Letter | Published:

Spectrum of the Venus day sky

Abstract

The spectrum of solar radiation reflected by Venus' atmosphere has long been studied by ground-based telescopes: these studies were a major source of information on the composition of atmosphere gases and also about the upper part of the cloud layer. In December 1978 the Soviet descenders Venera 11 and Venera 12 measured the spectrum of scattered solar radiation within the atmosphere with a resolution sufficient to identify the absorption bands of atmosphere gases. We report here the first observations of the spectra of the Venus day sky.

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