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The Support of Long Wavelength Loads on VenusOne of the great surprises of the Pioneer Venus mission was the high degree of correlation between topography and gravity found at all wavelengths. This implies a close relationship between topography and lateral subsurface density anomalies, such as those due to passive or dynamic compensation. Sleep-Phillips type compensation model with a variable crustal thickness and a variable upper mantle density was developed. The thin shell theory was used to investigate three end member cases: (1) loading by topographic construction, resulting in a downward deflection of the surface (no mantle support); (2) completely compensated support of a constructional load (no surface deflection); and (3) topography due entirely to upward deflection of the surface supported by a low density upper mantle (no surface load). In general, the models imply relatively thick crust and dense upper mantle for Ishtar Terra and Ovda Regio (western Aphrodite), thinned crust and buoyant upper mantle for Tethus Regio and regions near Sappho and Alpha Regio, and a nearly uniform crust with a buoyant upper mantle for Beta Regio and Atla Regio (eastern Aphrodite).
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Benerdt, W. B.
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Saunders, R. S.
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 12, 2013
Publication Date
April 1, 1985
Publication Information
Publication: NASA, Washington Repts. of Planetary Geol. and Geophys. Program, 1984
Subject Category
Lunar And Planetary Exploration
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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