The former Soviet Union (now Russia) soft-landed several spacecraft, many of which carried cameras, on the surface of Venus. Shown here are two views of the venusian surface taken by the Venera 13 lander in March 1982. The centers of the scenes show the ground immediately adjacent to the spacecraft, while the margins of the images have an oblique view of the horizon. The breakup of the surface materials indicates that erosional processes have been active on Venus. The top view illustrates how the dense atmosphere scatters away all the blue light so that only the red wavelengths reach the surface. The extremely hot temperatures and high pressure of the atmosphere at the surface limits spacecraft operations to only about an hour.
Images returned by the Venera 13 lander on Venus.