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A NASA probe detected a strange radio signal in Venus' atmosphere last year. Astronomers have figured out where it came from

Posted On: May 18, 2021   |   Posted By: Business Insider

NASA's Parker Solar Probe snapped an up-close view of Venus when it flew by the planet in July 2020.
NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Naval Research Laboratory/Guillermo Stenborg and Brendan Gallagher
NASA's Parker Solar Probe detected a strange radio signal while flying by Venus in July.
The probe flew through Venus' upper atmosphere, where such signals naturally occur, to collect data.
The data show Venus' atmosphere has thinned, a process linked to solar activity.
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During a close flyby of the planet Venus on July 11, 2020, NASA's Parker Solar Probe detected something odd. As it dipped just 517 miles above the Venusian surface, the probe's instruments recorded a low-frequency radio signal - a telltale sign that Parker had skimmed through the ionosphere, a layer of the planet's upper atmosphere. This was the first time an instrument had been able to directly record measurements of Venus' upper atmosphere in nearly three decades, and the data gives us a new understanding of...

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