Venus South Polar Region at 1.7 micron
This night-side, false-colour image was taken by the Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) on board Venus Express on 23 September 2006, from a distance of 60 000 kilometres. At the time, Venus Express was close to the apocentre.
The image shows an area close to the south pole (out of the field of view beyond the top left of the image) at 1.7-μm. The bright big spot on the left corresponds to an area where the cloud deck is thinner, allowing the thermal radiation from below the cloud deck to more easily escape with respect to the surrounding areas, making the area appear brighter.