Convection in a volatile nitrogen-ice-rich layer drives Pluto's geological vigour.

  title={Convection in a volatile nitrogen-ice-rich layer drives Pluto's geological vigour.},
  author={W. B. McKinnon and F. Nimmo and T. Wong and P. Schenk and O. L. White and J. H. Roberts and J. M. Moore and J. Spencer and A. D. Howard and O. M. Umurhan and S. A. Stern and H. A. Weaver and C. B. Olkin and L. A. Young and K. E. Smith},
  volume={534 7605},
  • W. B. McKinnon, F. Nimmo, +12 authors K. E. Smith
  • Published 2016
  • Medicine, Physics, Geology
  • Nature
  • The vast, deep, volatile-ice-filled basin informally named Sputnik Planum is central to Pluto's vigorous geological activity. Composed of molecular nitrogen, methane, and carbon monoxide ices, but dominated by nitrogen ice, this layer is organized into cells or polygons, typically about 10 to 40 kilometres across, that resemble the surface manifestation of solid-state convection. Here we report, on the basis of available rheological measurements, that solid layers of nitrogen ice with a… CONTINUE READING
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