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Of all the other planets in the Solar System, it is the one nearest to Earth and most like it in terms of mass, but has no magnetic field or recognizable plate tectonic system.Much of the ground surface is exposed volcanic bedrock, some with thin and patchy layers of soil covering, in marked contrast with Earth, the Moon, and Mars.

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There are shield and composite volcanoes similar to those found on Earth.

Given that Venus has approximately the same size, density, and composition as Earth, it is plausible that volcanism may be continuing on the planet today, although convincing direct observations of a volcanic eruption have not yet occurred, leaving modern volcanism an open question.

The high dielectric minerals would be stable at the ambient temperatures in the highlands, but not on the plains that comprise the rest of the planet's surface.

Pyrite, an iron sulfide, matches these criteria and is widely suspected as a possible cause; it would be produced by chemical weathering of the volcanic highlands after long-term exposure to the sulfur-bearing Venusian atmosphere.

Despite the relatively flat landscape of Venus, the altimetry data also found large inclined plains.

Such is the case on the southwest side of Maxwell Montes, which in some parts seems to be inclined some 45°.

Volcanism appears to be the dominant agent of geological change on Venus.

Some of the volcanic landforms appear to be unique to the planet.

According to the Magellan data, 80% of the topography is within 1-kilometre (0.62 mi) of the median radius.

The most important elevations are in the mountain chains that surround Lakshmi Planum: Maxwell Montes (11 km, 6.8 mi), Akna Montes (7 km, 4.3 mi) and Freya Montes (7 km, 4.3 mi).

Tectonic features are present to a limited extent, including linear "deformation belts" composed of folds and faults. Many of the tectonic features such as tesserae (large regions of highly deformed terrain, folded and fractured in two or three dimensions), and arachnoids (for those features resembling a spider's web) are associated with volcanism.

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