Volcanic and Tectonic Processes Across the Solar System

Paul Byrne, North Carolina State University

Volcanism and tectonism are two of the leading processes that shape planetary surfaces throughout the Solar System. Volcanic activity produces planetary crusts, buries ancient surfaces, and moderates atmospheric composition. Tectonics record local-, regional-, and global-scale processes and offer insight into the internal structure and vigor of a planetary body. And, as both processes reflect the thermal evolution of a world, the geological records of the two are often closely linked. In this talk, Byrne will highlight some of the recent developments in our understanding of the volcanic and tectonic characteristics of a range of bodies across the Solar System and beyond—from the volcanotectonic evolution of Mercury, to evidence of a mobile lithosphere on Venus, to the prospect of geological activity at the seafloors of icy satellites and ocean worlds. Through a combination of remote sensing, analogue and numerical modeling, and fieldwork Byrne will discuss current and future efforts to better understand how volcanism and tectonism make planetary bodies look the way they do.