India’s Venus orbiter and Phosphine

ISRO reveals more details on Shukrayaan and phosphine on Venus wants to make a comeback.

ISRO has finally revealed more details about their upcoming Venus orbiter Shukrayaan. Here’s my article on the mission updates, published at SpaceNews––my first for them! :)

ISRO’s Venus orbiter launches in 2024

Shukrayaan is among a bunch of future space science missions that ISRO is preparing to launch in the next five years. These include India’s first solar orbiter and a specialized X-ray telescope.

Future ISRO science missions

Phosphine swinging

The detection of phosphine in Venus’ upper atmosphere got people excited about the prospects of life there, but then the result got disputed. Apparently it’s now being reclaimed as re-analysis using newly calibrated data shows a weaker-but-present phosphine signal.

Meanwhile, there seems to be independent evidence that NASA’s Pioneer probe found phosphine during its atmospheric descent in 1978. It turns out India’s Venus orbiter may be able to detect phosphine, read the article linked above!

Possible life or not, Venus is an underrated planet. What other scientific mysteries does it offer us? Learn about what past missions to Venus have revealed and why we need to send more orbiters and atmospheric probes to the planet.

Why explore Venus

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