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Lakshmi Planum

Plateau on Venus

A wide lava plain that fills the western parts of the highlands of Ishtar Terra in the northern latitudes of Venus. By convention, such features on Venus are named after goddesses of prosperity, and Lakshmi Planum takes its name from Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth and good fortune.

The plain itself forms a very approximately circular plateau, more than 2,300km (about 1,400 miles) across and standing some 3.5km (more than 2 miles) above the mean planetary radius. It is generally flat in comparison with the rugged highlands that surround it, but its origin in lava flows is shown by a series of striated linear patterns striping its surface. Within the plain lie two circular structures, each with a diameter of about 200km (or 120 miles). These are Colette Patera and Sacajawea Patera, the calderas of two huge extinct volcanoes.

Lakshmi Planum is surrounded on three sides by mountain ranges: Freyja Montes to the north, Akna Montes to the west and Danu Montes to the south. Its eastern edge is less clearly defined, instead rising more gradually into the heights of the Maxwell Montes that divide it from Ishtar Terra's other major region, Fortuna Tessera beyond the high mountain range.


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