Planetary Atmospheres

Cover Page/Proposal Summary

ROSS-00    NRA 00-OSS-01

Date Due: 4/28/2000


This proposal shall be used and disclosed for evaluation purposes only, and a copy of this Government notice shall be applied to any reproduction or abstract thereof. Any authorized restrictive notices that the submitter places on this proposal shall also be strictly complied with. Disclosure of this proposal for any reason outside the Government evaluation purposes shall be made only to the extent authorized by the Government.

Proposal Type: New Proposal

Proposal Category: Atmosphere Structures and Particles

Major Equipment Proposal? No

Do you intend to submit an Education/Public Outreach (E/PO) proposal? No

Proposal Title:
Evolution of the Atmosphere and Clouds of Venus

Abbreviated Proposal Title:
Evolution of the Atmosphere and Clouds of Venus

Principal Investigator:
Dr. Mark Bullock
Department of Space Studies
Southwest Research Institute
1050 Walnut St., Suite 426
Boulder, CO 80302
Phone: 303-546-9027   Fax: 303-546-9687   E-mail: bullock@boulder.swri.edu


Co-Investigators and Collaborators:
Type    Name    Affiliation    E-mail
Sci Co-I   Dr. David H. Grinspoon   Funky Science   david@funkyscience.net
Sci Collab   Dr. Sean C. Solomon   Carnegie Institution of Washington   scs@dtm.ciw.edu
Sci Collab   Dr. Roger J. Phillips   Washington University   phillips@wustite.wustl.edu

Proposal Summary:

We propose a theoretical investigation of the recent evolution of climate on Venus. The geological history of Venus, as revealed by Magellan, is now detailed enough to provide significant constraints on the history of its climate. We will use Venus' geological record to test and refine models of the evolution of its atmosphere and clouds. Our climate models incorporate feedbacks between temperature dependent surface/atmosphere reactions and the radiative effects of clouds and greenhouse gases, which evolve in response to volcanic sources of volatiles. This project consists of the following tasks: We will (1) incorporate a detailed microphysical cloud model of Venus into the climate models, (2) use improvements in H2SO4/H2O optical constants, near-UV absorber treatment and estimates of geological sources of volatiles, (3) develop models of the coupling between surface temperature, mantle convection and partial melt efficiency, (4) study the role that impacts may have had in recent (1 Gy) changes in the clouds and atmosphere, and (5) provide an improved understanding of the history of water on Venus using constraints from cometary D/H and improved exospheric escape modeling. The surface of Venus records a series of volcanic and tectonic events that have both altered Venus' atmosphere and clouds and provided a signature of climate change. The globally synchronous formation of wrinkle ridges on the most widespread volcanic plains unit, emplaced in less than 100 My, were most likely due to the propagation of a climate-induced thermal wave that deformed the surface. In contrast, smaller, more recent volcanic events were insufficient to alter temperatures enough to cause surface deformation. Using the improvements to our climate models from tasks 1-5 above, we will produce models of the last 1 Gy of Venus atmosphere and cloud evolution that are consistent with the detailed global stratigraphy and volcanic history that are now becoming available.

Certification of Compliance with Applicable Executive Orders and U.S. Code

By submitting the proposal identified in this Cover Sheet/Proposal Summary in response to this NRA or AO, the Authorizing Official of the proposing institution (or the individual proposer if there is no proposing institution) as identified below:

  • certifies that the statements made in this proposal are true and complete to the best of his/her knowledge;
  • agrees to accept the obligations to comply with NASA award terms and conditions if an award is made as a result of this proposal; and
  • confirms compliance with all provisions, rules, and stipulations set forth in the three Certifications contained in this NRA [namely, (i) Certification Regarding Debarment, Suspension, and Other Responsibility Matters Primary Cover Transactions, (ii) Certification Regarding Lobbying, and (iii) Certification of Compliance with the NASA Regulations Pursuant to Nondiscrimination in Federally Assisted Programs].
    Willful provision of false information in this proposal and/or its supporting documents, or in reports required under an ensuing award, is a criminal offense (U.S. Code, Title 18, Section 1001).

    Authorizing Official #1:
    Mr. Ron Kalmbach
    Director of Contracts
    Southwest Research Institute
    P.O. Drawer 28510
    San Antonio, Texas 78228-0510
    Phone: (210) 522-2261   Fax: (210) 522-3359   E-mail: rkalmbach@swri.edu

    Type of Institution: Nonprofit, Nonacademic Organization