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Colonizing Venus

Posted by: jrpalmer - Sun Apr 14, 2013 3:21 pm
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Colonizing Venus 
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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 6:30 am
There is a habitable zone in the high atmosphere where the pressure is survivable, and above the corrosive/poisonous clouds. Unfortunately, at that point you have to contend with Radiation, because there's no Magnetic Field to speak of.

Venus does have several good things going for it, just too much of all of them. Energy, No Prob. The vast majority of the energy in the system (I.E. the Sun) is Right There, and you've got enough volatiles to cover Mars hundreds of times over. So, rather than trying to make it liveable, I'd exploit it for resources. Solar powered gas mining, and ships to sail it out for all the habitats for the entire system. (Beats trying to get it all from Earth, or out in the cold dark of the Cometary Belts.)

As mentioned earlier, the rotation, or lack thereof is the real killer. I can't conceive of any way to literally move worlds, in any reasonable time frame. By comparison, all the others are relatively fixable. On smaller planets (Mars) it's been suggested that we could use impactors to affect the rotation, but Venus is a bad candidate for this because it's far away from any significant populations of Impactors (Like the main Belt) and it's dense/corrosive atmosphere would soak up far too much of the energy before it hit the surface. The already astronomically high energy costs would skyrocket (If you'll pardon all those puns.)

In my science fiction my solution was to make a moon out of Mercury (The planet, not the element) to give you some concept of the scale of the problems.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 9:12 am
I don't understand why anyone would want to colonize Venus, when you could have Mars.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 12:16 pm
SuperShuki wrote:
I don't understand why anyone would want to colonize Venus, when you could have Mars.


For the fun of the technological challange it poses.

There is no reason why we couldn't have all the planetary bodies and moons in the solar system to play with.

We have a massive fusion reactor at our disposal, we have thousands of Earth masses to play with. The only thing we are lacking is enough people finding it fun to play with physics amongst the planets and moons instead of playing with guns amongst ourselves.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 1:24 pm
If you want a challenge, go to Alpha Centauri. As for guns, they are fun to play with, and good to have, in order to stop the bad guys from taking away our spaceships. Or our kangaroos, as the case may be.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 7:54 pm
SuperShuki wrote:
If you want a challenge, go to Alpha Centauri. As for guns, they are fun to play with, and good to have, in order to stop the bad guys from taking away our spaceships. Or our kangaroos, as the case may be.

Alpha Centauri is a 3 star system. There's no stable orbit for anything resembling a Planet there, so at best, we spend decades, and more energy than the United States has produced in it's history to go look at stars, then hopefully come back. I'd send a Robotic Probe. There's not likely to be anything there except for us except what we'd take with us.

We have plenty of challenges that would actually do something for us without investing in something so collossal without any possibility of gaining anything from it except the Kodak moment to end all Kodak moments.

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Last edited by Psiberzerker on Thu May 23, 2013 5:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 8:34 pm
SuperShuki wrote:
If you want a challenge, go to Alpha Centauri. As for guns, they are fun to play with, and good to have, in order to stop the bad guys from taking away our spaceships. Or our kangaroos, as the case may be.

And if done well we could shoot things into orbit. Bad guys are the product of our culture, we use guns to protect ourselves because we still haven't figured out how not to produce them. In most cases its our fondness to solve disagreement by killing eachother that brings forth the bad guys. Interestingly the bad guys are always the ones on the other side.

Anyway the point I was trying to make was that we don't need to chose. We have unimaginable amount of resources at our fingertips, we have insane amount of space and time to play around in. We still don't see how easy it would be to do it all because we are looking at space and still think it's just like another continent, or a gold mine. It's so many orders of magnitude more than what we are used to. We think like people who won the lottery and who argue within themselves wether to buy a washing machine, a new house, or go on a holiday.

We are talking about thousands of Earth masses, millions of times more energy we use right now, surface areas and living spaces millions of times more than what we utilise now. Practically the numbers go off the charts once you consider interstellar expansion. Life has barely begun in this universe.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Tue May 21, 2013 8:51 pm
box wrote:
SuperShuki wrote:
If you want a challenge, go to Alpha Centauri. As for guns, they are fun to play with, and good to have, in order to stop the bad guys from taking away our spaceships. Or our kangaroos, as the case may be.

And if done well we could shoot things into orbit. Bad guys are the product of our culture, we use guns to protect ourselves because we still haven't figured out how not to produce them. In most cases its our fondness to solve disagreement by killing each other that brings forth the bad guys. Interestingly the bad guys are always the ones on the other side.


Nonsense. There is good and evil in this world, and you should take a trip to the middle east to learn the difference. Did you know that slavery still exists in this part of the world? Did you know that torture and murder of political opponents is accepted, and expected? Did you know that people are murdered for homosexuality, or for converting to another religion? Did you know that men murder their sisters for going out with men they don't approve of, or of going out at all? And you seriously blame good people for defending themselves from these animals? What's wrong with you?

box wrote:
Anyway the point I was trying to make was that we don't need to chose. We have unimaginable amount of resources at our fingertips, we have insane amount of space and time to play around in. We still don't see how easy it would be to do it all because we are looking at space and still think it's just like another continent, or a gold mine. It's so many orders of magnitude more than what we are used to. We think like people who won the lottery and who argue within themselves wether to buy a washing machine, a new house, or go on a holiday.

We are talking about thousands of Earth masses, millions of times more energy we use right now, surface areas and living spaces millions of times more than what we utilise now. Practically the numbers go off the charts once you consider interstellar expansion. Life has barely begun in this universe.


True enough. And I hope eventually the rest of the universe will be colonized, eventually.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 3:25 am
I don't blame anyone for defending themselves. All I am saying is that weapons and fighting these "evil"s with guns is futile. The problem is in our heads, its learned behavior patterns that are hard to unlearn. Especially when people feel threatened by others.

The west isn't any more innocent than the middle eastern cultures our "evil" is manifested in different ways. Slavery has been repackaged and sold to the masses, marital abuse, sexual abuse is still common just people ignore it. And just because we jail people if they murder family members or strangers our society still produces such behavior so we can't claim moral superiority.

Especially if you consider how the european cultures invaded and exterminated other cultures around the world. The middle east is way far behind in the number and magnitude of attrocities commited against human beings.

This "evil" is a global problem, the battlefield is in our minds. Possibly the first step is stopping all this I am good you are evil mentality. It hasn't got us anywhere.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 6:23 am
box wrote:
I don't blame anyone for defending themselves. All I am saying is that weapons and fighting these "evil"s with guns is futile. The problem is in our heads, its learned behavior patterns that are hard to unlearn. Especially when people feel threatened by others.

The west isn't any more innocent than the middle eastern cultures our "evil" is manifested in different ways. Slavery has been repackaged and sold to the masses, marital abuse, sexual abuse is still common just people ignore it. And just because we jail people if they murder family members or strangers our society still produces such behavior so we can't claim moral superiority.

Especially if you consider how the european cultures invaded and exterminated other cultures around the world. The middle east is way far behind in the number and magnitude of attrocities commited against human beings.

This "evil" is a global problem, the battlefield is in our minds. Possibly the first step is stopping all this I am good you are evil mentality. It hasn't got us anywhere.


You simply don't want to fight, even though it is necessary, so you explain away the need. You are comparing a squirt gun to a tornado (thanks to a blogger for that phrase). Like a said, take a trip to the Middle East (not Israel - although we'd love to have you visit, it's civilized here), go to Sudan, or Egypt, or Syria (a lovely place, especially right now), or Lebanon, or Saudi Arabia (especially if you are a woman), or a whole host of other places where cruelty is accepted publicly. A few days ago, I picked up my complimentary gas mask from the mall (I got a letter in the mail saying that mine was ready). 'Nuff said.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 1:27 pm
He was speaking of the ideal, and honestly admitting that no human culture is *perfect*, where you are being both pragmatic and a bit jingoistic. Western culture (to include Israel) has it's own problems and dark side.

Point being, we live in a world of limited resources and "we" collectively do not allocate those resources efficiently or rationally. From crafting electronic gadgets that we sell to each other and waste millions of man-hours a day on, to weapons that can destroy all life on this planet several times over. At least those backward, barbaric cultures have the excuse of not knowing any better...

"We" are not going to advance as a species, until that changes.


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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 5:15 pm
JamesG wrote:
He was speaking of the ideal, and honestly admitting that no human culture is *perfect*, where you are being both pragmatic and a bit jingoistic. Western culture (to include Israel) has it's own problems and dark side.

Point being, we live in a world of limited resources and "we" collectively do not allocate those resources efficiently or rationally. From crafting electronic gadgets that we sell to each other and waste millions of man-hours a day on, to weapons that can destroy all life on this planet several times over. At least those backward, barbaric cultures have the excuse of not knowing any better...

"We" are not going to advance as a species, until that changes.


Not to mentioned the "Civilized" practice of shipping resources to factories after several pre-manufacture stages, then producing Individually wrapped Ketchup Packets, wrapping those in plastic, cardboard, plastic again, and then putting them on a truck for a local, regional, and national distribution centers before finally getting them to the MacDonalds where you get a handfull of them, and throw out 60% (On average from a personal survey of MacDs' trash cans around the late 90-early 2000s. I have no reason to believe this has changed for the better.)

That's just one glaring example, but all those stages of shipping alone maximizes the profits for middlemen, and fuel consumption for all the planes, trains, trucks, and cars in all those stages. An open pit fire is inefficient as [censored], but if you local source the wood, rabbit, and throw your fire starter in your backpack before walking off, the individual carbon footprint is still infinitessimal compared to all the fuel we burn just to get your tomatoes to the Kroger in Febuary.

I suspect this is why Global Warming reared it's ugly head in our lifetimes instead of back when our highest technology was rubbing sticks, or banging rocks together to make fire, nor even the coal fueled Industrial Revolution. Individually, our cars trucks, trains and planes are more efficient, and burn cleaner than a steam locomotive, or single stroke leaded fuel Ford, but every one of our millions of people (Men women, and children, whether they drive or not) has more than one car each (On average) and the average driving distance is tens of miles through stop lights, and signs. We at once have the most efficient products, and least efficient culture in history.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 5:24 pm
I'm not even concerned with War, and Murder on the ecological scale. People are the problem here, we no longer have any significant natural predators, and our prey is wrapped in cellophane in the cold case. It's population control, the more people we kill, the less mouths we have to feed, and SUVs we have to sell so they can drive around the corner for a pack of smokes at the gas station. Sure, there's a human cost, but as far as Mother nature is concerned, Wars, and Serial/Spree Killers are good things (Barring Ecologicl Atrocities like burning oil fields in retreat, or the defense of Bagdad.)

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 5:45 pm
SuperShuki wrote:
I don't understand why anyone would want to colonize Venus, when you could have Mars.
I tried to xplain that, but here we go again.

Mars doesn't have enough gravity to hold an atmosphere we can breathe indefinitely. Not only that, but the whole time (Probably Centuries at least) we're importing volatiles, they would be floating off to space, hopefully not faster than we can import them. Add to that, it's dry (There is water, but not enough to support a global population, AND atmosphere) cold, lacks a magnetic field to protect against Radiation, and doesn't have any of the energy resources that the planets farther in do.

Venus shares some of these problems, but has more Atmosphere than we'd need to colonize the entire solar system, as much solar energy as we can survive long enough to use, and is about half the distance (Give or take, depending on orbital configuration. If Mars is aligned with Earth, and Venus is clear on the other side of the sun, they're about equidistant) away. Like I said, colonizing Venus as a new home is probably too much time, and investment to be practicable, but it's a great resource for the volatiles, and energy we'd need to colonize Mars, the Main belt, Jovian, and Saturnian moons (As the sun starts to go Red Giant so we're forced to move...)

It would actually take more energy to ship atmospher from Venus to mars, for example, but the energy is there, so efficiency is less of an issue if it can be done more quickly (To drive down the interest rate of atmospheric losses.) Also, that means not stripping our planet, throwing a lot of it away, and still only having a temporary atmosphere over Mars. If we leave the gas mining operation running over Venus, we could conceivably maintain an atmosphere over Mars for hundreds of thousands of years before we ran out. We couldn't do that from Earth, even boiling off the seas, and cooking it out of rocks. Then, we'd have to head out to the Commets, and Gas Giants, the former way out where there's no energy to get them back, and the latter with more gravity to fight than all of the inner planets, and asteroids combined, and at distances that dwarf the diameter of the inner system.

Time is our enemy here, any of these projects would take centuries at least, and without using something as cheap and available as Venus, make that tens to hundreds of thousands of years we might not even have. I'd rather invest in something my friends' children, or grandchildren (I don't have any of my own, nor plans to make some) can move into than hope Humanity, or it's ancestors can keep their *** together for millenia.

I don't honestly think we can even do Mars in any practical way without Venus, or completely sacrificing the Earth.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 10:11 pm
My problem with Venus is the heat. How that could be overcome, I don't know. I think it could be done, but only once we have already colonized the "easy" places, like Mars, and some moons of other planets. As an energy source, sure, but it's no place to live.

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Post Re: Colonizing Venus   Posted on: Thu May 23, 2013 10:15 pm
Psiberzerker wrote:
I'm not even concerned with War, and Murder on the ecological scale. People are the problem here, we no longer have any significant natural predators, and our prey is wrapped in cellophane in the cold case. It's population control, the more people we kill, the less mouths we have to feed, and SUVs we have to sell so they can drive around the corner for a pack of smokes at the gas station. Sure, there's a human cost, but as far as Mother nature is concerned, Wars, and Serial/Spree Killers are good things (Barring Ecologicl Atrocities like burning oil fields in retreat, or the defense of Bagdad.)


I assume that you are presently going to commit suicide, in order to save the trees? Will you also kill your family and friends, in order to save the world (let's not call it "murder" - good and evil is so passe)?
By the way, resources are not limited. If they were, the human population would have been static years ago. Fortunately, we have the power to create, something socialists and liberals (in the modern meaning; the classical meaning of a liberal, i.e., a promoter of liberty, is unfortunately gone from the modern lexicon) completely miss.

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