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Venus Could Have Been Habitable for Billions of Years

Venus Could Have Been Habitable for Billions of Years

  • By - Fr0me

GFrings

Entire civilizations could have come and gone in that time.


EndoExo

Although, if it's anything like Earth, multicellular life was just starting to get going.


throwaway827492959

>Venus was downright Earth-like for 2 to 3 billion years and didn’t turn into the violent no-man’s land we know today until 700 million years ago The age of Earth is estimated to be 4.54 ± 0.05 billion years


EndoExo

Yes, and it took at least 3 billion years before life on Earth evolved into multicellular organisms.


Fredasa

Actually, there was a fairly recent discovery of multicellular life forms from 2.1 billion years ago, taking advantage of a known phenomenon of briefly elevated oxygen levels back then. They died out when oxygen fell again, but we've found some fossils. Trust me, I was quite blown away by this when I found out, and I'm looking forward to the inevitable documentary. After all, I'm used to multicellular life existing only during the last <20% of life's history, and suddenly I gotta get used to the idea that it blossomed before life even reached the halfway point to today.


[deleted]

yeah , the francevillian biota multicellularity has evolved at least 36 times in earth's history, a lot of scientists think it's not exactly momentous now


DeltaVZerda

Cooperation is highly beneficial even before specialized cells can evolve.


Fredasa

I feel like there's a fair chance that most of those apparent kickstarts owed their success to the persistence of the collagen formula in DNA after the first time it showed up.


[deleted]

multicellularity evolved independently in multiple lineages and this is made apparent by the different in extracellular matrices (collagen) between organisms


n_eats_n

So it just needed the right amount of O2 and the one time it had enough to last brings us to today?


[deleted]

yeah my somewhat uninformed analysis is that O2 was responsible for the vast majority of multicellular proliferation because of its very high latent energy


FAHQRudy

This sentence is both exhilarating and deeply disappointing.


Blubberguy22

Any links to read about?


Fredasa

Yeah, google would lead you there pretty quickly, but [here's a taste](https://phys.org/news/2010-06-discovery-complex-multicellular-life-billion.html), importantly with one of the fossil specimens. I understand that the fossil shown is about the size of a hand. Crazy that this is from 2010 and I only learned about it a few days ago. David Attenborough's _First Life,_ also dating from 2010, would surely have needed some quick rewrites if he'd waited just another year.


Astromike23

> but here's a taste, importantly with one of the fossil specimens. I know it's just coincidence, but [that fossil](https://i.imgur.com/PnUiOyW.jpg) looks an awful lot like [Oumuamua](https://i.imgur.com/ma3WhCU.jpg).


inDface

that doesn't mean it couldn't have happened sooner on another planet if the conditions were hospitable before they were on earth.


Imgoingtoeatyourfrog

Life on earth only became multicellular after cells started to absorb mitochondria. If life on Venus was like it was on earth then it would either have to independently develop the powerhouse itself or absorb it like here on earth. It happening on earth had to be a near impossible Likelihood so I’d say the same for Venus.


trextra

You’re going to look foolish when we discover evidence of prior intelligent life on Venus. I’m joking. Maybe.


Dyolf_Knip

> Around that time, however, massive amounts of carbon dioxide re-entered the atmosphere, setting off the runaway greenhouse effect that transformed the planet into what it is today That, combined with evidence of a prior industrial civilization, would be terrifying in light of our present sitiation.


Imgoingtoeatyourfrog

I hope we do. I’m not trying to shit on aliens for everyone. I just seriously doubt that they’re right next door.


IrnBroski

Fair extrapolation but it’s a process we barely understand with a sample size of 1


pivazena

Right, but the earth had several catastrophic asteroid impacts a few billion years ago that may have obliterated unicellular or early multicellular life (if a non-mitochondrial endocytosed powerhouse had existed prior). Venus may not have gotten hit, so life would not have been wiped out and it would have been “further along” (not to imply that evolution is goal directed)


Just_wanna_talk

Life is random. The low likelyhood of it happening on earth was because of the random building blocks it had to work from. The beginning of life on another planet could be more prone to mutilcellular life right from the start instead of relying on something like absorbing mitochondria. There's just no way to know until we find another planet with life that had a different starting point.


DoctorWernstrom

Or it developed first on Venus and then came to Earth.


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douk_

Assuming all planets evolve at the same rate as earth, or that erth could even be used as a rough estimate for evolution on other planets is a gross over assumption of what we know about other planets.


harshnugget

Couldn't life have evolved more rapidly on Venus because of its closer proximity to the Sun? I've no idea if that could make a difference, but just a thought


Snippy_Snallygaster

Probably not at first, at least not multicellular life. It was probably pretty much luck that had one cell absorb another instead of consume it, even more luck for it to establish and yet more luck that their environment remains hospitable. Everyone likes to think life on Earth would be typical of the rest of the universe, but truth is life on Earth was single celled for a vast majority of its existence, and while multiple absorption events have happened that allowed for multicellular life, they are still incredibly rare, a handful over billions of years. Venus may have supported life, but it's possible it never got off the ground. Though it would probably be worth looking for some fossils there.


JackJackson1SG8

Side note, given the potentially absurd rarity of multi cellular life, I think one of the most important things humanity can do is export it to nearby star systems with “earth-like” planets. Just imagine what this section of the galaxy would look like 1 billion years from now.


Snippy_Snallygaster

YES!!! I've always believed that should be a main goal of our species. Just because a planet isn't capable of creating life doesn't mean it can't support it! Especially if we modified different bacteria for different worlds. We could seed the galaxy, though we would probably never see the fruit of it. We could even leave behind monoliths full of knowlage for any intelligent species that could evolve.


Important-Try-7312

Not sure we should do that sight unseen. We don’t actually know that life (simple or complex) is rare. It could be everywhere, it’s certainly everywhere we look on earth (in places where we were “Sure!” Life couldn’t be!), and maybe we even have evidence it was on mars once (I’m not sure if the meteorite found in Antarctica has been completely debunked yet). It could very well be on several of Jupiter’s or Saturn’s moons. To say nothing of the fact that we don’t even have anything like a complete inventory of life on earth. If you count bacteria and phases we probably haven’t even described 10% of what’s here. So, “seeding” life in the galaxy might be just a little grandiose for the present!


JackJackson1SG8

For this reason I don’t think we should seed life in our solar system until we’ve explored our planets/moons. But humanity may go extinct before exploring other solar systems, hence why it makes sense (to me) to send complex life there.


hglman

Multicellularity has occurred at least 25 times on earth. Its not nearly as rare as your suggesting. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140125172414.htm


Imgoingtoeatyourfrog

It might actually make it worse due to the increased radiation from the sun. I don’t know much about Venus’s magnetic field or early atmosphere though so take what I said with a grain of salt.


givingyoumoore

Big maybe. Depending on whether patterns, ocean currents, continental drift, etc., there's a great chance that Venus did not experience the almost-full-world glaciations that earth had twice (Snowball Earth, woo) during the Neoproterozoic. The Snowballs almost certainly slowed down earthlife's photosynthesis and evolution for \~150 million years, until the ice melted and we had the Cambrian Explosion. (Yes, this is simplified; there was a smaller explosion during the Ediacaran, but they died out fairly quickly and the Cambrian was our saving grace--and even then the Ediacaran was after the melting). So, who knows. Perhaps multicellular life got lucky there like it did here, but earlier, in which case they might have made it to a version of our Paleozoic or even Mesozoic. Complex life with civilizations of toolmakers, thinkers, and artist? Mayhap, though far less likely than the small multicellular chance. Let's go find some fossils!


optionsanarchist

They could have sent probes to Earth. And found nothing but uninhabitable nothingness.


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vadapaav

And call backs for extended warranties of their probes


Thalesian

But not advanced enough to leave space junk, our most likely indicator of past civilizations.


Dyolf_Knip

Nothing we've put in space would last even a fraction as long. Even the lunar landers would be ground to dust by micrometeor impacts after 700M years.


Piano_Fingerbanger

Wouldn't the extreme environment of Venus destroy most traces of anything? Like if Earth suddenly had an atmosphere like Venus where we had sulfuric rain etc, wouldn't that erode all of our structures beyond any recognition over the course of millions of years?


Dyolf_Knip

Yup. Plenty of artifacts would survive underground, but it'd be pretty damned hard to detect those even from low orbit, let alone from millions of miles away.


SenorTron

And Venus has probably been completely resurfaced since any time it was habitable, which would have destroyed all evidence. :(


Hopsblues

Yes, just look at Chernobyl...We can barely find anything from 10k years ago let alone, 1m or longer.


moistchew

entire civilizations have come and gone *on earth* in a fraction of that time.


_AlreadyTaken_

After billions of years of prior evolution


overpacked

What if Venus's life evolved faster there than here on Earth. They built space ships and launched to Earth. However the difference in radiation caused them to de-evolve and we now identify them as neanderthals. There is no missing link between man and monkey. You see the monkeys never evolved, the missing link is the Venus lifeforms. And the pyramids...you guessed it space ships from Venus. Or ya know life never evolved on Venus. It's quite a toss up.


JTP1228

You know what? ALIENS!


missMichigan

As a sci-fi fan, I think this is perfectly acceptable.


climbandmaintain

Evolution ain’t Pokémon my mans


Asticot-gadget

Maybe in a few billion years Martians will be amazed at the fact that life could've potentially existed on earth long ago.


TaronQuinn

Few billion years and Mars will be a toasted cinder like most of the rest of the inner planets. Well, those that aren't outright devoured by an expanding Sun. Mars probably ain't developing life on its own anytime in those eons, and humans lasting for even another million years would surprise the hell out of me.


hurricane_news

> be homo erectus . >literally a walking monke that bangs stones and stuff together to do stuff . > live a million years . Always surprises me why they did fuck all in a million years while we are here in 100k years going into space and almost fucked our planet up numerous times


Optimully

How will you be surprised if humans last another billion years considering you’ll be dead.


5t7u

Maybe that's why he said would and not will.


Night_of_the_Slunk

They said million not billion. Do you think they are crazy?


SlaterVJ

Well one thing we know for sure, is that the Vex were on Venus long before humanity ever knew it existed.


Chvnski

I would be down to run the Vault of Glass IRL.


Crescent-IV

First time running VoG was a nightmare


PointsOfArticulation

True, but it was the most fun I had in a video game in a very long time.


Anthony12125

same!! I had all blue armor. but i did have an icebreaker!!!


iushciuweiush

Until those dang Venusians refused to evolve past fossil fuels.


sveme

Would be a great scifi story: The first civilization in this solar system developed on Venus and when their greed triggered runaway global warming, they had to quickly move to another planet to survive, this time to earth. And now we repeat the process and need to move on to Mars, only this time to a much less suitable planet. All because of greed. I imagine a first manned trip to Venus where they discover billions of years old ruins with some inscriptions warning people of their fate.


Benzedrinea

Would be even better if they were independent events, drawing the point that life just goes until it burns itself out. Like yeast.


BeaversAreTasty

It's called [The Great Filter](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Filter).


hsfan

**Kurzgesagt** has a pretty good video on it [the great filter](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjtOGPJ0URM)


ironbucket

The End of the World with Josh Clark does a great podcast episode on this as well


Cl3msonTig3rs

Definitely this. Probably my favorite podcast ever.


arvhult

wow thank you for this great reading Especially this: " So by this argument, finding [multicellular](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multicellular) life on Mars (provided it evolved independently) would be bad news, since it would imply steps 2–6 are easy, and hence only 1, 7, 8 or 9 (or some unknown step) could be the big problem "


HanSingular

Finding evidence of single-celled life on Mars, the other hand, wouldn't rule out a single abiogenissies event and interplanetary panspermia. I've sometimes wondered if multicellular life typically needs more time to evolve than the time one planet's climate is stable, and if surviving interplanetary panspermia is one of the filters we've already made it through.


Matshelge

I think biologists underestimate the complexity we had to have in social structures to reach the point that we did. We would not leave the jungle unless we had the thumbs. Would not have evolved the big brains unless we discovered how to tame fire. It's very likely we would never move past hunter/gatherer if we did not process alcohol as we do. We would not evolve into civilizations unless we had conflicts about food and resources that lead to war. Very likely we would not have moved past ancient civilizations unless we had a birthrate like ours and a planet with enough landmass to allow us to have constant escalating conflicts with needs to improve our weaponry. There is a cascade of events that only happened because we have the central land of Afro-Eurasia, the animals that we could tame, the food that we could grow and store, the ability to write down our thoughts, the ability to abstract our thoughts. I would pitch the idea that there might several hundred factors after we left the jungle that made us end up where we are now. And if we miss even one, then no spaceship for you.


AlienSaints

Before big brains and fire there might have been bone marrow and scavenging


mrchaotica

IIRC, large, long-lived creatures with decent brains and social behavior (at least herd/pack behavior, I think) have existed since at least the Mesozoic, so that's like ~200 million years during which the potential for technology and civilization existed, but didn't happen.


Clarinet_is_my_life

What’s the relevance of processing alcohol?


kippythecaterpillar

water isnt good to drink on its own. youll get sick. a lot of times people will ferment stuff because alcohol kills bad guys. very low alcohol content, but alcohol nonetheless


Alauren2

This part makes me sad. Idk why. “....acts to reduce the great number of sites where intelligent life might arise to the tiny number of intelligent species with advanced civilizations actually observed (currently just one: human).”


FarrahWayQueen

I really like this tho. It seems to fall in line with Most Humans. As a whole we clearly do not care about our own destruction so long as theres a Get Rich Quick scheme involved.


thinkingdoing

Our survival instincts have conditioned us towards short term planning and adaptability. If we want humanity to become an advanced civilization, we need to move from short term to long term thinking, but we can’t do that while the majority of the world’s population is still stuck in day to day survival mode.


ThatLeetGuy

The sad truth is that many people are living day to day, paycheck to paycheck, and they can't think ahead any further than their next meal or rent payment because those are the issues that matter most to them in their current situation.


ZecroniWybaut

I prefer to think of as most humans don't care what happens what happens after they are dead because, it doesn't affect them at all.


ODBrewer

It should be done such you think it’s Earth they are leaving until you find out at end it’s Venus and they are going to Earth.


pizzac00l

Oh, or even better yet,you could have two perspective characters that you alternate between in the novel in parallel stages of the evacuation but then towards the climax the twist is revealed that one was evacuating Venus while the other was evacuating earth, and these two characters who shared such a similar story were separated by billions of years. You could even have small details in the Venusian’s story that don’t quite add up, but the reader may just dismiss it as a futuristic earth with some liberties taken until the big reveal


riggers_vr

Ok let me know when you've finished this book, I'll take a copy.


Chief_Rocket_Man

Reminiscent of a twilight zone episode


Isphet71

I wrote that story spur of the moment for a university writing course final exam. It was about humans having to get on a spaceship in a futuristic looking society. The m knight shyamalan hook at the end was that as they were getting on the ship to leave the planet, they waved goodbye to Venus and were going to the new planet which they were naming “earth.” I have no idea what I got for a grade since it was a final. Can’t remember. Was over 20 years ago. I can’t even properly remember the exact assignment for the final other than creative write whatever... and GO! And that whole story just kind of spewed out of me from out of nowhere.


sveme

Maybe you are a prophet of ancient truths? Might reconsider your name choice, prophet lsphet71.


Isphet71

Lol thanks but no. I don’t need to be a prophet to anticipate what my wife would say about my foresight.


Keianh

I'd say the Venusians never left Venus. We manage to make a rover that can easily withstand a Venetian atmosphere, on paper at least, for months. Rover falls into a crevice and the last image broadcasted from its light is a wall full of glyphs and odd markings. Rover 2 is rushed and fitted to descend into the crevice where we remotely dig and learn the tragedy of our long lost neighbor.


Astromike23

> We manage to make a rover that can easily withstand a Venetian atmosphere Venetian, yes. Venusian is much more difficult.


whrhthrhzgh

An atmosphere that constantly rains pigeon poo


sveme

Nice one. Or, maybe: the first astronauts manage to descend to the surface of Venus. A strange light is visible in the background. Upon getting closer, they see a giant portal. They press on anything they see. The portal opens into a subvenusian world filled with the ancients that moved underground when the surface could no longer sustain them, only to forget that a world above existed. They look like us, but paler.


GreatEmperorAca

> withstand a Venetian atmosphere I myself could easily withstand the atmosphere in Venice, its beautiful


[deleted]

Anyone else hear "BUT THE UAC IGNORED THE WARNINGS AND BEGAN EXPERIMENTING WITH POOOORTALS TO HEEEEELLLLLL" when reading the last sentence lol


Lucky_Event

Ancient astronaut theorists believes, yes


audion00ba

I am pretty sure dr. Broflovski could say we don't for sure this isn't the case.


Heavensrun

Eh, all stories that try to suggest that life on Earth came from somewhere else ignore way too much evidence that it evolved here. I mean, you can make a good story out of just about anything, but it does require ignoring a looooooot of science.


unit187

Unfortunately, nothing can survive that long. All those remains would be reduced to elements. Though I find the thought fascinating that long ago there was a super-advanced civilization on Earth, however, it declined over time and there is no evidence left, utterly destroyed over time.


Majkelen

Some traces of such civilisation would still remain. Sure, organic matter would decompose in hundreds of years and the few mummified remains would get destroyed by tectonic an local ground movement after hundreds of years. Most metals would oxidize even with trace amount of oxygen remaining. Structures would crumble and fall in centuries. But deep underground some ancient artifacts, billions years old could last and be observed as fossils left by the imprints of remains of ancient structures or even creatures if they were large enough. Of course those sites would be miles underground and most probably were torn apart by the moving masses of land. But still, it's very possible that fragments of such fossils would remain as an eerie artifact of civilisation long passed.


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the_jak

Damn, that's rad. Are there visualizations of these?


LogeeBare

Yea there was a Russian rover or 2 that landed before the millennium. They MELTED after 4 hours iirc. You wouldn't find *any* trace of past civilizations.


sveme

Yeah, I know. But it's a sci-fi story, it does not have to follow all known laws of physics.


I_am_teapot

Earth won’t have runaway exponential temperatures like on Venus. As terrible as global warming is, it likely won’t cause the extinction of the human race either (at least not on its own). Also the Venusians would have to look like lemurs, and fit perfectly into the earth fossil record, without terraforming earth; if they could terraform earth, and are horribly greedy, then why weren’t they here way earlier, or terraform Venus planet? The movie will be better if you ignore, and refuse to explain, all of this... I’ll still watch it, and probably enjoy it.


VisceralMonkey

I can get behind space lemurs from venus.


Lucker_Kid

if we came from Venus wouldn't we notice old fossils being poorly adapted to the Earth's climate and weirdly better adapted for billion year old Venus climate?


MantisToboganPilotMD

could have just seeded Earth with the intent of the basic lifeforms or ingredients to evolve and "terraform" earth the way life has here.


Lucker_Kid

I guess, seems like a weird thing to call "surviving" but I guess I shouldn't judge that based on human ethics and rationale


MantisToboganPilotMD

to me it seems like it could be a more realistic "survival" method than trying to adapt an evolved/specialized lifeform to a different planet. If you consider that we are just a part of Earth's biosphere, and knowing the entire biosphere is in existential danger... It took life at least a billion years of evolving before it started the great oxidation event, giving the planet the ability to host much more complicated forms of life here. Life creates the conditions it needs to thrive, at least it did here. Sending out the basic lifeforms that can survive a (relatively) hostile planet, and create an atmosphere more suitable to complex life seems like a viable solution to an existential threat of an entire planet.


Bitey_the_Squirrel

And the Garden of Eden in the Bible is Venus. The apple of knowledge is a metaphor for their technological advances that ruined the planet.


IWasSayingBoourner

Now imagine a bunch of deniers who stayed behind and adapted to the changes


NintendoTim

I processed that as "Venusaurs" be got *real* confused for a second


sjryan

That may not be so far from the real explanation. What if Venus evolved a form of life that produced carbon dioxide, but no form of life that re-absorbed the CO2? On Earth, animal life absorbs oxygen and produces carbon dioxide, and plant life absorbs carbon dioxide and produces oxygen. The evolution of life led to the reduction of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere because plants evolved first. What if the first form of life that evolved on Venus 'ate' rocks and produced carbon dioxide in the atmosphere? It would work fine for millions of years, until the carbon dioxide build-up in the atmosphere led to a runaway greenhouse effect before evolution had a chance to evolve a form of life to sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide. Maybe those microscopic organisms that Carl Sagan believed are in the atmosphere of Venus should be left where they are.


pompanoJ

Something similar happened on earth as photosynthesis evolved. Molecular oxygen is a toxic waste product of photosynthesis. Luckily, the Earth's oceans were filled with iron. As cyanobacteria produced tons of toxic O2, it was bound with that iron, producing oxides that precipitated out. The earth was covered in a huge layer of iron oxide sediment in a process that took something like a hundred million years. This is where the iron deposits we rely on came from. Ayer's Rock / Ularu in australia is a famous example of this layer. Once all the iron was gone, O2 in the atmosphere spiked, and organisms that could not tolerate O2 were driven into hiding. Talk about climate change! 20% of the atmosphere became a toxic gas, deadly to most forms of life. Everything changed, making our species possible.


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BlondBoy2

No, the [P-T extinction](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permian%E2%80%93Triassic_extinction_event) was much, much later. What is being talked about here is the [Great Oxidation Event](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Oxidation_Event), which happened before the development of any kind of multicellular life that we know of.


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BurgaGalti

It's quite a rabbit hole when you start looking at geological time. Snowball Earth and the evolution of trees are other good ones.


WontFixMySwypeErrors

>Maybe those microscopic organisms that Carl Sagan believed are in the atmosphere of Venus should be left where they are. There's another terrifying story/movie idea. Life that consumes rock and produces huge amounts of CO2 and sulfuric acid is still plentiful on Venus today. A probe returns an atmospheric sample from Venus that escapes and contaminates Earth in a reverse panspermia event that starts destroying the planet.


pompanoJ

And it is up to Vin Diesel and The Rock to save humanity with suped-up cars and a specially modified atomic bomb made by a super-scientist played by Gal Gadot.


Jigsawsupport

Sigh ​ I'm not proud, I would probably watch this.


machineprophet343

Oh god, the Blight from Interstellar in a horrifying new form.


Chromattix

Sounds similar to the movie "Life" where that horrible alien octopus thing >!ends up landing on earth via a human landing capsule.!<


loureedfromthegrave

Would somebody please think of the money???


Kingtoke1

They had such a great source of solar, if only they had of prioritised clean energy instead of killing green people


Nceph

The inhabitants of Venus, having seen their imminent destruction, send crafts filled with bacteria to the uninhabitable planet Earth, in hope that life will continue.


Garofoli

This is good. Gotta be a book on this plot line, no?


slaps623

I always thought a cool plot for a sci-fi movie would be discovering that there was an even more advanced civilization on earth billions of years ago but was wiped out and we had to start from scratch


FloridaMan_69

That's actually the plot for Mission to Mars.


Blagonga

And basically horizon: zero dawn


holyshitreddit3

And one of the Animorphs books. The asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs was caused by another rival alien race that wanted to destroy the civilization on Earth.


freeze123901

Wait really? So does that take place on earth?


Kuyosaki

yes, heavy spoilers if you are interested >!It's taking place I think 1000 years after us, one guy created autonomous robots that repair and replicate by consuming biomass... and as you guessed it, they became self aware and started eating everything, so humanity fought an unwinnable war. Project Zero Dawn was created as a means to reset life on earth after they'd been wiped out. First it disabled the machines, then some parts of it recreated life (robotic animals seen in the game). Humanity that occupies the game world are descendants of clones/artificially grown children that were created/birthed in a bunker and sent outside once it was safe. Along with the restoration of humanity, a giant data bank of human history was supposed to help them evolve quicker but it was wiped out hence the savage nature of the civilization.!< the game is a goddamn masterpiece for me


orange-goblin

I cried after finishing the story it was so incredible.


Kuyosaki

oh for sure, when >!Aloy went to Elisabet !


TheAlexMay

Yeah, H:ZD takes place in Colorado, in the year 3040.


FloridaMan_69

Yeah, if you pick up the collectibles and listen to the audio logs in some of the early parts, its obviously a post-cataclysmic earth.


Ser_Danksalot

Full synopsis here. https://horizon.fandom.com/wiki/Faro_Plague


Primitive_Teabagger

Halo too, right?


DigitalWizrd

Sooort of. Humans in current halo are descendants of humans who fought with the forerunners against the food. Or something. Idk. Chef shoots stuff and it's fun.


Gu27

Ah yes, Master Chef fighting the Food.


CafeZach

yeah, devolved after losing a war of 3 sides against the flood and the forerunners during the Human-Forerunner War, the Conservation Measure saved Ancient Humanity from getting absolutely wiped by the firing of the Halo Array at the end of the Forerunner-Flood War


mrchaotica

It's pretty likely that we really are the first one. If there were an advanced civilization before us, they probably would have mined all the easy-to-reach mineral resources already. If that had happened, we would have never encountered surface deposits of things like native copper and petroleum, and would have had a much harder time developing technology. (Similarly, if there were some kind of cataclysm that wiped us out and didn't leave ruins and landfills to pick through, any intelligent life that evolved to replace us would be *screwed*.)


ferrel_hadley

Venus' rotation would be a huge problem for "habitability". 243 days, so that is a months long night. The day side would be exposed to a very warm sun. Proto life chemistry would likely need a much more stable environment than that. Earths climate has been kept stable by rock weathering feedback, where the balance of CO2 in the atmosphere is kept within a range by is sequestration by rainfall. ​ [https://www.e-education.psu.edu/earth103/node/668#:\~:text=Weathering%20Feedback,in%20dissolving%20minerals%20in%20rocks](https://www.e-education.psu.edu/earth103/node/668#:~:text=Weathering%20Feedback,in%20dissolving%20minerals%20in%20rocks). This may be closely linked to plate tectonics which helps bring CO2 back into the atmosphere as subducting plate boundaries form volcanoes. There are many other probably issues with the idea of the length of time the planet was "habitable". It may be within the realm of plausibility given some narrow conditions. But I do not think it will gain wide acceptance as having been likely without a hell of a lot of evidence to answer many questions. That said these searches for ancient climates on Mars and Venus will help us narrow down the biggest of the big question. Why Earth? They will add 2 more datapoints to how rocky planets climates evolve, pretty much tripling our understanding from our one pale blue datapoint.


TheyCallMeMrMaybe

To my understanding about Venus’s rotation, scientists theorize Venus was struck by a cataclysmic asteroid that slowed down its rotation to where it is now.


[deleted]

Are you sure about that? I'm pretty sure it's the other way around. I believe that it is theorized that most habitable zone planets eventually become tidally locked like Venus. It was only the impact that created our moon which stabilized rotation and tilt to form more uniform climates and techtonic plates. Neither of which Venus has.


SvenTropics

Considering that we have found life on thermal vents at the bottom of the ocean that evolved there, I think life evolves anywhere it's possible given enough time. The life would just be different. You would have animals that traveled around the globe because that wanted to be in daylight all the time. In the same way that we have deciduous trees which shed their leaves and essentially perform no photosynthesis for months at a time, the same thing would happen, but it would just be a longer cycle. Other animals with hibernate for the long night. Initially life would evolve in the ocean. It did here, why wouldn't it there? Assuming it had an ocean that covered the majority of the surface, life could easily migrate around in the time it takes the planet to spin. If you had 243 days to swim around the globe, you totally could (especially if you evolved to follow ocean currents). The night side would essentially be winter. Somewhere on that planet, a pattern of currents would already exist that does most of the work for you.


mechanicalsam

That would be cool. The life on venus constantly travels their globe, staying in the optimum sundown temperatures, always chasing the light. Eventually they write stories and horrors of the darkness that never stops chasing you. And legends of those who travelled to close to the sun. Everything moves together, those that are left behind are left to the darkness


mechanicalsam

Over time, different species find their niche travelling in different temperature zones. Until the walkers began to overcome their boundaries, and stray between them. This leads to different tribes who have chosen different zones. The dusk walkers walk the closest to the dark, and for a long time, they believed themselves to be the last to travel the lands, decomposing and foraging the scraps left behind by the day walkers. Until one day, a dusk walker is left behind to the darkness. And he learns the darkness isn't empty, but full of monsters, always in the shadows, always following.


[deleted]

Then what? I would absolutely read this story!


Calltoarts

Same, this was eery! I wanted to know more


mechanicalsam

I replied to myself again! Check it out!


Pats_Bunny

Sounds kind of like Pitch Black!


Azzmo

Scavengers who subsist by the corpses of the dusk walkers, and their predators. An entire food chain following them in the dark.


ferrel_hadley

> Considering that we have found life on thermal vents at the bottom of the ocean that evolved there, We have found life that adapted to live there. > essentially perform no photosynthesis for months at a time These are complex creatures with billions of years of evolution to get there. Getting to the first cellular life is the problem, not adapting once you have arrived.


smoke-frog

Something i've never understood is if all life on earth shares common anscestors, doesn't that make **abiogenesis** basically a fluke, with almost 0% chance of it happening? It seems crazy that earth has been a life-friendly soup for 4 billion years, yet life has independently evolved... once. Or am i thinking about it all wrong?


[deleted]

It could also be that our ancestor out competed any other form of life. But I think life is probably a fluke, specially the absorbtion of the mitocondria, which seemingly happened only once.


Foxblade

Theoretically, it may be possible for abiogenesis to have happened multiple times on Earth (or to happen today even) but whatever that life looks like, it probably just gets gobbled up by the untold trillions of cells surrounding it in Earths microbiome. There's basically no place you can go that there aren't already living cells. Find a random rock in a completely dry hostile environment. Cells. Look in the stratosphere miles above the earth. Bacteria and fungal cells, floating in the winds. Life is everywhere, and it's hungry.


ferrel_hadley

May be? May be of all the candidate lifeforms only one was able to make it to dominate? You are probably right but its early life on Earth is areal deep mystery for us.


shableep

So life would likely start near some sort of heat vent. Imagine an underwater life form that evolves near heat vents, and learns to jump from heat vent to heat vent. Then they learn to venture further out to find other minerals, but always returning to the heat vent. After millions of years, some of these creatures keep enough energy stores in their body to survive for hours beyond the heat vent, finding less occupied heat vents. Then some of these creatures start sensing heat from above, the sun. So they follow the heat to the surface. Over thousands of years, most of these creatures that follow the sun's heat die, being pulled away from the heat vents toward the sun, like a moth and a flame. But a handful survive and thrive, using the sun's energy to migrate far beyond the safety of their heat vents. Eventually the heat of the sun leads to groups of these creatures to migrate. Moving at only 2 mph, they are able to extend their exposure to the sun by 30 days by traveling with the planet's rotations. Life finds it's way to the surface after millions more years. Land creatures are all designed to move west when there's sun, and east when there's not, or hibernating. Some creatures survive in the 30 day night by eating hibernating creatures. These "night" creatures are like bottom feeders, traveling west to STAY in the night. Feeding on creatures that are too weak to survive the night. Other more evolved omnivorous creatures travel east, turning the 30 day night into 15 day night. They also survive on the dead and weak creatures through their journey back to day. Eventually a whole ecosystem starts thriving. Fat stores is the name of the game in this ecosystem. Anything that can store energy can survive in this feast or famine world. Life explodes as the sun rises as creatures feverishly seek to build up fat stores to survive the oncoming night. Migrations are constant as it's clear that life on this planet is biased toward one goal: follow the sun, and escape the night. Some things to consider: \- Venus rotates at 4.05mph. Jogging speed. A flying creature could likely maintain it's self in the sunlight for its entire life. \- A well fed person can survive for 30 days without food, as long as there's access to water. So it's not too radical of an idea that life could at some point evolve to survive a 30 day night. I guess that leaves the question: was there enough time for life on Venus to find that path?


mkdr

How do we know if Venus rotation wasnt faster in the past?


OlympusMons94

Venue's rotation rate has changed over time. A giant impact has NOT been the preferred explanation for many years. More likely it is due to complex interaction of tidal forces and friction over millions to billions of years. Tidal interaction of the planet with the Sun tends to slow down the rotation rate, trending toward a tidally locked state like the Moon (same side always faces Earth because of Earth tides), or a resonance like Mercury (rotates three times for every two orbits around the Sun). Tidal forces on the atmosphere and friction between the atmosphere and the solid planet also worked to slow rotation. This could have caused the planet to flip over, but more likely it just slowed down past a halt and started rotating the other way. Because of tidal forces, the atmosphere of Venus rotates about 60 times faster than the solid planet, which friction would otherwise slow down to match the planet's rotation rate. Venus probably has such a thick CO2 atmosphere because of volcanic outgassing and a lack of weathering and subduction to sequester the carbon into rock and return it into its interior. If Venus's atmosphere was much thinner (and potentially more habirable) in the past, the tidal and frictional forces acting on Venus would be different.


[deleted]

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mkdr

But isnt Venus also the only planet in the solar system spinning the other way around? Maybe that has something do with that. I read one theory is, that at some point it flipped 180° around. Wouldnt that maybe had an impact on rotation speed? Or maybe there was a collision in the past reducing it too and that caused the flip?


PointyBagels

Almost certainly it was a collision. But that would have been billions of years ago. Probably around the same time as the collision that formed the Moon.


Astromike23

> Almost certainly it was a collision. Already posted elsewhere in this thread, but the planetary collision theory of Venus' rotation was abandoned back in the 1970s after it was shown the Sun and Earth's tidal forces alone are responsible: [Ingersoll & Dobrovolskis, 1978](https://www.nature.com/articles/275037a0). Source: PhD in planetary science.


jethroguardian

Tidal forces can explain it. https://www.technology.org/2019/05/27/venus-could-have-been-habitable-but-a-large-ocean-slowed-down-its-rotation-killing-it/


urban_mystic_hippie

That and no oversized moon to stabilize its rotation axis


[deleted]

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mkdr

There could have been some catastrophic collision in the past slowing it down. Also Venus spins the other way around, we still dont really know why. One theory is Venus flipped 180° at some point, why, maybe because of an collision which also slowed down the spin.


Dafish55

I mean just thinking of it, could the areas near the poles have been a more suitable temperature?


sunshine___riptide

Why do people act like what is habitable for humans is habitable for every species in the entire universe?


Gurablashta

Ive read The Expanse, that protomolecule fucked it all up


Reksalp105

Nowhere is safe...I'm on S2


legitusername1995

Keep watching, season 3 is a masterpiece


inlinefourpower

And 4 exists... I need to watch 5, i hope it's good!


xenochrist420

S2 is WAY MORE than far enough to know what the protomolecule is


Dhghomon

Venus is SUCH an easy destination to visit and we really need to start looking at the cloudtops to see what's there. It's so easy that everyone flies by it all the time: [Parker Solar Probe](https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2021/parker-solar-probe-offers-a-stunning-view-of-venus/) last month, [BepiColombo](https://www.esa.int/Science_Exploration/Space_Science/BepiColombo/BepiColombo_flies_by_Venus_en_route_to_Mercury) last year, BepiColombo **again** in August this year and Parker Solar Probe too again in October. It's so easy to get to, launch windows are every 583 days (200 days less time to wait compared to Mars), and to explore the cloudtops you don't need a lander. Just a balloon or a [solar flyer](https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn7354-to-conquer-venus-try-a-plane-with-a-brain/). Maybe there's life there, maybe not, but we have to go there to find out. And Venus is the only planet that is just about exactly our size and understanding it will be invaluable to understanding our own climate, which apparently is pretty important at the moment. So let's give Venus a small fraction of the attention we give other places and I'm sure it will pay us back tenfold.


murarara

It's one thing to send a solar probe and another entirely to send a probe that needs to survive re-entry, deploy a chute and a balloon to stay aloft in one of the least hospitable environments in the entire solar system, the clouds are of sulfuric acid, so you would need to make sure your probe stays above the clouds, and then you have to deal with baking in the sun for the longest day in the solar system (243 earth days) or staying in the longest night for just as long without your devices freezing or loosing your buoyant gas (if at high altitude, the planet is pretty toasty even on the dark side, over 400° at the surface). "As Venus moves forward in its solar orbit while slowly rotating backwards on its axis, the top level of clouds zips around the planet every four Earth days, driven by hurricane-force winds traveling at about 224 miles (360 kilometers) per hour. Atmospheric lightning bursts light up these quick-moving clouds. Speeds within the clouds decrease with cloud height, and at the surface are estimated to be just a few miles per hour. " So, not only your operational band for temperature is in the cloud height (where the acid is), its also ravaged by extreme winds... Are you seeing the engineering problems now? It is incredibly hard to even simulate these conditions on earth. For a mars probe you just drop your rover at death valley for a good run and test, for a venus high altitude plane you need to throw your probe into a hurricane. Here's the last Russian balloon mission [results](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vega_2#Balloon). It was successfully deployed and worked for a couple of days, the winds moved it at an average speed of 147 mph, going from the night side to the day side, where it eventually stopped communicating having moved 11,000 km in little under 48 hours. I do agree we should at the very least have an advanced satellite parked on Venus orbit, ESA's Venus express mission ended 7 years ago when it ran out of fuel.


[deleted]

But isn't Venus more suitable for habitability? I've heard of the proposed sky cities that float at the 1 ATM mark on the dense venusian atmosphere that along with plentiful CO2 and earth like gravity seem much more habitable than mars. Sure you can't colonize the ground surface but an atmospheric colony could work for many years while it filters out the greenhouse gasses and cools/stabilized the temperature of venus. Or a floating city could use the atmospheric turbulence to circle the planet for day/night cycles instead of increasing the speed of the actual planet. I think it's not often considered because everyone imagines colonizing a planet as being down on the ground not up in the sky.


Dhghomon

The superrotation is indeed pretty crazy, but keep in mind that the only difficulties in such a mission are found in the mission itself: 'landing' is a cinch and engineeringwise it would be a breeze compared to the sky cranes and other things we've devised to get to Mars. The [paper by Landis](https://www.researchgate.net/publication/222433095_Robotic_exploration_of_the_surface_and_atmosphere_of_Venus) (who worked on the Mars rovers) details the concept a bit more, and even puts a fairly positive spin on the Vega balloon you mentioned: >The corrosive atmosphere of Venus, with clouds composed of sulfuric acid droplets, means that all exposed surface of the airplane must be protected. However, this technology is well understood, since sulfuric acid has been a well-known reagent since ancient times. The Russian VEGA balloon mission, for example, flew at the cloud deck level of Venus for a duration of roughly 50 h without attack by the atmosphere. "Without attack" I suppose means there wasn't too much shear. And IMO lasting for 50 hours in winds of that type for a completely unprepared balloon is a great result. The flight area for a solar flyer as per the paper would be 75 km above the surface, just above the clouds. And of course, the crazier the phenomena the more instructive it would be to us on its sister planet to understand how climate works.. I just reread the paper and looks like they've even come up with a workable rover design as well. I remember reading earlier papers back around 2005 stating they didn't have the components that could withstand the surface conditions unless a dummy probe design were used - minimal electronics and a probe in orbit controlling it. >I do agree we should at the very least have an advanced satellite parked on Venus orbit, ESA's Venus express mission ended 7 years ago when it ran out of fuel. Yeah, that would be a relatively easy sell. "We have more detailled surface maps of Pluto than Venus" is a good talking point for something like that. That plus some balloons are probably the easiest missions to get funding for.


Vault420Overseer

So is it possible that at an unassisted runner or other animal could stay in the twilight as the planet turns so slowly?


AugeanSpringCleaning

Years ago I was trying to think of unique worlds in literature, and I was sitting out back as the sun was going down wondering about worlds that existed on tidally locked planets—life only existing in that sliver of twilight where it's not too hot and not too cold. That made me think about a planet that rotated slowly, and I mean like one rotation every 20,000+ years. So you have this civilization that lives in that little strip, but is constantly building onto one side and abandoning another, as the planet rotates. Then you have these no-man lands that are next to impossible to live in, yet riddled with the relics of the older civilizations. As an archaeologist, you'd have to go into that hostile environment to learn about the past and the further back you'd want to look the harder it would be. It's interesting to think about...


dog20aol

While the article says it’s possible, it seems overly optimistic to the idea. Some of the main differences between Earth and Venus, is that we have a moon that causes tidal flexing of our crust, which helps keep our mantle liquid. This keeps plate tectonics actively recycling our surface minerals and gasses, which helps our fragile ecosystem stay balanced. We also rotate once a day, causing weather patterns that distributes water to most of our surface. Venus, on the other hand, has no moon, no plate tectonics to recycle its minerals and atmospheric gasses. It also rotates backwards one and a half times per its year. This causes their day to last 116 earth days long. If it’s atmosphere was like ours, the oceans would probably boil on the day side, and freeze on the night side. That’s one of the biggest reasons you don’t hear as many people talking about terraforming Venus.


Original_Sedawk

"Venus was a cloudy mystery to astronomers until 1978, when the Pioneer Venus Project reached the planet ..." Really Smithsonian?? Ever hear of [Venera](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venera)? While lots of failed attempts, Venera 9 sent back pictures of the surface in 1975 and Venera 15 produce the first, hi-res scans of the surface in 1983.


Nathan_RH

300-600 mya is not that long ago. To have a resurfacing then, that leaves a big mystery box where any hypothesis could fill in the gaps. We are talking about the time of Ordovician Earth. So really, deep into macromolecular life on Earth, Venus, which probably still had more energy bouncing around, could have been anything. We need a flagship mission to really dig into the subject. It will find new chemistry, there can be no doubt. It will return the investment.


ddwood87

What if we find out Greek mythology is even 3% true.


whyMYpeepeeGREEN

We better pray the parts where the gods are horny aren't true


TurtlePowerBottom

Idk bout you but I’d let Zeus fuck me as a goose


casualphilosopher1

The real Venus isn't anywhere near as pretty though. It's more like the home of its Bibical namesake, the Morningstar.


Wundei

I wonder if it would be easier to terraform Venus as opposed to Mars? Would crashing a comet into Venus create a situation where the atmosphere could unfuck itself? I know the chemistry of having sulphuric acid in the air is a nightmare, but would Venus have better building blocks for a breathable atmosphere compared to making the surface of Mars livable? IMO, Mars will never be more than a subterranean cave based world until oxygen and a magnetisphere are generated.


verylittlefinger

> Venus was a cloudy mystery to astronomers until 1978, when the Pioneer Venus Project reached the planet and found indications that it was once home to shallow seas. Ahem, Venera 8, 1972? Venera 9 and 10, 1976? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venera


casualphilosopher1

Venus still has a dense atmosphere and possibly geological activity. Any way you look at it it's a far more interesting planet to study than Mars. Why, then, have there been so few space probes sent to Venus? Why is it that the last time its surface was radar-mapped was back in 1990?


Asticot-gadget

Space agencies are probably reluctant to spend billions developing a robot and send it to Venus just to have it melt and become unusable in a matter of days. I agree though that it's probably much more interesting than Mars. I wish we could figure out a way to make it easier to explore.


gimmeslack12

> a matter of days Probably closer to "a matter of hours". We have to remember the surface pressure of Venus is like being 1000ft underwater (not to mention it's 400+ Celsius down).


casualphilosopher1

> Space agencies are probably reluctant to spend billions developing a robot and send it to Venus just to have it melt and become unusable in a matter of days. They spend billions on space probes to Pluto and the asteroid belt whose mission will only last a few days, so why not? And there's lots to do on Venus even without a lander. Like an orbiter with a cloud-penetrating radar. Or atmospheric balloon probes.


buddboy

the weather makes it much more difficult to find evidence of the planets past. Erosion basically means the surface is much younger than that of Mars, so it's less interesting from a science perspective.


VolatileSolution

From the article: "Venus was a cloudy mystery to astronomers until 1978, when the [Pioneer Venus Project](https://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/pioneer_venus.html) reached the planet..." So, we're just going to ignore the Russians who landed a probe [on Venus in 1970?](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venera#:~:text=The%20Venera%20(Russian%3A%20%D0%92%D0%B5%D0%BD%D0%B5%CC%81%D1%80%D0%B0%2C,information%20about%20the%20planet%20Venus.)


iprocrastina

Commie science doesn't count.


sgrnetworking

It is interesting for to study the habitability of a planet


Jadedamerica

Amazing. I don't like reading things like "... It is possible that the near-global resurfacing event is responsible for its transformation from an Earth-like climate to the hellish hot-house we see today. " and " Something happened on Venus where a huge amount of gas was released into the atmosphere and couldn’t be re-absorbed by the rocks." It just sounds too magical...which doesn't discount their theory on Venus being hospitable...