Science Buzz

Venus is still volcanically active

The surface of the planet Venus

Scientists have discovered 37 volcanic structures on Venus that appear to be still active today. This discovery has refuted the fact that Venus is a dormant planet.

Venus has shown evidence of a warm interior and geological activity on its surface through coronae, ring-like structures that form when plumes of hot material rise up through mantle layer and crust from deep within the planet.

Previously, the coronae were considered signs of ancient volcanic activity and that Venus had cooled enough to slow geological activity in the planet’s heart and harden the crust so much that any warm material from deep inside would not be able to puncture through. But the new study suggests otherwise.

Scientists created high-res 3D simulations of coronae formation. These simulations showed coronae on Venus are still evolving which indicates that the planet’s interior is still active.

The active coronae on Venus are clustered in a handful of locations, suggesting areas where the planet is most volcanically active, which can provide clues as to the workings of the planet’s interior. The study’s results can help identify target areas where geologic instruments should be placed on future missions to Venus, such as Europe’s EnVision, scheduled to launch in 2032.