Chapter 8.1 Venus: A Thin-Lithosphere Analog for Early Earth?

Vicki L. Hansen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

17 Scopus citations


Heat transfer processes drive terrestrial planet evolution. The heat budget, structure and rheology likely change throughout the evolution of terrestrial planets. Similarities and differences between Venus and Earth provide a valuable tectonic experiment that might provide critical clues to understanding the earlier history of our own planet, which may have experienced early tectonic processes quite different than its current trademark plate tectonics. Within the last 15 years, Venus' surface has become visible and accessible to anyone with world-wide-web connection, making Venus 'field work' accessible and inexpensive. Venus' environmental boundary conditions are certainly different than contemporary Earth, and may be more similar in many ways to Earth's Hadean to Archean Era. Any understanding of Venus tectonic processes and planet evolution are surely still in a nascent stage, and yet Venus serves as a rich tectonic playground to stretch one's imagination, and to challenge one to think beyond the elegance of plate tectonics in constructing hypotheses of ancient terrestrial planet processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEarth's Oldest Rocks
EditorsMartin Kranendonk, Hugh Smithies, Vickie Bennett
Number of pages26
StatePublished - 2007

Publication series

NameDevelopments in Precambrian Geology
ISSN (Print)0166-2635

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


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