QUOTE (ngunn @ Oct 11 2007, 08:46 AM)
Thanks for posting that. The word 'isotopologue' is new to me, as is the fact that molecular mass asymmetry not only displaces normal spectral features slightly but creates completely new absorption bands. IIRC normal CO2 is not an effective greenhouse gas on Venus because Venus is hotter than Earth and emits mainly shorter IR wavelengths. (I believe it's water vapour that works on Venus as normal CO2 does here.) So this lopsided CO2 and its special effects are a really exciting discovery.
Water vapor is actually the primary greenhouse gas on Earth, to such an extend that it's maxed out. CO2 isn't maxed out, and that's why global warming scientists believe that it is such a problem, but that's a topic for another thread. Still, the massive amounts of CO2 on Venus, while they might not be in the primary spectrum regions, would still act as quite an efficient greenhouse gas, although water vapor might be more effective there as it is here.