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By Kar Y. Lee

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Similarly, if one goes through the same calculation for Mars, its surface temperature should be at -54oC/-66oF. So, to summarize, if we assume all three planets were bare (stripped off of their atmospheres) and absorb all the sunlight that falls on them (were painted black, reflect no light back into space), then their surface temperatures should be as follows: Venus: 51oC, Earth: 3oC, Mars: -54oC. But in reality, with their atmospheres, even though they are not painted black, the planets surface temperatures are measured to be: Venus: 460oC, Earth: 14oC, Mars: -63oC.

6 meters a day. Finally, according to a CBS News report on Feb 7 of 2011, the Russian team had to stop, just 29 meters short of reaching the liquid water below. To some, that was a relief instead of a pity because if the Russian scientists were able to break through the ice and leave it open unattended, the hole would freeze up again and outside materials would have been introduced, unattended, into the pristine water underneath when they would return the following year. Return they did. In the warmest month of the year in the following year, in the January of 2012, the Russian scientists finally broke through into the lake, finishing off what they left off the previous year, presenting Putin with a sample of the lake water.

If we do that we will never be able to get to the bottom of this because we will be completely exhausted by the time we are done. No, we refuse to be bogged down by the details. We are only going to look at some conceptually simple and relevant calculations. We are going to consider the worst scenario for planets without an atmosphere. We will consider the simple case when we paint all three planets black. That means we will assume that they absorb all the sunlight that falls on them so that they will be hotter than they would actually be if they were simply stripped off of their atmospheres.

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