Home to the newly-founded Morningstar Constellation, the solar system’s second planet is two distinct planets. The surface is a swirl of high pressure atmosphere, toxic gases, and incredibly high temperatures. Above, the aerostat cities float on the upper atmosphere, hospitable to most transhuman life.
The planet has 90% of Earth’s gravity, uncommon elsewhere since the mass evacuation of the homeworld. Visitors usually spend a day at Gerlach station to adapt to the relatively high gravity. Venus also has a 243 day-long planetary day, which the aerostats bypass by moving with the wind.
- With temperatures reaching 500 C, molten lead, acid clouds, and pressures 100 times that of Earth, the surface is only used for the resources buried below it. The only known inhabitants of the surface are synthmorphs (about 10,000) adapted with quartz bodies, tele-operated, but there are rumors of Exsurgent mutants who roam the terrain.
- At about 52 kilometers above the surface, Venus’ atmosphere becomes similar to Earth’s, though consisting mostly of carbon dioxide. The cities float on the jet-streams at 100-150 kph, changing location, though staying within 70 degrees latitude of the equator.
- Based on the basic concept of a balloon, the cities’ architecture includes light-weight materials and high-ceiling open spaces. All of the aerostats have super-strong cables for transit/communication to the surface, though Octavia and Lucifer have the best equipment.
- City Descriptions
- Aphrodite Prime: Venus’ prime tourist destination, this city of 300,000 is at the forefront of what will become aerostat culture and genetics. A gigantic habitat at the city’s center holds the gas proportions and flora and fauna that scientists project will be common within a century.
- Lucifer: Home to 230,000 citizens, this city handles the plurality of mining interests for the planet, with specially designed features to descend into the atmosphere to allow cables to be laid. 5,000 infomorphs do most of the gruntwork, with local and foreign hypercorp interests overseeing management.
- Octavia: The nominal capital of the Morningstar Constellation, Octavia acts as the spaceport for the planet, with embassies and hypercorps offices. With a half million residents, it has a cosmopolitan feeling, with the push-and-pull of old and new economic interests. It is also home to the Nimbus hypercorp and the Neo-Synergist sect, a famous hive-mind collective.
- Parvarti: Independent of the Constellation, this aerostat is infamous for its red-light services, as well as its discretion.
- The Shack: The birthplace of all aerostats, this city manufactures the foundations of aerostat habitats. Each citizen acts as a shareholder for the city.
- Deep Reach: At an altitude of 10 kilometers, this research facility only has a few onsite staff, most tele-operated from the Far Reach orbital station.
- Etemenanki: The only aerostat city still allied to the Planetary Consortium, home to hypercorp dynasty vacation homes.
- Machu Picchu: Notable for its rotating mayor, a position eligible for any competent citizen
- Selenis: A nanosocialist community with resources held in common.
- Shakura: Run by citizens and local hypercorps, this aerostat is famously known as “Silicon Cloud” for its burgeoning technologies community.
- Orbital Habitats
- Cythera: This hypercorp-heavy habitat of 50,000 specializes in designing new lifeforms for the aerial terraforming effort.
- Far Reach: Owned by Omnicor, this station of 75,000 oversees the mining and chemical research done at the aerostat Deep Reach.
- Frostfire: To aid the terraforming effort, the Constellation oversees the asteroid and comet processing facility on this habitat of 35,000.
- Gerlach: Venus’ other spaceport, Gerlach was originally designed as a nature preserve. After the Fall, it acted a refugee waystation, but has now returned to its original purpose, with about 200,000 residents, with a very radical bent. The station is not officially a member of the Constellation, instead acting as an ambassador to Extropian and Autonomist interests.
- Thought: One of Cognite’s main research facilities, this torus experiments extensively with AI.