Steve Massey's Astronomy Page HOMEDeepSky Pictures


Venus Data

Venus 2018

Above: Venus ( 8th August 2018 ) with 685nm pass filter and new ProStar Concorde 290M camera. Camera output was clocking at 275 frames per second! Unfortunately my old computer and drive can't write the AVI files at that speed.

Even though the above image is from a colour camera without any special filters used, dusky markings in the planets upper clouds can just be made out and show subtly in the blue channel. The planets dusky appearance was quite obvious at the eyepiece on this occasion.
Venus 2016 - GSTAR-EX2 camera

Venus at 350nm ultra-violet and 1000 nm near infrared wavelengths GSTAR-EX2

Venus UV 350nm  29th October 2016 Venus UV 350nm  26th October 2016 Venus UV 350nm  28th October 2016
Venus 1-micron filter 22nd December 2013
Venus December 24th 2013
Crescent phase image from 24th December 2013 with GSTAR-EX camera and ProStar 5X tele-negative lens
Crescent phase image from 24th December 2013 with GSTAR-EX camera and ProStar 5X tele-negative lens and 12-inch Sky-Watcher Newtonian telescope. It was a refreshing reminder when this planet presents such a large angular diameter just how easy it is to see visually its crescent phase even in a simple 6 X 30 mm finder scope. Unfortunately this evening, a long band of cloud made it impossible in the later hours to take any useful images in the thermal near infrared wavelength.


Venus 1 micron image 26th Dec 2013
Venus 1 micron image 26th Dec 2013
Very subtle post processing used
12-inch Newtonian @f/10
Camera - GSTAR-EX






Venus night side imaged in near infrared
Venus 19 and 20th December 2005 Venus 2005 NIR

Phase: 16.5% - South is up.

This 1-um image of Venus shows the planets night side (see details below). A large dark region can be seen near bottom left placed roughly where Beta Regio is situated. It may be coincidental dense cloud. Images taken in far poorer seeing on the 28th of December for confirmation were inconclusive.

JULY -2004
VENUS (1-micron)

Venus Infrared 2004 and 2005


Inspired by David Grinspoon's book "Venus Revealed I planned for my first 1-micron attempt to capture a glimpse of the planets night side in early 2004. My first 1-micron observation successful observation happened in the morning hours on the 2nd July 2004. I was fortunate enough to be perhaps the 2nd ever amateur to take in this view some weeks after another amateur astronomer in France.

Unfortunately it was a large oak tree next door that blocked my western view during that part of the apparition. Needless to say, I had to wait until the planets morning apparition to try again. Indeed on the 2nd of July 2004 the magic moment I had waited for became reality despite poor quality of the early morning seeing but on April 4th (image at left) I was overwhelmed at the result both live on the video monitor and in later processing. Despite the smaller aperture telescope used in this result, compared the initial result from France, more distinctive detail show clearly in my image at left from the 4th July 2004.

I'd like to sincerely thank Steve Lee and also Dr. Jeremy Bailey of the Anglo-Australian Observatory for both their help and review of the initial images in July 04' and for help with identifying the subtle dark markings present in them.

The planets sunlit side has been drastically over-exposed to enable the CCD to record the faint infrared thermal surface emissions of the night side.

The image is a stack of several hundred video frames contrast enhanced using Registax and PhotoShop. Dark and flat field frames were also used during processing of the images.

At lower left: a global near infrared view of the planet at 1-micron from two apparitions for illustrative purposes only. North is up. Venus from 2004 morning apparition and 2005 evening apparition when the planets lit side was around 16 to 17%

Dark patches on the night side are most likely dense cloud formations silhouetted against the thermal radiation from the surface. Comparing the changed shapes and apparent movement with images taken 2 days earlier and also attempting to correlate the patches with possible cooler topographical regions against Magellan radar maps for this longitude, general opinion seems to confirm this.

Comparing results of the broader pass characteristics of the RG-1000 filter I've been using to some modern 1-micron filters having steeper cut off curves does appear to reveal slight differences in upper atmospheric cloud densities relative to cooler regions of surface topography. 

Venus night side


Night & Day

A short exposure of Venus taken is placed side by side here with the highly over-exposed 1um filtered exposure revealing the scale of day and night sides of the planet.

Australia's best astronomy magazine See announcement in Oz Sky & Telescope magazine January 2005 issue.

Venus Transit 2012
Venus Transit 2012 from Hervey Bay Queensland Venus Transit 2012 from Hervey Bay QLD - Near 2nd contact with Thousand Oaks 0.9A solar filter and 60mm Vixen refractor. The seeing was very poor and the Sun low to the East hence the slightly warped disk shape of the planet. 










Venus transits the Sun in June 2012

Venus Transit 2004

The amazing transit of Venus as seen from Sydney on the 8th of June 2004. A truly spectacular event to witness both at the eyepiece on the video monitor. I was quite surprised by the complete absence of the "black drop effect" even though it was highly anticipated based on historical accounts from previous observations.  The seeing was very good from my observing site and I'd hoped to witness at least some evidence of refracted sunlight around the upper clouds of Venus during the progressive stages from contact 1 to contact 2 by adjusting the cameras gain and shutter speed settings to maximum values. Such an effect was not detected. Visit the animations page to see a rough short sequence mpeg movie of the transit as seen from my observing site.


Venus Transit 2004


Venus Transit stages 2004


Changing Phases of Venus

Changing phases of Venus


Clouds Tops of Venus

Right: Venus imaged with a U filter and Astrovid 2000 video camera on March 5th 2004. Subtle banding can be seen in the upper clouds. Processed using Registax and Photoshop. Telescope 250mm SkyWatcher Newtonian.

Venus cloud bands

Right: Venus July and August 2013 with a Baader U-filter and GSTAR-EX2 video camera. Classic "Y" pattern is seen in the July image at left.



Venus in Ultra-violtet light 2013
Venus at Dichotomy

venus2001a.jpg (7283 bytes)


Right: Daytime video image of Venus taken on the 27th of October 2002 only 1.25% illuminated !!!



VENUSSteve Massey - Astronomy