- Venus has 0.9 G’s, 90% of Earth’s gravity; Mars has slightly less than 0.4 G’s.
- Venus has a thick atmosphere which could protect us from cosmic rays and meteorites.
- Venus has moderate to high temperatures.
- At 50km up the atmosphere averages 70 degrees Celsius and is equal to roughly one Earth atmosphere in terms of air pressure.
- As it’s closer to the sun; power would be cheap and 4 times more plentiful than Mars.
- As it’s closer to Earth; transit times would be reduced by 30-50% over Martian trip times.
- And despite that we cannot land on the surface (crazy pressure, 450 degree temperatures), we could build CLOUD CITIES!
NASA has done research into the potential of Venus to sustain human colonies, as well, in project HAVOC:
The atmosphere of Venus is an exciting destination for both further scientific study and future human exploration. A lighter-than-air vehicle can carry either a host of instruments and probes, or a habitat and ascent vehicle for a crew of two astronauts to explore Venus for up to a month. The mission requires less time to complete than a crewed Mars mission, and the environment at 50 km is relatively benign, with similar pressure, density, gravity, and radiation protection to the surface of Earth. A recent internal NASA study of a High Altitude Venus Operational Concept (HAVOC) led to the development of an evolutionary program for the exploration of Venus, with focus on the mission architecture and vehicle concept for a 30 day crewed mission into Venus’s atmosphere. Key technical challenges for the mission include performing the aerocapture maneuvers at Venus and Earth, inserting and inflating the airship at Venus, and protecting the solar panels and structure from the sulfuric acid in the atmosphere. With advances in technology and further refinement of the concept, missions to the Venusian atmosphere can expand humanity’s future in space.