Eli5: If Mercury is closest to the sun, why is Venus hotter?


Eli5: If Mercury is closest to the sun, why is Venus hotter?

In: 6

Venus has a much thicker atmosphere, a large percentage of which is CO2. Same greenhouse effect we’re concerned about here on Earth cranked way, way up.

If I’m not mistaken Mercury might be hotter on the sun-facing side, but cools off considerably at night. Venus stays quite hot anywhere on the surface because of its atmosphere.

venus has a very dense atmosphere that resulted in a seriously enchanhced greenhouse effect that traps almost all of the energy it receives from the Sun.

Unlike with Mercury that due to basically not having an atmosphere+ being tidally locked ot the sun makes it so the side facing it gets very hot but the side away from it loses all of this energy.

Mercury has virtually no atmosphere. During the day, the temperature gets very high, but at night all of that heat just gets radiated back into space and the surface temperature plunges well below freezing.

Venus on the other hand has a very thick atmosphere composed mostly of carbon dioxide. This causes a greenhouse effect, preventing the heat from being radiated back into space.

To actually explain it the like you’re five:

Venus has a very thick atmosphere and it acts like a blanket. Blankets aren’t warm on their own, they just keep your hear close to you. Mercury doesn’t have the same blanket so while it’s close to the sun. It doesn’t hold onto that heat as much. That’s why mercury is colder despite being closer