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The South American Tour, by Annie S. Peck, Part 1

Boring Books for Bedtime

53:02 min | 9 months ago

The South American Tour, by Annie S. Peck, Part 1

"Good evening and thank you for joining me for another boring books for bedtime. I hope tonight. Selection provides all the boredom. Your busy brain needs took quiet down and let you get some sleep. So find a comfortable spot. Adjust your volume. Take a nice deep breath in. Let it out slowly. And Off Waco. Before we start tonight, I might to give a special shouted of thanks to three new members of our Patriot family. Rob Been. Ian and Ariel who signed up at our blissful level, and will actually be getting their own private recording. I'm not saying I might be a little more loose with copyright restrictions when it's not going to the public, but I'm not not saying it either. Thank you so much for becoming supporters of this podcast. You help make it possible and keep an ad free zone of relaxation for everyone, and it's much appreciated. If you're interested in checking out the perks available to subscribers on unpatriotic. or You'd to support us through by me. A COFFEE DOT COM with no subscription required. You'll find links to both of those in the show description. Now. Let's get to the reading. Tonight or relaxing with a book by a remarkable woman and adventurer, explorer, mountaineer and suffragette. The book is the South American tour by any. S, Peck, A. Author of a search for the apex of America. Illustrated chiefly from photographs by the author. Published by the George H Doran Company. Nineteen thirteen. Let's begin. To. Introduction! I congratulate Miss. Any S pack the publisher of this book. And those who consult or read it. Upon the preparation of a work of this character. Interest in Latin America is now so rapidly growing throughout all the world. And especially in the United States that are descriptive guidebook of this kind regarding the region's commonly visited by tourists. Become an actual need. Such a work by Mrs Pack is a practical and timely contribution to the literature of the day. There are few persons better qualified to write a book of this character. The remarkable explorations which ms pack has undertaken in the most difficult sections of Latin America and the traveling. She has done in all parts of it not only have provided her with a fast fund of useful information about the countries of South America, but give Special Authority to what she writes. Her book contains in Compact form an amount of definite information, concerning the country's considered, which should place it in the forefront of works of this character. While of course it is impossible for the Panamerican, Union as an official organization and myself as its official head to endorse in any way, a particular book, or accept responsibility for the statements and views it contains. It gives me real pleasure from a personal standpoint to express the hope that this work of Ms Pack will have a wide circulation. And prove decided help in promoting travel to and through the Latin American countries. The Panamerican Union. Which is readers of this book? Probably know is the office of all the American republics. The United States and it's twenty sister Latin American countries. Organized and maintained by them for the purpose of developing commerce, frienship, better acquaintance and peace among them all. Is doing everything possible and legitimate to persuade the traveling public of the United States and Europe to visit the Latin American countries and become familiar with their progress and development. There is no influence in the world that helps more to advance friendship, comedy and commerce among countries then travel back in the fourth of their representative men and women. Nearly every person who visits Latin America under the advice of the Panamerican Union, upon his or her return, writes a letter, expressing appreciation that this opportunity has been afforded of seeing these wonderful countries up the south. In conclusion I would observe that if those who may become interested in Latin America through reading MISSE PECs book, desire further information about any or all of these republics. The Panamerican Union will always be glad to provide them with such data as it may have for distribution. John Barrett. Director General of the Panamerican Union. Washington D. C. USA. October twenty! First, nineteen, thirteen. For everyone. To all Americans both of the northland and of the south, this book with due modesty is described in the hope that by inciting to travel and acquaintance it may promote commercial intercourse with the resulting ties of mutual benefit and respect. In the hope to that the slender cord now feebly, entwining the various republics may soon draw them all into more intimate relations of friendship. At last into a harmonious sisterhood, in which neither age nor size shall confer superior rights. But, mutual confidence based upon the foundations of Justice shall ensure perpetual peace. The opportunity is here improved to express my grateful acknowledgement of kindly assistance and detentions of diverse character received throughout my travels from many of my own countrymen. From Englishman in. Interested and ready to aid. And, from the ever courteous and helpful Latin Americans. As a complete list of these would be too long. I permit myself the mention of those. Who are entitled to a special recognition. Are Minister to Bolivia nineteen ten to nineteen thirteen. The honorable Horace Jean Knowles. And the governments of Bolivia Chile and Argentina. Without whose prompt and substantial aid this work would have been impossible. That its usefulness may be such as to convey to them affected. Return is my earnest aspiration. The indulgence of critics and tourists is sought for errors few I trust. And deficiencies which may be discover. The send other faults will have crept in on account of a preparation somewhat hurried that the book might earlier be of service. And from the impossibility of securing on some points, exact and adequate information, in spite of diligent investigation and careful scrutiny of facts and figures. Many items of interest and importance have been omitted. Less the book should be too long. The selection of material, it is hoped while be suitable to the general reader, though doubtless everyone will find topics presented to which he is indifferent and others neglected, which appeared to him of greater consequence. Any just criticism or suggestion presented to the author will be gratefully received and considered. With a view to incorporating it in a subsequent edition. The South American tour. Forward. The? South American tour. Komo no. Why not as many spanish-american say when they wished to give hearty ascent. have. You been around the world. Do you travel for pleasure or business? Whatever your object! Whether your purse is full or you wish to fill it. The southern half of our hemisphere is land which should not be ignored. What is there to see? May The journey taken income for? These things shall be revealed in detail after a few general facts have been presented. Is the enjoyment of scenery, the chief aim of your travel. With ease, you may be hold some of the finest in the world. Much more if you care to take a little trouble. Snow Clad Mountains Galore rising twenty thousand feet tour thing. The Alps into in -NIFICANT S-! Giants to be admired, not only from afar as tourists in India gaze upon the Himalayas, but from nearer points even from their ferry foot. Smoking volcanoes cliffs more lofty than those of the Yosemite. Wonderful Lake scenery, including the highest sheet of water, twelve, thousand five hundred feet where steamboats ply. Strange! He had fascinating desert's. Wondrous waterfalls one of these surpassing Niagara in height, volume and beauty. Magnificent, tropical vegetation and forests. The highest railroads. The most picturesque and beautiful harbour of the world. All of these with the exception of the great cataract are easily accessible and form a combination of scenic attractions unsurpassed in any portion of the globe. Destroy People and cities interest you more. You may wander in towns, old and quaint. Containing buildings of centuries past, and in cities quite up to date growing with the repetitive of our own. In a few places Indians peculiar garb may be seen by the side of Paris gowns and English masculine attire. In. An Indian with sandals. Hood and Pancho was tracked as much attention as on Broadway. Several cities have boulevards, parks and opera houses finer than any of which North America can boast. Do you care for ruins antiquities? These also abound. All, cities of the dead are there. and others were the new civilization rises above or by the side of the old. Temples palaces fortifications. ANCIENT STATUES Mummies and pottery. Maybe cursorily admired or profoundly studied, and search may still be made for undiscovered monuments of a prehistoric past. These countries rapidly advancing with astonishing mineral and agricultural resources awaiting development. With railroads to beat laid with fast growing markets for almost every kind of merchandise. Invite the traitor and the capitalist. To investigate hitherto neglected opportunities before it is too late. Well informed as to what there is to see. The possible tourist is certain to inquire if the journey will be comfortable. Perhaps, indeed, they order of the question should be reversed. For few I greatly fear would be tempted to say. Let us go if the tour involved any hardship. Happily. This is not the case. Though the period her, the Mauritania and the Olympic do not yet in that direction. The names of several steamship lines, which served the traveler to Panama or point, OHS aries. Are a guarantee of comfort and of sufficient luxury. The steamers elsewhere are commodious having for the most part state rooms provided with electric fans and satisfying on reasonable requirements. The railroads in the various countries have the usual equipment. The hotels if one does not depart from the ordinary line of travel. Will in general, be found satisfactory. providing. Food good beds, etc.. And in the cities were some little time should be spent meeting. The wants of all. Except the ultrafast idiocy tourist. If we do not sympathize with the cry, see America first. Bearing in mind that America is the whole and not a fraction of the Western continent. At least when we have seen the old world. Instead of ever retracing are steps in familiar ways. Let us seek the strange new world beyond the equator where brief tour will reveal a multitude of scenes, amazing and delightful, even to the experienced traveler. The South American tour. Chapter One. What the tour is! How wind went to go what it costs. The South American tour rapidly becoming fashionable into popular and about to be described. Includes the most interesting and accessible portions of that continent. It's finest scenery its greatest cities. A wonderful variety in the swiftly moving pictures prevents any dullness on the part of the intelligent traveler who has ever captain Lert for the continually fresh experiences of this remarkable journey. My. Tourist Party will be conducted I to Panama. Where soon the sale ocean to ocean through an immense artificial channel while awakened sensations of wonder and pride. The opportunity, then to continue in the same vessel along the west coast of South America in valuable for commerce, and for those on business bent may prove a disadvantage to the pleasure traveler by tempting him to pass with a mere glance, the city of Panama and other spots worthy of observation. On the Pacific side. Peru Bolivia and Chile will be visited by everyone. A few may make the side trip to Ecuador Choir Keel and Kito. In order to return along the East Coast One may complete the circuit up the continent by sailing down through the Straits of Magellan past point, quinto arenas and up on this side. Or with a greater number may cross the Andes by rail, thus to reach the metropolis of South America Buenos Aires. Thence after or if not including an excursion to Paraguay. And to the greatest of American waterfalls, the equal sue. One may sale two months video in Uruguay. From there to brazelle returning from Rio de Janeiro directly to New York, or by way of Europe as preferred. Similarly the trip may be made from Europe by several lines of steamers direct Panama. Or more quickly by way of New York with the return from Rio. Altogether omitted from this itinerary or the countries on the northern shore of South America. Up these Colombia and Venezuela are better included in a west India trip. The key unas by ordinary tourists are neglected. Obviously the journey may be made in either direction as above or in reverse order. But unless the season of the year invites change, the former sequence should by all means be followed. Thus taken the journeys one of ever increasing interest. Until its culmination in the delightful harbor and city of Rio de Janeiro. Not that Peru is inferior to Bolivia and Chile or Buenos Aires to Rio. Let me hasten to add. Each has its own peculiar charm, but one who begins with the West Coast or find the entire journey far more enjoyable and impressive. When one should go depends more upon when one wishes to leave home than upon the conditions prevailing in. South America. Also upon one's individual taste as to temperature. In brief one may safely make the trip whenever it suits convenience. Bearing in mind what so many seemed to forget? At the seasons are reversed in the northern and southern hemispheres. May leave home to escape either heat or cold. Or to avoid March wins as he may elect. In. None of the countries to be visited is the variation between winter and summer so great as in the latitude of New York. North tropical heat anywhere on the journey so intense as that of many days of every summer here. Leaving the United States on a four months tour at any time between the middle of November and the last of August I strongly advise one to visit the West, coast i. During the remaining three months. One Who dislikes hot weather might better begin with Brazil. In December January and February, the Mercury at Rio is mostly in the eighties. In January I found it comfortable enough for summer weather. But I needed the ten degrees lower temperature of an earlier or later season to make my visit absolutely ideal. With the delightful climate during nine months of the year, the city had any time is perfectly healthy. Since the yellow fever formerly had dreaded, skorge was stamped out at Rio during the same period that this was accomplished in Panama. Why knows aries also may be more advantageously visited during the cooler weather, both because the opera and social festivities are then in full swing, and because one is likely to be more energetic for sightseeing of which there is much to be done. In Peru and Bolivia on the usual route of travel. It is never hot enough to be troublesome. She lay in the central and most visited portion is a trifle less agreeable during the southern summer than in spring or fall, especially on account of the dust. But. This matters little for a brief stay. Four months should be allowed for the trip. A couple who made it in three, oh delighted with their journey, mourned over the unavoidable emissions and were planning to go again. Six months is not too much. A whole year could profitably employed. But in four months or a trifle more? One may visit the most important places and gain a fair idea of the various countries. The personally conducted parties for three months only are well worthwhile. The expense of the trip will naturally vary according to the time and extent of the journey. And the economy or extravagance of the tourist? A round trip ticket from New York to New, York. Good either by the Straits or across the Andes may be purchased for four hundred seventy five dollars. Or including a return by way of Europe for five hundred five dollars. Additional expenses may be from five hundred or less to one thousand or more, according to the person, the time and the number of side trips taken. By several tourist agencies, personally conducted parties are semi annually dispatched to South America. At a cost varying from one, thousand, three, hundred seventy five dollars for a tour of ninety eight or ninety nine days to two thousand, two hundred fifty dollars for one hundred forty six days. Also the Hamburg American line has sent a ship around Valparaiso by way of the Straits. Tickets, four hundred seventy five dollars to three thousand dollars. Optional extra short trips, three hundred dollars or more. On the completion of the canal they will probably have ship making the entire circuit. Persons who prefer to be relieved of care or who do not speak, Spanish. The language current at all points of the journey save Brazil. And they're understood by educated people. We'll do well to join a party even if their time is limited. Those, who can devote a longer period to the trip? And who liked to do their own planning? May seem more by themselves either greater or less expens-? One Who speaks only English. By keeping to the mainland travel and a patronizing, the leading hotels should have no serious difficulty. Though it is of course an advantage, but only gained by one who is familiar with Latin or French to have some acquaintance with Spanish an easy and beautiful language. Up Bear smattering picked up from a phrasebook on. The foliage is better than nothing while a conversation, knowledge greatly enhances the pleasure and Prophet of the journey. In regard to baggage, the less taken the better. Both on account of the expense, and because of the care entails. Yet it is well to have a fair supply of close since evening. Dress is everywhere more strictly on rag. Then in most parts of the United States to the steamships are not all rigid as to the precise amount of baggage, though the allowance on different lines varies from one, hundred, fifty, two four hundred pounds. The railroads are strict and the baggage is expensive. Only one hundred pounds are allowed. Going up to Bolivia by the southern railway of Peru. A heavy box or to make cost as much as the ticket. Many tourists take only hand baggage to COSCO and Lapaz, leaving on board the steamer. They're heavy pieces to be reclaimed later at Valparaiso. On all roads, the hand baggage go spray. Hence Suitcases, etc are much in evidence. One niece supply of both light and heavyweight clothing, the proportion of age depending upon the season of the year. Always by way of the isthmus, there are eight or ten days of summer weather on route and several weeks during the. East Coast Journey. Along the seaboard, Peru and Chile. Woolen or heavy underwear may be desirable for many as on the Highlands of Peru and. Also in Chile and Argentina during the winter season, when a temperature in the forties and fifties will be experienced. Some hotels have no fires, and the nights and mornings are chill. On the mountain railways as during a portion of the sea, voyage wraps, and rugs are needed in addition to moderately heavy clothing. Furs though unnecessary may be found agreeable during the months of winter June to September. Money may be carried in letters of credit on W. R. Grace. Or other bankers. or by American Express or traveler's checks. Together with a moderate supply of gold, preferably in English sovereigns the English pound, being precisely the same as the Peruvian is interchangeable with them. In other countries, it is more acceptable and convenient than American gold. Though in the large cities are, there will be readily exchanged. A point to be noted and remembered. Is that most resident Americans and English a few natives and travelers in South America, generally speaking of certain coins, so soule's or pesos has dollars a poor custom which should not be imitated. Prevalent one, must be on guard to avoid mistakes. In. Panama, a clerk or Coachman sang to be cents or one. Dollar means silver. I eat ten fifty cents United States currency. A man in Lima who speaks of twenty dollars, probably mean soule's practically ten dollars. In Bolivia Oblivion is about forty cents. A peso in Chile is twenty two cents more or less. In Argentina forty four. In Uruguay one dollars four cents. In Brazil a mill race is thirty three cents. All of the country's divide their unit decimal A. And if it were not for the foolish custom of english-speaking folk, there would be no confusion. In this book, the words dollars and cents and the sign the dollar. While everywhere signify United States currency. Otherwise the names employed by the respective countries will be used as soule's pesos and Centavo sales. In connection with Brazilian money, the sign of the dollar is put after the number. Thus fifteen meal raise is written fifteen dollars nine, zero, zero zero. Chapter to? The voyage to Panama. In nineteen eighty three before the United States occupation, there was no choice as to means of transport to the Isthmus A. Steamship Company that of the Panama, Canal Road. Dispatch vessel from New York once a week. Now there are four different lines with as many weekly sailings besides one from New Orleans. A more convenient point of departure for many south of Mason and Dixon's line. The four companies all with headquarters in New York won't gladly furnish the latest information in regard to their own sailing and accommodations as on other points in reference to the tour. The lowest fare from New York to Cologne seventy five dollars. Took Panama Seventy eight dollars. Is the same on all lines. Better accommodations being provided for supplementary fee a from fifteen dollars up. It is wisdom to purchase if not a ticket for the round trip. One is far at least as Malindo one hundred ninety one dollars. As, a slight reduction is made on through tickets. Stopovers are allowed at any of the ports of call. And on the East or West. Coasts of South America. The journey may if more convenient be resumed on certain other lines of steamers without extra charge. Save for embarking or disembarking in the small boats. The respective merits of the four steamship lines to Panama are a matter of opinion. On three days. I have enjoyed the voyage. Especially, my last in luxurious suite on the Prince August. Villa helm the Atlas Hamburg. American line. The Old Panama Company claims that its boats are provided with all of the comforts afforded by the others including. With private baths. It has slightly irregular sailings seven among. With several steamers, making the journey in six days, instead of the seven, eight or nine occupied by ships of the other lines. Those who prefer American cooking or the shorter voyage will choose one of the ships. The Royal Mail and the Hamburg American lines are quite similar to each other in service and accommodations. The boats of the former CEO for Cologne on Alternate Saturdays calling on the way at an Tia Cuba Addict Kingston Jamaica. Those of the latter sale every Saturday. Touching at Santiago de Cuba and Kingston. The Royal. Mail steamers are scheduled to arrive at Cologne on Sunday eight days from New York. Connecting with the P. S. N. boats departing on Monday for the south. But through tickets are good by any of the three lines on the other side. And One may delay on the Smith's for a few days or weeks of sightseeing. The hambrouck American steamers arrive at Cologne Monday one week connecting with the PSN steamer, the next with one of the Peruvian and another of the Chilean line sailing the same afternoon. No one, however, who was making a pleasure trip. Should cross the smiths without staying over a few days. The United Fruit company boasts of a great white fleet with four sailings to Colona. Week. To on Wednesday and Saturday from New York. And two on the same day as from New Orleans. These ships they say are the only ones going to Cologne, which were designed and built especially for Tropical Service. Thus having all the latest devices for comfort as well as for safety. Among these are bilge kills and all the watertight compartments. A wireless equipment as a matter of course, the boats of all lines carry. These have also a submarine signal apparatus to give warning of the proximity of another vessel. And as an a special feature lifeboats, which with a patent lever, may be swung off and lowered by a single man. By the system of ventilation, the temperature of the rooms at night may be kept down to fifty five degrees if desired. A Boon to many on the muggy Caribbean. And the electric lights have the rare quality of burning low. All of the boats on the various lines have pianos and music. Most of them cards, checkers, chess and libraries the United Fruit company, supplying the latest magazines. The Saturday steamers of this line from New York call Thursday at Kingston Jamaica. Where they remained until two PM Friday. They are due Cologne at noon on Sunday. The Wednesday, steamers take a day less for the trip. At Kingston, arrive on Monday. They remained from seven am till four PM. The Isthmus is reached at one pm on Wednesday. The opportunity to go by way of new, Orleans may appeal especially in winter to some who have not visited that city, and those who desire to avoid the possibility of two or three cold stormy days on the see before entering the regions of perpetual summer. The steamer sale in five days to Cologne the Saturday boats arriving Thursday am and the Wednesday boats Monday morning. The foliage to Panama indeed all of the six or seven weeks on the C. which are a necessary part of this tour will be likely to prove an agreeable experience, even to those who, as a rule do not enjoy the ocean. While the waters of the Atlantic may at any season be turbulent and tempestuous. The portions of both oceans which are to be reversed. Are for the most part so smooth that unless persons are determined to be seasick whether they have occasion or not, it is probable that they will suffer little or none from this unpleasant malady. Ordinarily this sale to Panama under sunny skies, over unruffled, sees in weather after a day or two warm enough for summer, clothing is a pleasure unalloyed. On the Caribbean might be trifle muggy and sticky. But if favoured with sunshine, the wonderful blue of the waters deeper than that of the Bay of Naples, afford solace. On some of the ships, little dance on deck, if happily under a tropical moon. May Be Inexperience affording delightful memories. After leaving New York, harbor and the enjoying coast. The first land to come within range of vision is that of what links island noted for a lighthouse of great power value. Otherwise unimportant it acquires interest from the fact that on this shore. Columbus is believed to have made his first landing in the Western world. The. Is thus entitled to the more pretentious name San, Salvador. Bestowed by the great explorer upon the land where I teach rod in devout Thanksgiving after many weeks of painful suspense upon the limitless ocean. Fortunate is the traveler who toward sunset enters windward channel, passing before dark, desolate wooded bluffs of the eastern extremity of Cuba Cape Maisy and later having a look at the southeast shores, where rise somber forest covered peaks to an imposing height, the loftiest above eight thousand feet. From Panama or United Fruit company steamer no more. Will you see of Cuba? But on a boat of the Royal Mail you will already have called the den Tia in the eastern section of the island's northern shore, a new and growing seaport, a neat Pay Bay and the North Terminus of the Cuban railway. Extensive docking facilities have been provided large warehouses immense tanks for molasses. A good hotel. And plans are made for building here a great commercial city. By the Hamburg American line. The first call made on the south side of the island. At the more famous inconsiderable city Santiago de Cuba. which founded in fifteen, fourteen is said to be the oldest settlement of size in the western. Hemisphere It has also historic interest. That Hernandez Cortez from this port. November Eighteenth fifteen eighteen set out for the bold conquest of the as tech empire is a fact less widely known than the more recent circumstance. That in this sheltered harbour, the fleet of Admiral Cervera Lay concealed. Until July third eighteen, ninety eight, it sailed forth to its doom. In the narrow porthole, less than six hundred feet, wide rest, the old merrimack. Sunk by Lieutenant Sin and seven others June third eighteen ninety A. On the right of the entrance, Crowning Bluff, two hundred feet high is the old, moreover castle, an ancient fortress of picturesque appearance begun soon after the founding of the city and possessing towers and turrets in genuine medieval style. Six miles farther at the head of the bay on a sloping terrace with steep hills behind is the bright gaze city. Though at the noon tied our. It may seem a trifle sleepy and dog. If time permits a drive on the fine roads will be enjoyed. To the San Juan battlefield, three miles distant. And to L. convey a little further. The fare is one dollar fifty cents for a single person two dollars for several. The longer Dr Tomorrow Castle Fair Three Dollars Fifty cents affords charming views. In the city one proceeds I to the plaza. Where on one side is the Great Cathedral called the largest in Cuba. Containing rare marbles and Mahogany choir stalls. On the other sides are the CASA, Grande Hotel and the Phoenix restaurant. Nearby is the filler Mugniyah Theater where the famous diva other leany potty is said to have made her debut. A few may care to visit the spot where the captain and sailors of the Virginia s were executed as filibusters in eighteen, seventy, three, a slaughter pen name the Harbor Front to the East to Cuba railway station. An inscribed tablet, there commemorates the sad defend. Kingston Jamaica is presented by all of the steamers. Those of the Panama Line. The Wednesday boat of the United Fruit Company having previously touched at Port Antonio on the northeast side of the same island. The port, a busy place, allowing its present prosperity chiefly to our fondness for bananas. Captain Baker of Boston in eighteen sixty eight. Began the trade which the United. Fruit company has developed to immense proportions. The Splendid Hotel to field, which the company has erected affords every facility for a delightful summer outing during our winter season. The older and larger city of Kingston is on the south side of the island. By the excellent and far famed harbor of Port Royal. The town of that name, ancient Rome Devo of Morgan and the Puck, and nears once stood on the. Sandy spit which separates the bay from the ocean. But on a day in sixteen, Ninety two occur to one of those memorable tragedies at which the whole world stands appalled. The Earth was shaken. The city sank beneath the sea. where it is said that some of the buildings may yet be seen when the waves are still. Deep down below the smiling tranquil surface. Kingston then founded on the main shore. Recently suffered on January fourteenth nineteen o seven, as we well remember a similar, thou less complete disaster, being merely shaken down instead of swallowed up. Mike San Francisco. It was promptly rebuilt with better architecture. Quite up to date with electric cars send other modern conveniences. It is an attractive place of scenic and tropical beauty. Excellent to for shopping. Interesting or the markets, the old parish church badly shaken, but still standing. The main streets king and Queen at right angles to each other. The, Jamaica Institute with museum and a library where among other historical Curios may be seen the famous shark papers in Seventeen, ninety, nine, thrown overboard swallowed by a shark, but soon after rescued from his maw. To The discomfiture of the Yankee captain of the Nancy an American privateer. In the suburbs of the city within easy reach is Kings House the fine residence of the governor? General? Worth visiting the electric cars is hope gardens and estate two hundred twenty acres. With a fine collection of indigenous plants and many exotics. The splendid roads over the island. The possibilities for delightful excursions. The most enchantingly ascent of a mountain, seven, thousand, four, hundred twenty three feet. Would, attempt to a longer stay. But we hasten onward to more distant and greater glories. Tourists Living West of the rocky mountains may prefer to sail from San Francisco or Los. To Balboa the port of Panama. At a considerable saving F expense though not have time. Express steamers twice a month. Make the voyage from San, Francisco, in fourteen days with the single call at San. Pedro Los Angeles. Fair eighty five dollars. While three times a month. There are other boats which do not stop at San Pedro but make eleven calls in Mexico and Central America, thus affording opportunity to see some of those ports consuming twenty six days on the trip. Home on these steamers. That Fair is one hundred twenty dollars. All these boats are up the Pacific mail steamship company. By Way of New York the journey from San Francisco to Panama. May with close connection be made in ten or twelve days. European Torres may sale from Southampton by Royal Mail steamer in eighteen days to Cologne. Fair one hundred twenty five dollars. or from share bark seventeen days fair one hundred dollars. Other companies which have steamer sailing from Europe to Cologne are the Hamburg American. Four Times monthly from harbor and Hamburg. THEM LEYLAND SEE Harrison. Three times a month from Liverpool. The CIA Generale Transatlantic. Once a month from Saint Nazaire, and once from Bordeaux. The. Transatlantic. And the CIA lava luce. Each month lie from Barcelona and Genoa. And with that I think we'll end this evening's reading from the south. American tour by any s pack. When next re return to this bug and we will definitely be returning to this book. We're going to get a picture of the Panama Canal contemporary with its actual construction, so that will be interesting. If, you'd like to read ahead and take a look at this work for yourself. As always you'll find out link to a free e Book Version From Project Gutenberg in the show description. The description also includes both ways you can help support this podcast and keep it ad free by becoming a subscriber on Patriae on or offering a one time tip via by coffee DOT COM. I. Hope you'll take the time to check them out. If you'd like to connect or suggest a book, you'd like to hear read. The best place to catch me on our website. WWW dot boring books pot, dot, com, or catch me on twitter at boring books pod. I'm so glad you could join me for this evening's rating. Until our next boring book. Goodnight.

Panama New York United States Bolivia Europe Cologne South America South America Kingston Jamaica Peru Chile Latin America Rio de Janeiro Hamburg American line Panamerican Union America United Fruit company Andes New Orleans
Airships Over Venus

Stuff To Blow Your Mind

56:11 min | 4 months ago

Airships Over Venus

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My name is robert. And i'm joe mccormack. And hey robin has been a while since we checked in on the air fryer planet. So what do you say. We talk about venus today. Yeah i think it is. High time that we return to venus For for a few different reasons first of all even though we have covered venus in the past. There's just so much weird and wonderful stuff to discuss about the planet that we had to return. Also in the past year we've had some developments concerning venus and also there's a particular Plan a project in the in the works that i'd like to discuss in more detail really just like venus is just such a wild and wonderful planet and our attempts to understand how we might might be able to further explore it and also our history of exploring it is just fascinating so we just had to return. Will you know what we always say here. With reference to venus. I am the doorway. We are both the doorway so let's ourselves and walked through in into some thoughts about the the second planet. Yeah nicest stephen king reference All right so. I guess one of the things with with venus that i've been thinking about recently is like the idea of of terra firma of the solid ground beneath our feet. And when i think about this often find it a bit weird because on one hand the idea of firm earth beneath us is truly reassuring and that the earth is round only makes it more so at least in my mind because in some respects it means that its earth all the way down underneath us you know like the earth might not be the center of the universe or even the solar system but the center of the earth is still a center. You know what i mean. Yeah it can't The earth can't let collapse and fall through into space beneath itself because being a sphere. There is no space beneath that. You just you go down until you hit the center. Yeah now the sky of course if you're in the sky that's not terra firma and the same goes for the surface of the ocean. Despite the fact that the ocean reminds us that terra firma isn't all it's cracked up to be much of of earth is crushed beneath an ocean hidden in darkness and other proportions are covered in ice or propelled so far up into the atmosphere by mountain peaks that it pushes beyond what is a reasonable environment for humans. Sure and then when we think of other worlds it gets even weirder right. The gas giants both no terra firma. At all and then there's venus on venus terra firma or venus firm more accurately would-be. A high pressure high temperature hellscape but higher up in its atmosphere or you know in or above the clouds of venus. This is the region. Ironically that we might find metaphorical terra firma on the planet. That is terrace. strange sibling interesting. Thought okay. so we're gonna be talking about the atmosphere of venus today Now this is this is a subject. That's not entirely new to us. We visited this in Some explorations before we did one episode a couple of years ago about the possibility of life on venus where we discussed the pros and cons and and various scientific speculation about what form that could take if it were to exist and one of the things that kept coming up there was about the the difference between the surface of venus in the atmosphere of venus And so well. Maybe we should just do a brief refresher on on venus itself. Tell me about the planet. The like i'm going on a blind date with venus. What what if. What have you got to sell me on this all right. So venus is the second planet from the sun and just slightly smaller than earth size and surface areas quite similar to our own world. In in many ways it can be seen as an alternative earth. The two planets may have had very similar origins but they parted ways long ago. Venus may have once had oceans and may have once or even still. We'll get into this supported lifeforms. But today it's this doley lit high-pressure world with volcanic mountains and ash planes. A runaway greenhouse effect boiled away the oceans long ago and they were lost space. There are no plate. Tectonics that we know of on venus and it's volcanoes to spring up wherever instead of emerging along plate borders as they do on earth the high pressure high temperature atmosphere is more than ninety six percent carbon dioxide and three point five percent molecular nitrogen with trace amounts of other gases. If you're standing on the surface of venus it would be roughly ninety times the pressure of sea level on earth. Of course it's going to vary depending on altitude. But that's sort of ballpark. The clouds are often described as being concentrated sulfuric acid or more specifically sulfur dioxide with drops of sulfuric acid within it. Yes that is what the midst is. Oh it's carbon dioxide atmosphere but the the droplets that are suspended to make the clouds. Sulfuric acid have fun batman so when we think about venus one of the cool things that we've touched on this before we we think about life on venus either life that could still reside there now native life or the possibility which will get into later in the episode of of its sustaining. Our life in one way or another we ended up not looking to that hell hellish surface to the actual of venus firma. No instead we look to the clouds above or even the space a little above the clouds. Yes and this brings us to one of the main things that we wanted to talk about today Which was that. There was what looks like some really major news on the subject of possible life on venus. Just a couple of months ago though the story turned out to be one of those cases of possible scientific whiplash. We'll get into the complications as we move on but But take a look if you're ready. Let's do it okay So for obvious reasons. The reasons we've just been talking about the surface of venus is just clearly sterile. There is no way you would expect to find any kind of organized life form living at. I was gonna say sea level nazi level the surface level of venus again temperatures over nine hundred degrees fahrenheit somewhere between like four hundred five hundred degrees celsius extreme pressure. Like you just said something like ninety or one hundred times the atmospheric pressure at sea level on earth. It's sort of equivalent to going. Like you know hundreds of meters down under the water. Very very high pressure It is difficult to imagine under these conditions that any sort of organized self replicating structures would be able to survive in there. A few reasons for that one thing is that you know like Information containing molecules tend to be pretty fragile and they would be probably disrupted by heat of that kind also. You can't water there and it's hard for us to imagine what a life form that did not incorporate water would look like because water is a very water is the necessary solvent that makes the existence of cells possible allows it allows the transportation of of different types of nutrients and molecules across membranes. And stuff like that. Like you can't have life as we know it without water and you can't have water on the surface of venus but as we've discussed on the show before it is not impossible to imagine that life could exist higher up in the atmosphere of venus so this would be microorganisms floating in the clouds where at higher altitudes the climate is relatively temperate and this would not even be without precedent in known biology. We're not talking about some kind of organism that is unimaginable from from the perspective of earthlife. Because here on earth there are bacteria such as Pseudomonas syringe e that are thought to be present at higher altitudes floating within clouds. I've even read about interesting speculation that these bacteria floating in the clouds could affect weather patterns by serving as ice nuclei that lead to precipitation. So think about that. Like what if. The weather is being affected by germs. Up in the sky and the idea of microbes floating in the clouds of venus would even explain If it were true some observed features of venus that that we don't fully know how to explain otherwise David grinspoon has written about this. And he's a former show guest. We've talked to him a little bit about The signs of life on venus that that predate the paper that was published this year Things like recurring patterns of darkening observed in the clouds. Do you remember any of the other. Specifics he gets into about that. I mean that's one of the big one that's one of the ones we ended up focusing on. Yeah this this idea that it almost makes you think about. Oh some sort of a plankton type Life form thriving in the in the atmosphere there like atmospheric algal blooms or something. yeah But the other thing is that there is evidence that venus was quite possibly once more hospitable than it is now. You mentioned this earlier. The possibility of surface water now there is definitely not surface-water on venus right now would instantly boil but the evidence makes it look highly plausible that venus once had liquid water at its surface even oceans. Maybe as recently as a billion years ago or so. That's not a i believe. That's not a known fact but it seems highly plausible so if there once was a full biosphere on venus that was eventually wiped out at the surface level by the runaway greenhouse effect. It's possible that the last remnant of that archaic biological world is microorganisms. That can live their whole lives floating in the clouds though. It's worth noting that these clouds again consists primarily of suspended droplets of sulfuric acid. So these would need to be special kinds of Extreme file type organisms now while these possibilities are very cool. This has always been totally speculative right. There has never been any actual direct strong evidence for the presence of life on venus. There has just been. We've observed things that could be consistent with the presence of life interesting and surprising ways that is there space for life as we know it within what we know of venus. Yeah and the answer is well. Maybe more space than you might think. Though that we didn't have direct evidence that would say looks like there is life that picture got a little bit more complicated in september of this year Now there's going to be a very big caveat coming with this paper. But i i just want to present the the evidence that we that emerged back in september and so there is a paper published in nature astronomy in september twenty twenty by jane greaves nita. Ms richards william bains. Paul be rimmer. Hideo sagawa david l. Clements and sara seager at all Called phosphine gas in the cloud decks of venus now. This paper deals with Analysis of spectral data collected through a couple of telescopes the lead author jane greaves of cardiff university and colleagues collected data through two major telescopes the james clerk maxwell telescope in hawaii and the atacama large millimeter array in chile. And what the study reported was that they had used spectral analysis of venus to find something really intriguing about the gases present in the atmosphere and what they found was at an altitude of roughly fifty kilometers above the surface. Think it was like fifty five kilometers in a concentration of about twenty parts per billion a gas called phosphine or ph. Three one phosphorus atom with three hydrogen atoms. Now the chemistry nerds out there or the the breaking bad nerds out there will alike. Know that phosphine is just nasty. Highly flammable extremely toxic gas It's often found in conjunction with traces of die phosphine or p two h four which makes it pyro forex so fond of automatically catching fire upon exposure to air at room temperature lovely It is sometimes a product of human industry for example in the manufacturer of semiconductors or also in the manufacture of methamphetamine. Now no one is alleging that there are meth labs on venus but whatever the cause this was a much higher level of phosphine gas than you would expect to find at about twenty parts per billion. This is something like three orders of magnitude more phosphine than you would find in earth's atmosphere. Now why is it interesting to find phosphine at that concentration you know. Different planets have gases in their atmosphere different levels You know Venus has much more carbon dioxide in its atmosphere than earth does so so what. What's the deal with phosphine. Why would that catch. Our attention will ensure the presence of high levels of phosphine gas represent a disequilibrium phosphine. Gas is something that's kind of inherently unstable in digestible by physical processes exposure to ultraviolet light and chemical reactions with other things phosphine. Gas should just naturally sort of get eliminated from atmospheres in this ties. In with something we talked about in one of our recent anthology of horror episodes when we were talking about looking for signatures of a shadow biosphere on earth some of the researchers there for example. I think the planetary scientists to restore can't remember. She's a planetary scientist during an astronomer but the scientists carolyn porco was talking about. How if you were looking for signs of a shadow biosphere you would want to find environments that are added disequilibrium things that are out of whack with like quantities of chemicals. That don't seem like they would just naturally settle at that level. And i was trying to come up with a good analogy to explain why it's weird to find phosphine like this on on venus and so here's what i came up with. I hope this is somewhat appropriate. Imagine you live in florida and you go out for a walk on a hot summer day in july. It's ninety five degrees out one hundred percent humidity. And you're walking your dog along the sidewalk and you noticed that every twenty feet or so down the sidewalk. There's a big old hunk of ice sitting on the pavement. All right well that that would be suspect. I think yeah. Yeah exactly not florida weird. But we're right. Yeah the the ice could be the result of a florida man that that would explain it. It would not make a lot of sense. Even though ice does form naturally in the environment on earth it would not make sense given the conditions outside in this florida neighborhood to assume. Oh this is a chunk of polar ice that happens to be left over from the last glacial maximum period right because like the the environmental conditions would have already like digested and recycled that ice. The ice is unstable enough given the surrounding conditions. That you wouldn't expect it to just be there from a previous freeze over it also. It wouldn't even make sense to say well. It hailed one time last winter. So the isis just sitting here leftover from that no it would mean somebody is going around spill on ice all over the place or or leaving i on purpose on the sidewalk. Yeah there's something there's gotta be some kind of anomalous process. That's putting the ice there and so back to venus. If phosphine gas were truly present at something like twenty parts per billion you would have to assume that something was continuously pudding that phosphine there. And while it's possible the explanation was some geochemical or photochemical process. That we don't understand yet. A very interesting candidate explanation was microbial life because here on earth phosphine is when it's not made by humans it is almost always the byproduct of microbial life especially anaerobic life in fact if you go way back to you know. I don't remember how many years ago this is now. -vivor six years ago. We did some halloween episodes on the will of the whis. Remember that there'd be out of the legend of there's a light in the bog that leads a travel off the path and it's often attributed to a spirit or a devil. It's kind of a visual. Leche it's ferry fire it's The l. fire the the hinky puck or he he keeps punk is punk or pocket. I don't remember remember puncture pock. Yeah the remember the the will of the whist basically be ideas with lewis has so many strange and curious names. It's that it's been given over the years in different cultures. That episode was a lot of fun by the way and will have to go back and revisit that some time but so people have tried to offer plausible physical explanations for sightings of the willow the wisp. Why is it that so many people report seeing. You know a lot of blue or green light in the swamp that's dancing around as if it's a lantern carried by a ghost and a lot of these physical explanations for that phenomena involve phosphine gas often. The explanation is some variation on well. There's the bog or a bunch of mud and there's rotting vegetation and and maybe bones from animals down there that are being consumed and metabolized by anaerobic bacteria which produce phosphine gas is a byproduct and then this phosphine gas in the presence of phosphine or p two. H four is sort of burping. Up out of the earth is sometimes spontaneously ignited on contact with the air or maybe it's just producing a sort of cool Bluer green glow without national catching on fire But it's in the presence of some of some of their pirate for and whatever is going on here this glowing or or luminous luminescent cloud or this flame becomes the will the wisp but whether or not that is the the actual explanation for willow the wisp sightings it is absolutely true that anaerobic bacteria decomposing organic matter down in the bog will produce phosphine gas. Let's just something that's no. They're known to do another interesting coincidence. The authors proposed that the phosphine gas detected in venus atmosphere was at altitudes of around fifty kilometers or like fifty five kilometers. This also happens to be an altitude where environmental conditions are much more tolerable on venus around thirty degrees celsius or something like eighty something degrees fahrenheit and a pressure similar to earth's atmosphere. Yeah this is one of the key Layers on venus. That were often looking at when we're actually sending some sort of a probe there or planning for possible missions to venus in the future right and so if this phosphine gas was a byproduct of the metabolism of some type of microbe of one possibility that was discussed in this was quoted in an mit tech review article. I was reading. this is from Jane greaves the lead author on the study. She said quote that suggests. It's part of the global circulation pattern of the atmosphere where gas sinks before travels as far as the polls so i guess a question would be well. What else putting the phosphine gas. They're like with the florida example Is there something else that could account for chunks of ice being found along the sidewalk and you could come up with explanations because they. Yeah maybe i don't know. Maybe there was some kind of atmosphere phenomenon. I'm gonna weird anomalous hailstorm in these things fell. Even though it's hot outside it just happened. Recently you could come up with things For example we know that some amount of phosphine gas is generated by a biotic non-organic processes deepen the atmosphere of jupiter jupiter gas giant. And the phosphine. There is produced under conditions that do not seem to be possible on venus at least as far as we know so could be produced by lightning or space impacts or volcanoes or some other high energy phenomena like that well again. This was analyzed by the authors of the paper and it looks like no not as far as we know nothing. No a biotic process were aware of seems capable of explaining the amounts of phosphine found so basically if If the findings in this original study from september twenty twenty or correct there is anomalous gas present in the atmosphere of venus and we don't know of any photochemical or geochemical process. That could have put it there in the amount that we find it and on earth the same gas is often the byproduct of microbial life so this is not by any means proof of alien life but it is extremely tantalizing from an astro biological point of view again. Kind of widens. The space possible of for life to exist in venus. What say more than that. I mean it says here's something we observe and we know it could be explained by life and nothing else that we know of would seem to explain it very well. Yeah but to be very clear. This is not proof And i was reading an article in chemical engineering news by arianna remmel who quotes an astro chemist. Who who had some good thoughts here. So i just want to read a quote from this article. Anthony re megyn and astor chemist. The national radio astronomy observatory. Who was not involved in the study. Says the team did a fantastic job presenting their findings but he remained skeptical. Scientists need more spectral data to verify the signal comes from three rummaging says quote but it's a first good step in that direction as for what could produce phosphine on venus. We need a better understanding. The fundamental chemistry forming these types of molecules before calling it a biosignature so You know so. Praise for the study but You know caution. Tempering the optimism. It's not like we know there. Are aliens there now. And when the study was first published in september people got really excited. A lot of listeners asked us directly to cover this on the show especially since we've done episodes on the possibility of life on venus before and it was really cool but a. I figured we should wait for the experts to chew on this a little more before we did an episode about it. And i'm glad we did wait because while this finding remains very interesting is by no means totally overturned. Subsequent research is making the picture. Look more complicated and less clear so there are reports of at least three studies at least one of which involves one of the same authors as the original study and this They tried to confirm the presence of phosphine and of these three. All three failed to confirm it. Now i don't know if all of them are published yet. I think at least one of them is but these are media reports I was reading in for example. The mit tech review and in national geographic that were based off of reports from pre print versions of these studies. So you know maybe not fully confirmed yet but there. There are at least some questions that are arising in the basic issue is. They're looking to confirm the signs of in the atmosphere and they're not necessarily finding it so one tried to look for signs of phosphine in older archival observations venus and didn't find it a couple of others processed the same raw data from the september. Twenty twenty study just using a different mathematical analysis method different method for crunching the numbers. And they didn't find the same strong indications for the presence of phosphine now these differences could be because the initial study mistaken or there could be other reasons for example in the one where they look at the archival data and don't find the same thing well they could be that maybe there are cycles in which the presence of phosphine gas spikes at certain times and certain places in history on venus. So from what i've been reading now it's not as simple as yes. There is phosphine or no there is not it. Looks like at this point. It remains a complicated unsettled question and we need more research. So what would be really great would just be like you know. Go to venus unsettled. This whole thing absolutely in and of course there. There are two ways of considering that one of course is send more missions to venus and of course there are a number of those either planned or and sort of a plea pre planning pre approval phase and then of course there's the the ultimate dream right the idea of of sending human explorers to venus Perhaps even as a first human venture to another world and it's just impossible not to be excited by these these i needed. We've all been led astray by bad advice before whether from misguided parent and ignorant mentor or an overconfident. Frat bro thankfully trojan brand condoms in iheartradio are here to blow up the worst life tips with the pleasure is ours in each episode of this new podcast host and youtube personality. Cody co invites. An incredibly funny guest or two to act as the older siblings. 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Because of all the places were discover is accepted which is ninety nine percent of places in the us that take credit cards so when it comes to discover get used to hearing yes more often learn more at discover dot com slash. Yes twenty twenty nielsen. Report limitations apply so for the rest of the episode. A thought we might talk about some of the more exciting concept's out there involving humans visiting or even staying for an extended amount of time in the atmosphere of venus and to kick this off. I want to read a quote from david grinspoon in his book. Venus revealed This is from chapter six and you can actually read this entire chapter. I believe at his website. Funky science dot net. Because he's doctor. What was his name handy spoon. I think yeah dr funky spin. Come on david. i love your work for. That's oh i think funky funky spent works. You're without branding. Okay yeah yeah so so anyway. Grinspoon writes the following quote. I have a fantasy of cloud cities on venus huge enclosed habitat suspended from giant balloons at a certain altitude where the temperature and pressure would be comfortable for us. We would mostly just have to keep the air fresh maybe by collecting solar energy to make oxygen from co two or better yet growing plants to do the job for us. Why should we bother to do such a thing. I don't know these could be research stations or maybe there will be some economic incentive. Something rare beautiful found only on venus or maybe in the very long run after we have solved all are major problems here on earth we will go just for the hell of it because it is there. I'm hoping the reason that we set up colonies on venus does not become a phosphine harvesting Enterprise were starting to get as much poison. Gas we can. Yeah i mean maybe the secret math reserves are the reason we go there who knows but i think this is a wonderful quote from from grinspoon. Because he's you know he's he's he's very much a scientist but he also has this this. This just raw wonder incentive science fictional curiosity too. You know just like like imagine what it would be like if we were there. And and we've we've had various versions of this in our science fiction over the years and you see other spins on this too right. I mean even Star wars you have Best been which i believe is a gas giant in star wars university. You have a cloud city there. You have a city floating in the sky. Few more amazing. It seems hard to imagine that you could actually have a city floating over a gas giant. Because i would think a gas giant we tend to admit levels of radiation. That would kill everybody in the cloud. City landau has it Cleaned up rather nicely. It looks looks pretty swank. well All this made me wonder. I was thinking to myself. What is the earliest example of science fiction pondering habitats within the clouds of venus. Or something like that. And i was looking around. I didn't. I didn't find anybody doing the work for me on this. Like conclusively Trying to answer this question. Maybe i just missed it in all things. I is all things. I'm happy to be corrected on this. If i'm wrong. But it seems like a possible answer comes from Astronomer and sci fi author garrett p service who wrote a book in nineteen o nine titled a columbus of space. Which i think you know in one thousand nine would have had nicer connotations the before the historical reassessment of columbus. Yeah so basically. This is about a human explorer who travels to venus in an atomic spaceship to explore the planet and there. He encounters two different psychic species. A sort of morlock species that lives on the planet surface and another species that lives in the clouds that are are basically humans or englishman You can find this. This full book is available on on project gutenberg. If you look it up. But i just want to read just a quick exchange here between two characters. This is after they have arrived in their atomic rocketship on into the atmosphere of venus and one says to the other. Those who airships airships yes surely exploring expedition. I shouldn't wonder. I anticipated something of that kind. You know already how dense the atmosphere of venus is it follows that balloons all sorts of machines for aerial navigation can flow much more easily here than over on earth. I was prepared to find the inhabitants of venus skilled in such things. And i'm not surprised by what we see so i just love the spirit of that. It's like yeah. Just as i imagined their flying ships on venus full of englishmen. This is exactly as i thought. I it would it would. This is exactly how. I thought it would pan out. I like your venus voice to now. Why is he saying that. They can float much more easily on venus than over. The earth is that because it was understood at the time that the atmosphere of venus was denser than earth's atmosphere. Yeah i guess that's the case here Like i say it doesn't. It certainly doesn't hold up too much. modern scrutiny. It's very it's very much old. Timey science fiction. And i think the thing is you see a lot of that. The the the golden age of science fiction is a time where we yes. We were gazing at mars and and in venus in wondering what was they're dreaming of canals on mars and so forth but at the same time it was a period in which we were enraptured by the technology of a flight of powered human flight and so you even in is it was even as we see modern re treatments of of this idea. We see that golden age enthusiasm Kind of creep in for instance. There's a short story that i i ran across. I haven't read. But it was published in two thousand and ten and asimov science fiction by geoffrey a landis. Who's not only a hard science fiction author but A nasa aerospace engineer. And he wrote of what is apparently a kind of like golden age Flavored sifi tale about there being habitats and ships in the atmosphere of venus. Like i think it has princesses and also. It's kind of edgar rice burroughs in its presentation okay. Cool his swashbuckling. maybe i would hope for buckling. You know that's gotta be a sword fights on a platform over the atmosphere of venus. That's bad news. Yeah i mean it's all part of the golden age zeal. the atmosphere is piranhas. Now the cool thing about balloons on venus is you don't have to go to science fiction to to think about them into read about them. All you have to do is look into space exploration history because we have sent balloons venus so back in one thousand nine hundred. Eighty five soviet union sentence vega mission to to earth's hot neighbor here so in addition to a lander vega featured two instrumental balloons traveled roughly thirty percent of the way around the planet. At an altitude of around fifty four kilometers sensors in a gondola attached to these balloons recorded such stats pressure temperature. Vertical wind velocity like that was apparently one of the interesting findings from that they got within these vertical You know a win columns and then you had clown particle back scatter ambient light level lightning frequency. These were essentially aero bots Now they only made it thirty percent of the way around because they ran out of batteries but they provided a battery power they. They provided some interesting data before they went off. Line now there were other atmospheric probes from the us in the ussr prior to this. But for instance the pioneer venus multi probe it didn't even use a parachute. It was just like cutting down through the atmosphere and collecting data on the way down. And we've talked about on the show. Before one of my favorite collections of images from from space exploration as the surfaces of venus that were sent back by the soviet venire lander venire lander use a balloon to descend a return. I believe so. I believe that That vega was was the first use of balloons on venus. Okay now in looking now. Of course it'd be a parachutes are kind of an additional category To consider so. I was looking around for what are some of the proposed. Venus missions venus missions. That may be undertaken in in the near or eventual future that will feature balloons or shoots so i thought might mention a few before getting into the one that really excites me so first of all. There's not to say that these are these are. These are not all exciting because they are exciting. Any kind of You know the future exploration venus is. It just inherently amazing. But you have nasr's davinci. This is the deep atmosphere of venus investigation of noble gases chemistry and imaging and this one is currently shortlisted So it's it seems like it. It may welcome to pass. And it does. It will entail a parachute probe that descends through the atmosphere and collects data on the way down k. So that one should be a big one. There's also the venus institute explore or vice is a proposed lander that would then release a meteorological meteorology balloon. I believe from the surface so the the the meteorology balloon would be released once. The the lander has made it down. I might be wrong on that. But that's the the The basic idea. That i'm getting from what was reading about it This has been proposed since two thousand and three by the planetary science kc survey. It hasn't made the cut yet but in the future it may also shuck ryan won a proposed indian space research organisation. Isro mission to venus. That would likely feature a vega. Ask probe Shukra by the way is the name for venus in sanskrit. So that's where they get it. I think the name literally means Venus craft or something to that effect. oh interesting. Another really cool one is and i think this one may have come up on the show before is Northrop grumman and l. guards proposed mission in the venus atmospheric maneuverable platform or. That looks like a futuristic. Well i would say actually kind of best been cloud city type airplane with with big wings going out on the sides. Yeah it's it's basically the cool thing is it's kind of a an an update of an idea that Northrop grumman has been putting out for decades. And that is the flying wayne. It is an inflatable. The concept is an inflatable flying wing. They would also boasts solar arrays On the top and it would And it would use those for its power along with some combination of batteries and a generator. That and i think have maybe not quite developed yet. It would be propeller-driven and it would be fully controllable though not in real time And this would be during the day so during the day when the sunlight is able to power it up to full power It would be soaring up to altitudes of seventy kilometers above the surface taking advantage of the solar intensity above the clouds and then night it would power down and dipped down to cruising floating altitude of around fifty six kilometers. Oh that's funny. So it's nighttime floating altitude might be right around where the phosphine was allegedly found if it was found. Yeah and at that point it would just be cruising or just floating now also interesting the vamp would actually The the idea is the vamp would probably inflate in space and inter the atmosphere with alton aeroshell this kind of sarcophagus to hold to protect it. A large surface area produces benign heating loads during entry. And this sort. Of course. I'll be supported by an accounting satellite and the vamp would last four months to possibly a year eventually losing out to the gradual loss of the buoyant gas incited. Today's episode is sponsored by mcdonald's. Here along with your donations. Mcdonald's helped support ronald mcdonald house charities to make sure that kids undergoing treatments have their family near and that they can cope together ronald mcdonald house. Charities gives families with sick kids a home away from home when they have to travel far for the care they need each year. Ronald mcdonald house. Charities programs in the us provide space for over one point. One million families to spend quality time together during tough moments. Mcdonald's serving here. This episode is brought to you by ibm today. Every answer matters more than ever before because whether it's about health deliveries or finance some things just can't wait that's why. Ibm's helping businesses manage millions of calls texts and chats with watson assistant it's conversational a i designed to help your customers find the answers. They need faster no matter the industry. Let's put smart to work with. Ibm dot com slash watson assistant to learn more the weight. I think we're about to get to your to your real baby here right. Yeah this is the one that i read a little bit about and then got excited and i was like oh man we gotta go back to venus and that is havoc hiv. Oh see this is. What got you sending your your harassing letters to nasa. Like dude that do have a canal. Havoc is just. This is one of those proposed missions where you read about it and it's as exciting as any movie or or vision. Show or sci short story. You might come across. Because it's unique and thrilling and it's hard to imagine the type of person who would do it but you know they exist. I mean this is the type of of of human being that goes on On a space mission but yeah this is the havoc high altitude. Venus operational concept and there are essentially two different versions of it. one is the robotic version. That would be the the necessary precursor to the the second variety which would be a crude nasa venus medicine so to be clear this is a this is a mission concept. It's not something that's like on track to to actually launch or be produced right now but it's sort of like it's on. The menu of things could be selected for future missions. Right we would. It had project itself. If it were to come to pass there would be like two or three would be multiple missions which i'll get into leading up to humans actually going but also it would not be our next. Venus mission You know under any circumstances like this. This is something we might be able to do in the future. you know. i'm embarrassed to say i while i was reading about this. I couldn't help but keep thinking about there. Was this terrible video game. Do you remember the command and conquer first person shooter. Who i don't know that i do. What what what. System era was this i think of. I think i played it on many many years ago. So command and conquer games are like real time strategy games you move all these like troops around and stuff how that they made one game in the series that set in the same universe. But you play this like marine guy who the first person shooter and the guy. You play named havoc very cool. And everybody's like have you. You don't go off mission you do. As you're told shooter thing general comment where you get it. The real time strategy games and now now because i was horrible at like i wanted to love them. They put out these these really well put together Don of wargames based on forty k. Stuff and i really wanted to love him. But i was just terrible at the just like chaos and loss i tried to play at any level is weeping and just watching the destruction of your forces in your empires. Yeah yeah. i've never been an elite gamer of any kind whatsoever. So no i'm not good at that or any other type of game. It just felt like too much multitasking. I i like games. Where i can be specific and strategic where i can pause and think i'm more of a a a turn based strategy versus real time strategy is just I'll i'll take the the turn based anytime. You're a magic the gathering morlock. Yeah yeah yeah not not whatever. Real-time magic is too too much pressure. All right so so back to have it. 'cause that was a terrible digression we could come out and you do know stays on. So basically in essence havoc entails the use of human exploration in the upper atmosphere aboard a helium airship. so this airship would be about A hundred and twenty nine meters or four hundred twenty three feet long thirty four meters one hundred and eleven feet tall so As the as it's as it's presented one of the The pdf's that i came across From from the people putting it together It would be about half the size of the hindenburg. But twice as long as sort of your average goodyear blimp. I love that. They're just reminding people of the hindenburg in the proposal. Yeah it another as zeppelin so so very much like whatever. You're picturing in in mind for like a blimp or zeppelin airship. Like that's basically the initial look of what their proposed but there are going to be some key differences as well so i ll propeller-driven gondola on the bottom. You know this is the habit Habitable portion of it would contain both an atmospheric habitat for two crew members over twenty eight days along with an ascent vehicle essentially a rocket with an ascent habitat on the front of it. That would at the end of its time in the atmosphere allow to crew members to rock it back to the transit vehicle in low of the orbit for the return trip. Oh that's interesting because one of big questions about a crewed missions to other planetary bodies like mars or something like that. Is you know how you gonna leave the plan. How do you get back. Backup off. So you probably need to take some kind of rocket with you that we need to be able to attain escape velocity. I wonder is it easier to leave a planet if you're in the atmosphere as opposed on the surface of course it. It would be easier right. You'd need less force less thrust to escape from there than you would from the surface. Yep is a different different scenario than you encounter thinking about these other planets like mars are thinking about traveling to earth's moon for example because again this is one of the crazy things a trip like this to venus would not entail actually setting foot on the planet. You would never go down to the true of venus firma You know you would only be going into the upper atmosphere hanging out there for like against something like twenty eight days and then returning to low orbit from there. yeah something. that's not usually considered. Are we think of visiting other planets in a binary you've got orbit then you've got surface activity in this would be inbetween. It's like if you were planning a visit to new york city but you're you're you weren't actually travel to Time square you know. They limit yourself to the very outer boroughs right and then return home. Yeah i just. Went on vacation to queens. No disparaging queens by the way that anything should be disparaging times square like that. You shouldn't land. Landing in times square is like landing on the surface of venus. What were you thinking going in that deep. You need a rocket to escape the bubba gump shrimp. So i recommend everyone look up pictures of the concept the models. They've put together for this because it is great. It's like this. The gondola with the propellers the ascent vehicle again looks very much like a cool rocket. Harnessed behind it It's very neat We in essence. We'd be talking about sending three habitats on the havoc mission. So there'd be the transit habitat that the crew members would be in on the way to and from the planet venus. This would be the space Habitat there'd be the and then there would be the atmospheric habitat on the gondola. That would be where they'd been in their twenty eight days and then or less depending on how it goes and then the sent a habitat is the one on the front of that rocket just to get them back up into orbit so they can get back into the transit habitat in return home. Well i gotta say that does sound complicated. I think the have a lot of moving pieces like that. You introduce it increasing difficulty into the mission right. Yeah because in all mission would see. The ship arrived at venus. Then drop in airship from london orbit on a parachute okay. Parachutes in towards the upper atmosphere. It's going to drop its aeroshell. It's protective circus. it's gonna then unfurl and inflate the helium blimp. It's gonna drop the parachute altogether and And it's going to carry out atmospheric activities for up to twenty eight days then when the time comes to leave. The two crew members hopping the ascent vehicle. Return to low. The newseum orbit leaving the airship to continue on for the duration of its life In the atmosphere they get back in the transit vehicle and they returned back to earth. I hope the airship would get to send pictures back as it sinks down into the atmosphere gradually over time. I assume that would be part of it. You know sort of using every part of the buffalo on the mission you know like planning out exactly what it's gonna do for the rest of its life. Now they see this. Being ultimately they're being five phases to this branch of of venus exploration so phase one would be a robotic version of the same concept. Just obviously do it without people and see how feasible it is. Phase two would be a thirty day mission to bring the crew to orbit around venus but then not deal with the atmosphere at all face three would be a thirty day mission to bring the crew to the atmosphere and this would be the the model we just discussed phase. Four they touch on would be a version that entails a one year voyage in the atmosphere so like the next. This is like the stretch goal for this particular project and then ultimately phase five would be the grinspoon special a permanent human presence in gondola habitats. up there in the upper atmosphere of venus. Hopefully small enough that you don't fall. Under the jurisdiction of the empire at all so so advocates of this mission and just venus missions in general point out that the venus has an induced magnetosphere from the interaction of its thick atmosphere with the solar wind and it's nearer proximity to the sun brings it further within the sun's magnetic field so there's arguably less of a cosmic radiation risk compared to mars. It's also easier to get to making it by some estimates an ideal for step in reaching mars Now this i don't know you may be getting into a little like vs team mars competition here. Something that grinspoon was talking about. You know the the the legitimate rivalries there. Yeah but But the shortest possible distance from earth to venus is something like thirty eight million kilometers versus fifty. Six million kilometers for mars and a year on venus is much shorter. So you know. Christmas comes earlier there. Yeah the again. We have to do have to stress though havoc as well as stuff like that. It very much just mission concepts at this point. It's nothing on the books. Davinci i think is going to probably be the project that gets the nod next We'll see how it goes but either way. Venus missions are only an option every nineteen months because i mentioned that the closest distance. We've touched on this before. Like if you're talking about going to know how to another planet it depends on where earth is in relation to that planet long journey you're talking and you want of course Calculated so that you're making the shortest voyage a possible to reach that other planted. Yeah so as somebody who feels a lot of sympathy for the venus partisans and the rivalries between the planetary scientists i I hope that this study. From september of twenty twenty this year and the subsequent research whether it turns out that there's good evidence for the presence of phosphine gas or not. I hope this at least spurs More attention to venus gets more un crewed missions there at least To awaken the hunger for venus knowledge among the people generally. Yeah yeah just to build public interest in venus like it's a strange and exciting planet and admissions havoc alone. Should be one of these programs that Everyone should look at because it makes me more excited about about venus. Just think about people can you. can you imagine. Can you imagine the footage much less being there. That's that's a step too far for me to imagine being aboard this vessel in the scab within the skies are kind of the clouds of an alien world but just to see the footage of that that journey. That would be amazing totally agree. I can't wait to see where we where we go from here. Yeah is that the end if we're if we're the doorways. Is it time to close ourselves on the way out. I guess it is yeah. Obviously we could talk more about venus and went up. We do talk more about venus. The you know maybe maybe we can. They can get get grinspoon back on the program to talk about. I know he he discussed potentially writing more about venus. That book that he wrote about venus came out many years ago. So it's probably overdue for re exploration totally. In the meantime we'd love to hear from everyone out there What are your thoughts about. Venus venus exploration or some of the missions. We've talked about here. What are your thoughts about the possibility of life in venus. Do you other examples of of early science fictional visions of balloons in the atmosphere of venus. Let us know we'd love to hear from you likewise just space science in general and other planets are. Would you like us to do more episodes like this in the future. Is there a particular planet that we have not to that you would like us visit Reach out to us and let us know In the meantime just rate reviewing subscribed the show wherever you get the ability to do so and if Oh if you go to stuff to blow your mind dot com that'll take you over to our iheart listing for the show and there's they button there or a listing there somewhere you can click on store and that will take you over to our t. Shirt shop you can get some t shirts stickers tote bags or what have you with our logo on them or some cool designs like a monster lists corre pandora opening up a box full of all the problems and challenging ideas in the world. It's all they're still waiting on our weird house cinema mad love man t shirt. But i'm hoping that'll happen soon. Right okay huge. Thanks as always to our excellent audio producer. Seth nicholas johnson. 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