Venus Express Project Scientist Håkan Svedhem tells us about the spacecraft’s harrowing descent into the Venusian atmosphere, what it is currently up to, and what he’d like to see next at that forbidding planet. Emily Lakdawalla is following Rosetta’s rendezvous with a comet. Bill Nye joins us from Japan to celebrate the announcement of instruments for the 2020 Mars Rover, and Bruce Betts braves the humid atmosphere of SoCal for What’s Up.
ESA / C. Carreau
Venus Express aerobraking
After finishing its scientific mission at Venus, Venus Express was commanded to test aerobraking, requiring the spacecraft to descend to an altitude of 130 kilometers, within the upper atmosphere, from June 18 to July 11, 2014.