feb 212013
 
Long Ago, Mercury Probably Harbored a Vast Magma Ocean

  Massive lava flows may have given rise to two distinct rock types on Mercury’s surface   By analyzing Mercury’s rocky surface, scientists have been able to partially reconstruct the planet’s history over billions of years. Now, drawing upon the chemical composition of rock features on the planet’s surface, scientists at MIT have proposed that [continue reading]

nov 302012
 
Evidence for Water Ice and Organic Compounds on Mercury!

  A NASA spacecraft studying Mercury has provided compelling support for the long-held hypothesis the planet harbors abundant water ice and other frozen volatiles within its permanently shadowed polar craters. Mercury’s North Polar Region Acquired By The Arecibo Observatory. Image Credit: National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center, Arecibo Observatory  The new information comes from NASA’s MErcury [continue reading]

sep 182012
 
Characterizing the Surface Composition of Mercury

NASA’s MESSENGER (MErcury Surface, Space Environment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) spacecraft, which has been orbiting Mercury since March 2011, has been revealing new information about the surface chemistry and geologic history of the innermost planet in the Solar System. Mercury, as taken from the spacecraft MESSENGER. The spacecraft captured nearly 100,000 images as it orbited the planet. [continue reading]

mei 232012
 
Waves at the Boundary of Mercury's Magnetosphere

  MESSENGER scientists have concluded that waves driven by the Kelvin-Helmholtz (KH) instability play a key role in driving Mercury’s magnetosphere. In a paper published recently in the Journal of Geophysical Research, the team reports on frequent detections of such waves at the outer edge of the innermost planet’s magnetosphere. Mercury The paper was selected [continue reading]

mrt 272012
 
Space Observations of Mercury Transits Yield Precise Solar Radius

A group of scientists from Hawaii, Brazil and California has measured the diameter of the Sun with unprecedented accuracy by using a spacecraft to time the transits of the planet Mercury across the face of the Sun in 2003 and 2006.   Mercury’s path across the solar disk as seen from SOHO on November 8, 2006. [continue reading]

mrt 222012
 
MESSENGER Provides New Look at Mercury's Landscape, Metallic Core, and Polar Shadows

Spacecraft concludes primary mission, looks toward second year at innermost planet click to enlarge   MESSENGER completed its one-year primary mission on March 17. Since moving into orbit about Mercury a little over one year ago, the spacecraft has captured nearly 100,000 images and returned data that have revealed new information about the planet, including [continue reading]