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Thetis Regio

Region on Venus

Aphrodite Terra is a long 'continent' of highlands that runs along the equator of Venus, and is divided into two distinct plateaux. The larger of these is the western plateau, Ovda Regio, but the eastern plateau is only slightly smaller. This is Thetis Regio, running for nearly 3,000km west-to-east, and some 1,500km north-to-south. The region takes its name from the mythological Thetis, mother of Achilles, who also gives her name to asteroid 17 Thetis.

The view southward from Thetis Regio

A view southward from the equatorial heights of Thetis Regio on Venus. The arcing valley in the centre left of this image is a part of Artemis Chasma, which runs far to the south of Thetis Regio before looping back to rejoin the highlands in the west (or to the right, from this point of view).

The highlands of Thetis Regio rise up about four kilometres from the plains that surround them, thrust upward by exteme tectonic activity. The surface of the plateau is shattered into the broken Venusian landscape feature known as tesserae, suggesting that major geological forces were at work here in the relatively recent past - that is, within a few tens of millions of years ago.

Through the southeastern parts of the region runs a deep trench, Artemis Chasma, that extends out from the main massif of Thetis Regio to form a vast near-circular structure known as a corona. This example, Artemis Corona, has a diameter of some 2,600km, making it the largest such structure in the Solar System.


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