“The crust, being so thin, must bend, if, over wide areas, it becomes loaded with glacial ice, ocean water or deposits of sand and mud. It must bend in the opposite sense if widely extended loads of such material be removed. This accounts for… the origin of chains of high mountains… and the rise of lava to the earth’s surface.” –Reginald Daly, 1932
When you think about volcanoes, you quite likely think about magma — liquid rock — accumulating and welling up beneath the Earth’s surface. Every once in a while, this ultra-hot liquid seeps through the Earth’s surface, resulting in a spectacular eruption.
Earth is the largest, most massive and most volcanically active rocky world in the Solar System, which is what you’d expect if the other planets are smaller and have less internal energy. Except I lied; there’s one world in the Solar System that’s so volcanically active that it has no craters on its surface, because it’s constantly flowing with magma.
Come and meet Jupiter’s closest Moon, Io, and learn the story of how Jupiter acts like a cosmic zamboni, resurfacing it on a continuous basis.