Volcanism main content.

Volcanism

Volcanism_HERO AMNH/D. Finnin

Exhibition Text

Volcanoes provide an efficient way for solid planets and moons to shed their internal heat. Much of this heat arises from radioactivity in their interiors. Some moons are also heated by internal friction due to gravitational forces from their host planet. Volcanism has occurred on all the terrestrial planets and on the larger moons, causing extensive resurfacing on some of them. Jupiter’s moon Io is the most volcanically active world in the solar system.

For Educators

Topic: Astronomy

Subtopic: Planets

Keywords: Radioactivity, Volcanism, Moon, Planets, Satellites, Io (Satellite), Extrasolar planets, Astrogeology

Audience: General

Volcanoes

Volcanoes provide an efficient way for solid planets and moons to shed their internal heat. Much of this heat arises from radioactivity in their interiors. Some moons are also heated by internal friction due to gravitational forces from their host planet. Volcanism has occurred on all the terrestrial planets and on the larger moons, causing extensive resurfacing on some of them. Jupiter’s moon Io is the most volcanically active world in the solar system.

Volcano Examples

Volcano Examples