Aphrodite Terra

Aphrodite Terra
a large plateau region that stretches approximately halfway around the middle latitude of Venus.

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▪ Venusian surface feature
      the larger of two continent-sized highland areas (terrae) on the planet Venus. Aphrodite lies along Venus's equator and extends from about longitude 60° E to 150° E. It is about twice the size of Ishtar Terra and comparable in surface area to South America.

      The elevation of Aphrodite is significantly higher than that of most of Venus, lying mostly between 1 and 5 km (0.6 and 3 miles) above the mean planetary radius. Its western extremity consists of two large curving ridges that partially surround a broad circular region of low-lying rugged terrain. Most of Aphrodite is formed by two broad upland regions, Ovda Regio in the central part and Thetis Regio farther east. Ovda spans about 4,000 km (2,500 miles) from north to south; Thetis, about 3,000 km (1,900 miles). Both are composed primarily of tessera (Latin: “mosaic tile”) terrain. Extraordinarily rugged and highly deformed, tessera terrain typically displays several different trends of parallel ridges and troughs that cut across one another with a very complex geometry. This topography may have been formed by several episodes of mountain building and faulting (fault), each superimposed on its predecessor. At its eastern extremity Aphrodite Terra merges into a complex of rift valleys and other tectonic features (see tectonic landform). The geologic processes that formed Aphrodite remain to be established, but they probably included thickening of the Venusian crust in response to motions in the planet's mantle.

Steven W. Squyres

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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