Named after a pagan goddess, Venus the planet, is the second brightest object (bright enough to cast shadows in fact) in the night sky. The one that has him (or “her” I guess) beaten is the Moon. No other planet or star, besides the Sun of course, is brighter than Venus. This makes it stand out in the night sky.

But, there is more to Venus then meets the eye. The first interesting fact about Venus is how long and how it orbits the sun.

The average planet orbits the Sun in an elliptical pattern. However, Venus does not do this. Instead, Venus orbits the Sun in a very circular path. Also, where it takes the Earth 365.25 days to orbit the Sun, Venus only takes 224.65 days to do the same. Actually, Venus orbits the Sun 1.6 times in the time it takes Earth to make one orbit.

Not only is Venus the brightest planet but it is also the closest. About every 584 days Venus comes in between the sun and the earth. This is known as an inferior conjunction and brings Venus within 25,000,000 miles of Earth. The Moon is 236,600 miles away. Looks like the Moon beat Venus again.

Another interesting fact about Venus does not involve its orbit but it’s rotation. Earth, and all the other planets, revolve counterclockwise, but, Venus, ever the unique one, rotates clockwise. Not only does it rotate differently, but it also rotates very slowly. In fact, Venus rotates so slowly that one Venus day is longer than in the Venus year. Quite strange.800px-Venus-pacific-levelled

Even though it may look pretty, and be about the same size as Earth, we have many differences. Including the fact that Venus is the hottest planet in our solar system.

While the Earth has a perfect amount of atmospheric pressure, the Venus’s pressure is 92 times that of Earth’s. This would not help any life form trying to survive there. The land itself contained lifeless deserts and rocks. The only thing that changes the scenery is the occasional volcano.

The clouds on Venus are extremely thick, some as deep as 30 miles. These thick clouds are part of the reason Venus is such a bright object in the night sky.

The planet Venus is so very unique through the way it rotates, orbits, reflects light and even the dull scenery on the ground. I’m very glad God made this planet just like He did, and I’m glad He made it so easy to spot.

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