Web edition: March 25, 2011
Print edition: April 9, 2011; Vol.179 #8 (p. 4)
REMAKE VENUS ‘WEATHER’ — Man can land on the mystery planet Venus after making its air suitable for humans. This job could be done by dropping primitive plants into the planet’s atmosphere, then waiting for results. The primitive algae would remove the carbon dioxide believed to poison the air on Venus for humans. The result would be carbon and oxygen. Dr. Carl Sagan of the University of California, Berkeley, believes the best algae to drop on Venus are the blue-green algae (primarily of the Nostocaceae family). He said many experiments on developing algae in a simulated atmosphere like that on Venus should be made … [but] should only come after the existing conditions on Venus have been thoroughly investigated.