South polar vortex at Venus

South polar vortex at Venus

Fig. 7.7 . The core of a whirling polar vortex shines brightly in this infrared image taken on 9 August 2007 from the Venus Express spacecraft. The vortex, which resembles the eye of a hurricane on Earth, is located near the south pole of Venus. The 2000-kilometer-wide vortex was first discovered from the Mariner 10 flyby of Venus on 5 February 1974. There is a similar structure near the planetís north pole, which was observed from Venus Express. The central part of the southern vortex is very dynamic, changing shape within a matter of days, including the formation of a double-eye. (Courtesy of ESA.)

Copyright 2010, Professor Kenneth R. Lang, Tufts University