Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms

2015 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Hargitai, Ákos Kereszturi

Deformed Crater (Tectonized)

  • Audeliz Matias
  • Donna M. JurdyEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-3134-3_154


A crater that has been partially or completely modified by tectonic process after its formation.


A type of  modified crater



Deformed craters typically display anomalous cuts produced by faults or fractures of tectonic and/or volcanic origin.


The degree of deformation varies according to the process causing the deformation and the target region where the crater was formed.


The morphology of the crater will vary depending upon the deformation process. The deformation of craters appears to be restricted to only a fraction of the rocky and icy bodies such as Venus and Ganymede. Deformed craters are assumed to be originally circular. Any deviation from this shape is assumed to be an indication of modification after formation by some sort of tectonic process. For example, impact craters with an elongated cavity suggest extensional forces, whereas a...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Basilevsky AT, Head JW (2002) Venus: Analysis of the degree of impact crater deposit degradation and assessment of its use for dating geological units and features. J Geophys Res 107:5061. doi:10.1029/2001JE001584CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Figueredo PH, Greeley R, the Galileo SSI team (1999) Fracture patterns on Ganymede and the initiation of tectonic resurfacing. Lunar Planet Sci XXX, abstract #1832, HoustonGoogle Scholar
  3. Head JW, Mruchie SL, Prockter LM, Solomon SC, Strom RG, Chapman CR, Watters TR, Blewett DT, Gillis-Davis JJ, Fassett CI, Dickson JL, Hurwitz DM, Ostrach LR (2009) Evidence for intrusive activity on Mercury from the first MESSENGER flyby. Earth Planet Sci Lett 285:251–262CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Ivanov MA, Head JW (2011) Global geological map of Venus. Planet Space Sci 59:1559–1600CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Joziak LM, Head JW, Zuber MT, Smith DE, Neumann GA (2012) Lunar floor-fractured craters: classification, distribution, origin and implications for magmatism and shallow crustal structure. J Geophys Res 117:E11005. doi:10.1029/2012JE004134CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Matias A, Jurdy DM (2005) Impact craters as indicators of tectonic and volcanic activity in the Beta-Atla-Themis region, Venus. In: Foulger GR, Natland JH, Presnall DC, Anderson DL (eds) Plates, plumes, and paradigms, Geological Society of America special paper 388. Geological Society of America, Boulder, pp 825–839Google Scholar
  7. Pappalardo RT, Collins GC (2005) Strained craters on Ganymede. J Struct Geol 27:827–838CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Prockter LM, Figueredo PH, Pappalardo RT, Head JW III, Collins GC (2000) Geology and mapping of dark terrain on Ganymede and implications for grooved terrain formation. J Geophys Res 105(E9):22519–22540CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Schultz PH (1976) Floor-fractured lunar craters. Moon 15:241–273Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Distance LearningSUNY Empire State CollegeSaratoga SpringsUSA
  2. 2.Earth and Planetary SciencesNorthwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA