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Designing a
 Self-Sustaining
Industrial Presence on
'The Evening Star'

Creating a plan for a permanent, self sustaining presence on Venus
that harnesses Venusian resources for the benefit of
all terrestrial planets in our Solar System.


Venus is Earth's closest neighbour and one of the least explored. We ask the question
'Is Venus a suitable location for establishing a permanent industrial presence that can feed resources to other planets in place of Earth?' We definitely think so.

Why Venus?

It turns our Venus is quite rich in many available natural resources required to sustain a long term presence in space including being able to offer bountiful reserves of heat, electricity, pressure and industrial chemical precursors dissolved in an easily refined supercritical atmosphere. 

It makes for an intriguing place to consider. Just what resources can Venus offer to us? 

Looking at the Numbers

The case for visiting Venus is strong, but you don't have to take our word for it. Compare the starting paramaters and make your own conclusion.  If you agree that its worth investigating, we welcome your input in the Starship Venus discissions. 
(Details courtesy of NASA)  

Property Venus
at 55km
Altitude
Earth Mars Outcomes
Gravity (m/s^2)8.79.83.7Long term exposure to low gravity environments damages human health and some industrial processes need gravity. 
Mean Temperature (deg C)2715-65Mean temperatures closer to that of Earth's reduce themal engineering complexity and energy needs.
Air Pressure (bar)0.510.006Walking on Mars requires bulky full-pressure suits and pressurised habitats. Venus needs only protective gear and breathing support and sealed but not pressurised habitats. 
Atmospheric Mass (kg)4.8 x 10^20 5.1 x 10^18 2.5 x 10^16 The Venusian atmosphere is two magnitudes greater Earth and its at a higher density. As an example even though the atmosphere is only 3% Nitrogen it still contains three times more Nitrogen than Earth's atmosphere.
Solar Irradiance (W/m2)  26011361586Solar panel of the same area on Venus generate almost 100% more power than Earth and 450% more power than on Mars. Interestingly, the clouds are also so reflective you get power reflected off the planet as pointing at the sun.
Freely Available
Biogenic Compounds
H N O C S H N O C P S H N O C SVenus can provide these in gaseous form, Mars deposits are gasseous and sulphur is on the surface. 
Radiation ProtectionWeak Induced
Magnetic Field
and Atmospheric
Strong Magnetic
Field
and Atmospheric
NoneHeavy radiation shielding is required on Mars, whereas simpler shielding must ve considered on Venus, Venus may also be able to provide Lead (Pb) for shielding. Venus' proximity to the Sun's immense magnetic field also partially shields it from cosmic rays. 
Habitat AtmosphereSealed Open biomeSealed and pressurised
Generating a habitat atmosphere needs less engineering on Venus than on Mars because the Venusian habitat doesn't require pressurising.  Both need chemical reforming of the habitat gasses, but Mars also needs atmospheric concentration and generation.
Atmosphere QualityCorrosiveIdealThinBoth Venus and Mars atmoshphere have problems to overcome. Here you choose your poison.
Aerobraking, Aerogravity
assist and Aerocapture
EasierEasierHarderA thicker atmosphere allows spacecraft to use the aerodynamic forces to modify orbits and enter orbit with far less complexity and therefore risk and cost.
Atmospheric Density (kg/m^3) > 1.51.2170.020 An O2/ N2 Air mix on Venus is a floating gas, even though the pressure at 55km is only 0.5 Bar, the composition makes it slightly more dense than the 
Discussion topics we need to address in detail include: 

  1. VENUSIAN PHYSICS & MECHANICS
    How to get there, what's the environment like and what physical properties can we take advantage of. The interplanetary tradeoff is a complicated discussion.  Discuss >
  2. RESOURCES & ECONOMIC RATIONALE
    Humans move to places that efficiently provide them the most resources to thrive. Choices for interplanetary settlements should be no different. Discuss >
  3. SOCIAL, CULTURAL and LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS
    Humans are driven by social and cultural imperatives above all else, as well as the current politically acceptable reasons for space travel. Let us know your reason.  Discuss >
  4. KEY ENGINEERING APPLICATIONS
    In-situ resource utilization (ISRU), advanced robotics, habitat design, thermal regulation, electricity generation, drones, variable density atmospheric submersibles, FlyBy mining, corrosion resistance, maintenance, high temperature electronics and closed loop systems will be vital for successful long term presence on Venus. Minimising complexity will be key. The enginerring challenges along with the economic rationale will answer the question, should the presence on Venus be robotic, human or both? Discuss >
  5. HEALTH AND MEDICAL  ISSUES
    Humans want not just to survive but to thrive in the long term environment. Success will be dictated by physical, mental and spiritual health. Discuss > 

The Evolving Proposal

As our discussion develops, we'll put together interim reports with concrete reasoning for choosing Venus as a place to mine, and send resources to other celestial bodies. The report will provide ever evolving recommendations for exploring Venus. In its final form the report will present a comprehensive mission proposal as a blueprint to visit Earth's closest and richest neighbour. 

Apply for a Position In the Starship Venus Team

We're looking for forum category leaders and also proposal editors for each section of the current proposal. If you work in the space domain, please apply. We regularly publish new position descriptions to the staff section of the forum as they become available. 

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Don't hesitate to contact us

Ready for offers and cooperation

Phone: +61 407 902 600
Email: hello@starshipvenus.org

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Address

PO Box 6008                    
EAST PERTH WA
6892 AUSTRALIA

Contacts

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Interesting Links

VEXAG - NASA's Venus Exploration and Analysis Group
ESA  - Venus Express
ATASUKI - JAXA's Venus Climate Orbiter