Study of Venus cloud layers by polarimetry using SPICAV/VEx

Abstract : Understanding the structure and dynamics of Venus' clouds is essential as they have a strong impact on the radiative balance and atmospheric chemistry of the planet. Polarimetry has greatly contributed to our knwoledge about the properties of the cloud layers located between 48 and ∼ 70 km. Hansen and Hovenier (1974), using ground-based observations, found the cloud particles to be ∼ 1 µm spherical droplets, with a refractive index corresponding to a concentrated sulfuric acid-water solution. Later, Kawabata et al. (1980), using polarimetric data from OCPP onboard Pioneer Venus retrieved the properties of the haze: effective radius of ∼ 0.25 µm, refractive indices consistent with a sulfuric acid-water solution, variance of the particle size distribution. We introduce here new measurements obtained with the SPICAV-IR spectrometer onboard ESA's Venus Express. Observing Venus in the visible and IR from 650 nm to 1625 nm with a good spatial and temporal converage, SPICAV's sensitivity to the degree of linear polarization gives us an opportunity to put better constraints on haze and cloud particles at Venus cloud top, as well as their spatial and temporal variability.
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Loïc Rossi, Emmanuel Marcq, Franck Montmessin, Anna Fedorova, Daphne Stam, et al.. Study of Venus cloud layers by polarimetry using SPICAV/VEx. EGU General Assembly 2015, Apr 2015, Vienna, Austria. pp.EGU2015-1656. ⟨insu-01144092⟩

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