Fotla Corona

Fotla Corona

Fig. 7.21 . Large circular and oval structures with diameters of 0.2 to 1.0 thousand kilometers are called coronae. The one shown at the center of this Magellan image is known as Fotla Corona, about 200 kilometers across and named after the Celtic fertility goddess. It is located in a vast plain to the south of Aphrodite Terra, and is centered at 59 degrees south latitude and 164 degrees east longitude. Molten rock rising from the interior of the planet most likely explains the corona’s circular shape, raised topography, complex fractures, and associated volcanism. Just north (top) of this corona is a flat-topped pancake dome, about 35 kilometers in diameter, thought to have formed by the eruption of sluggish, pasty lava. Another pancake dome is located inside the western (left) part of the corona. There is also a smooth, flat region in the center of the corona, probably a relatively young lava flow. Complex fracture patterns like the one in the northeast (top-right) of the image are often observed in association with coronae. (Courtesy of NASA/JPL.)

Copyright 2010, Professor Kenneth R. Lang, Tufts University