Envision is a medium class mission competing for the M5 call of ESA and currently in phase A. Its targeted launch date is 2032. Its objectives are to determine the surface geology of Venus, the possible current activity and its interactions with the planet’s atmosphere in order to understand how Venus and Earth have evolved so differently.
Four main scientific themes have been defined for the mission:
Is Venus still geologically active today? At what scale?
How was the past environment, the erosion processes, the resurfacing processes?
What are the couplings between the interior, the surface and the atmosphere of the planet?
Geodynamics, internal structure evolution, gravity field of the planet.
Involvement of IRAP
IRAP is part of an international consortium developing the imaging spectrometer instruments of the mission. These spectrometers will cover wavelength ranges from the UV to the infrared, and will detect time variations of the surface temperature and volcanic gas concentrations in the atmosphere. These measurements will be key in determining the relationship between surface activity and the planet’s atmosphere.
IRAP is responsible for the mechanical design concept of the UV channel of the instrument, called VESUV.
The consortium involves other French laboratories for the UV channel (PI: Emmanuel Marcq LATMOS, LESIA, IRAP, LMD), and German and Belgian institutes for the infrared channels (PI: Jörn Helbert, DLR ; PI: Ann Carine Vandaele, BISA).