Venus Surface and Atmosphere

Venus Surface and Atmosphere: Jan 29–Feb 1, 2023. Houston, TX/Virtual (Venus Science Initiative)

The conference Venus Surface and Atmosphere, part two of the Lunar and Planetary Institute’s (LPI’s) Venus Science Initiative, was held in Houston and virtually January 30–February 1, 2023. There were 147 registered participants. The overall goal of the Venus Science Initiative is to consolidate our understanding of Venus, explore new hypotheses, and encourage innovative ways to exploit measurements from the upcoming armada of spacecraft that will target Venus in the next decade.

The overarching objective of this conference was to understand the current climate of Venus and its relationship to processes in both the atmosphere and at the surface of Venus. Individual sessions focused on tectonism, volcanism, surface composition, and weathering, as well as atmospheric composition, dynamics, clouds, and microphysics. The final day included sessions on how missions currently in development for the “Decade of Venus” will contribute to solving current questions about Venus evolution, as well as discussion of future mission concepts and technology development that may play a role in Venus exploration beyond the next decade. Throughout the meeting, extensive time for audience questions and discussion was included in the program.

In addition to the science sessions, there was also an evening public engagement event, “Planet Secrets Revealed: Is Venus the Once and Future Earth?” Panelists Justin Filiberto, Tracy Gregg, Matthew Weller, and Jennifer Whitten, along with moderator Vicki Hansen, gave a lively presentation that was enjoyed both by the audience at LPI and on YouTube.

The conference organizing committee consisted of Kandis-Lea Jessup, Mark Bullock, Larry Esposito, Natasha Johnson, Patrick McGovern, Takehiko Satoh, Jennifer Whitten, Thomas Widemann, and Eliot Young. The conference program and abstracts can be found at

— Summary provided by Walter Kiefer, Lunar and Planetary Institute