Without a single doubt, Venus is not a suitable destination for any vacation. Despite being the second brightest cosmic object from the night sky, our neighboring planet is completely uninhabitable due to its extreme conditions. The average temperature on the surface reaches 847 degrees F, which is hot enough to melt lead.
But luckily enough for all of us, there is still plenty of new information to learn about Venus. A new study reveals that what is known as ‘Earth’s sister planet’ is a geologically active world today. Scientists led by geophysicist Anna Gülcher from ETH Zürich in Switzerland have identified significant features on Venus that could have been created by volcanoes from the very recent past.
Numerous active volcanoes suspected to be present on Venus
Laurent Montési, a co-author of the study and professor of geology at the University of Maryland, declared:
This is the first time we are able to point to specific structures and say, ‘Look, this is not an ancient volcano but one that is active today — dormant, perhaps, but not dead,
This study significantly changes the view of Venus from a mostly inactive planet to one whose interior is still churning and can feed many active volcanoes.
Venus’ volcanic activity may have continued much later into the planet’s history, and maybe even through to the present day. The latest evidence point to this idea, as the researchers involved had been using computer simulations to model in detail the formation and evolution of ring-shaped volcanic structures from Venus, which are also known as coronae. These coronae are created by plumes of molten rock that rise from the mantle and go up through the crust. It’s a process similar to the one that led to the formation of the Hawaiian Islands.
The new study was published in the journal Nature Geoscience.