 200-203
Keywords:Venus, Atmosphere, Photometry
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Science and Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Vorhaben Venus Express Kamera (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Geology
Deposited By: Roatsch, Dr.rer.nat. Thomas
Deposited On:26 May 2014 09:10
Last Modified:26 May 2014 09:10

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