HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Venus and Earth could be more alike than you think.
A new study co-authored by University of Hawaii planetary scientist David Trang not only shows that some lava flows on Venus could be a few years old ― but that the planet could be volcanically active.
If it is, it would be the only planet in the solar system (other than Earth) with recent eruptions.
The study was published this week in the journal Science Advances.
Lead author Justin Filiberto, of the Lunar and Planetary Institute, said a volcanically active Venus could provide insight into the interiors of planets or even in the search for life on other worlds.
Venus and Earth are often called “twins” because they’re similarly-sized and have a comparable density, mass and gravity. But Venus is probably best thought of as Earth’s evil twin due to its hellish landscape.
It’s the second planet from the Sun, and it’s really, really hot ― 870 degrees Fahrenheit hot. In fact, scientists, say, it’s the hottest planet in the solar system because of its heat-trapping atmosphere.
The atmosphere is also incompatible with life as we know it, made up of mostly carbon dioxide. Scientists believe the planet used to have surface water, but it’s all evaporated away.