PIA10123: Approaching Venus

Approaching Venus


On Oct. 24, 2006, the MESSENGER spacecraft came within 2,990 kilometers (1,860 miles) of Venus during its second planetary encounter. Twenty days before closest approach to Venus the MESSENGER Dual Imaging System snapped pictures of the planet from a distance of about 16.5 million kilometers (10.3 million miles). Despite the low resolution of the image on the left, one can see that Venus is shrouded in a thick blanket of clouds that hides its surface. The picture on the right is the same image expanded four times, clearly showing the dense Venusian cloud cover.

Background Info:

These images are from MESSENGER, a NASA Discovery mission to conduct the first orbital study of the innermost planet, Mercury. For information regarding the use of images, see the MESSENGER image use policy .

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target Venus Mercury
System Mercury
Target Type Planet
Instrument Host MESSENGER
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
Extra Keywords Grayscale
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2006-11-24
Date in Caption 2006-10-24
Image Credit NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA10123
Identifier PIA10123