Why would Venus appear oval?
Venus has been seen countless times from the surface of the Earth, and every time the
has dispersed its light to some degree.
When the air has just the right amount of dust or water droplets, small but distant objects like Venus appear spread out into an angularly large aureole.
Aureoles are not unusual to see and are frequently noted as circular
coronas around the
Recently, however, aureoles have been imaged that are not circular but distinctly
The above oval Venusian aureole was imaged by the
who first noted the unusual phenomenon three years ago.
Initially disputed, the
unusual distortion has now been
confirmed multiple times by several different astrophotographers.
What causes the ellipticity is
currently unknown, and although several
that horizontally oriented
ice crystals are responsible, significant
discussions about it are still taking place.