Comments on a cultural reality between past and future.

This blog describes Metatime in the Posthuman experience, drawn from Sir Isaac Newton's secret work on the future end of times, a tract in which he described Histories of Things to Come. His hidden papers on the occult were auctioned to two private buyers in 1936 at Sotheby's, but were not available for public research until the 1990s.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

From Russia with Love: Life on Venus

Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women (1968; watch it here, or see below). Image Source: Horror News.

A report at i09 observes that one Russian scientist is publishing claims that the Russians found life on Venus back in the '80s.  I think a lot of people found life on Venus back in the '80s, but OK, OK.

Cosmonauts in trouble on Venus.  Planeta Bur (Планета Бурь; 1962) Image Source: Wiki.

Move over Apollo 18, because new information is being published regarding the 1982 Venera mission. I09:
the new paper by Russian astronomer Leonid Ksanfomaliti, due to appear in the Russian publication Solar System Research, seems to sit slightly outside the scientific consensus. He says that photos taken in 1982 by the Venera 13 probe, which visited Venus in March of that year, depict a "disk", a "black flap", and, perhaps most boldly, "a scorpion." He says the objects "emerge, fluctuate and disappear" in different photographs that were taken from various vantage points, which leads him to what even he admits is an extremely bold claim:
"What if we forget about the current theories about the non-existence of life on Venus? Let's boldly suggest that the objects' morphological features would allow us to say that they are living."
It's hard to say anything for certain without looking at the actual evidence - his article doesn't seem to be online yet - but obviously these claims seem extremely dubious, and this sounds like it's probably just a trick of the light, assuming there's anything there to begin with. So yeah, just to be clear, this is almost certainly nothing.

If you want to play extremophile devil's advocate here, it's worth noting that we've discovered microbes here on Earth that can survive at pressures up to a thousand times that of Earth's surface, which is far worse than what's found on Venus. You could probably find extremophiles here on Earth that could handle the acidity and radiation of Venus, but the 900 degree temperatures are the big deal-breaker here - a 2003 study suggests that the upper temperature limit for any form of life is probably about 300 degrees, as DNA starts to break apart and lose coherence at that point. So, basically, even a tiny, microbial extremophile is almost certainly impossible on the Venusian surface, let alone a scorpion or disc or black flap.
For recent data on Venus, check out the ESA's Venus Express page, here. One tabloid speculates that this strange Russian article is part of publicity to discredit the American space program.

A Venusian almost like the space spiders in Apollo 19. Image Source: Weekly World News.
Disks that seem to move are camera lens caps, taken by different cameras? Image Source: MSNBC.

SYNOPSIS of the above film: “In the distant future of 1998, six months after the collision of a meteor and subsequent explosion of a rocket sent to Venus, the team composed by the astronauts Kern and Sherman with the robot John is launched to explore Venus. They arrive in the Space Station Texas for refueling but they have problems while landing in Venus. Without communication, another rocket is launched with Commander Brendan Lockhart, Andre Ferneau and Hans Walter to rescue the first team and explore the planet. They use a vehicle to seek Kern and Sherman, but they are attacked by a flying reptile. They kill the animal without knowing that it is worshiped and considered the God Terah by Venusian ... women that use their powerful connection with nature to destroy the invaders. Meanwhile John helps the two cosmonauts to survive in the hostile land.” (courtesy IMDB) This film about Venusian space women was based on a 1962 Russian movie entitled, Planeta Bur.


  1. Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women is actually Planeta Bur with a few extra scenes thrown in for american audiences. The extra scenes change the story a little bit, but I don't think that really matters as the visual aspect of the movie far outweights the story. It is a stunningly beautiful film.

  2. Thanks for your comment Matthew; yes, I tried to put the video of Planeta Bur up side by side with Voyage, but there's something wrong with the vimeo link. Looking at the Bogdanovich film, it's amazing that it is so beautiful and mysterious, and the music is very good - considering it is space flick that looks on the surface like it's making fun of itself.

  3. BWAH-HA-HA!

    ...oh wait, they actually want us to believe this....