Venus: Vulcan’s Playground
In this painting of Venus, we stand beneath an overwhelmingly oppressive overcast sky, barely relieved by any hint of cloud features due to an extensive aerosol layer of sulfuric acid haze that begins about 30 km above the surface. Our location is within a volcanic caldera characterized by extensive lava flows, rifts, volcanic cones and resurgent domes. In the distance one volcano had evidently undergone a lateral blast that had explosively blown out an amphitheater on its flank, producing a landslide and thick deposits from the resulting pyroclastic flows. Arranged along the contour of the terrain are complex drainage conduits that have conducted less viscous fluid flows from effusive eruptions, where they can be seen converging and breeching a gap in a ridge through a distant canyon. Throughout the foreground one can spy crannies and hollows and 'skylights' leading to subterranean lava tubes.
Original Painting © by A.A.Schaller & Donna Tracy - OmniCosm Studios for Griffith Observatory, December-January 2005-2006
13050x9900p at 300ppi (FOV width~82 degrees; ~160 pixels/degree)