Venus will shine bright like a diamond in night sky this weekend, NASA says

Venus is a hellish world with surface temperatures hot enough to melt lead, officials say

From bottom to top: Earth's Moon, Venus, Jupiter and the crescent of Earth at the top. Three planets and our moon put on a show for astronaut Scott Kelly, who spent a year aboard the International Space Station to conduct research of long-duration space flight. Photo captured Aug. 6, 2015. Kelly's Tweet from space: ""Day 114. #Moon #Venus #Jupiter...#Earth Good night from @space_station! #YearInSpace" (Picasa, NASA/Scott Kelly)

SAN ANTONIO – That bright-looking “star” you might have seen recently in the night sky might actually be a planet.

Venus, the hottest planet in the solar system, has been shining bright just after dusk, and on Sunday, June 4, it will reach its highest point in the sky, lending to a spectacular evening of viewing (if clouds cooperate.)

NASA officials said in a press release that Venus is a hellish world with surface temperatures hot enough to melt lead, but billions of years ago, it may have looked similar to Earth with liquid water oceans and perhaps a steamy atmosphere.

Researchers said the planet’s process of turning into a toxic world remains a mystery, but an upcoming NASA mission called DAVINCI might help find answers.

“DAVINCI will plunge through Venus’s thick, toxic atmosphere, collecting unprecedented detail and information about the planet as it parachutes through the thick clouds and lands in an ancient region,” the press release states.

A photo taken on Feb. 22, 2023 from KSAT Connect User, Mel, shows Venus and Jupiter close to the moon in the skies above San Antonio. (KSAT)

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About the Author:

Mary Claire Patton has been a journalist with KSAT 12 since 2015. She has reported on several high-profile stories during her career at KSAT and specializes in trending news and things to do around Texas and San Antonio.