Many workers assume that tessera terrain—marked by multiple tectonic lineaments and exposed in crustal plateaus—comprises a global “onion skin” on Venus. A growing body of structural, mechanical, magmatic, gravitational-topographic, and geologic evidence indicates that tesserae record the local interaction of individual deep-mantle plumes with an ancient, globally thin Venusian lithosphere, resulting in local regions of thickened crust.

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