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Venus: Interpreting the spatial distribution of volcanically modified craters

O'Rourke, Joseph G. and Wolf, Aaron S. and Ehlmann, Bethany L. (2014) Venus: Interpreting the spatial distribution of volcanically modified craters. Geophysical Research Letters, 41 (23). pp. 8252-8260. ISSN 0094-8276.

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To understand the impact cratering record on Venus, we investigate two distinct resurfacing styles: localized, thin flows and large shield volcanoes. We statistically analyze the size-frequency distribution of volcanically modified craters and, using Monte Carlo simulations, their spatial distribution. Lava flows partially fill most craters, darkening their floors in radar images. We find that a model featuring localized, thin flows occurring throughout geologic time predicts their observed distribution. Individual flows may be morphologically indistinguishable, but, combined, they cover large provinces. Recent mantle plumes may drive a small amount of hot spot magmatism that produces the observed clusters of large shield volcanoes and obviously embayed craters. Ultimately, our analysis demonstrates that two styles of volcanism are needed to explain the observed properties of impact craters and that catastrophic resurfacing is not required.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription
O'Rourke, Joseph G.0000-0002-1180-996X
Ehlmann, Bethany L.0000-0002-2745-3240
Additional Information:© 2014 American Geophysical Union. Received 7 OCT 2014; Accepted 21 NOV 2014; Accepted article online 26 NOV 2014; Published online 11 DEC 2014. The corresponding author will provide all data and code used for this study on request. The original LPI and USGS databases of impact craters on Venus are available for download from the websites of their host institutions. J.G. O'Rourke is supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. We thank S. Smrekar and R. Phillips for extremely constructive reviews. The Editor thanks Roger Phillips and Suzanne Smrekar for their assistance in evaluating this paper.
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NSF Graduate Research FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Venus
Issue or Number:23
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20150513-074618855
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Official Citation:O'Rourke, J. G., A. S. Wolf, and B. L. Ehlmann (2014), Venus: Interpreting the spatial distribution of volcanically modified craters, Geophys. Res. Lett., 41, 8252–8260, doi:10.1002/2014GL062121.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:57473
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:13 May 2015 17:54
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:18

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