Monday, April 4, 2011

Mercury and More Mercury from MESSENGER

Phil Plait published (with his usual fine analysis) the first pic of Mercury from a now-orbiting MESSENGER spacecraft at his Bad Astronomy weblog here, and another updated one with more pics, here.

Here's a false color pic from the second batch, showing the great mineral diversity on the planet. That's no Moon, that's Mercury!

Not to be outdone, on April 3 (not April 1), Universe Today published a completely unexpected incredibly coincidental pic of the ancient Mariner 10 space probe paying a visit to the planet as well:

And ... of course that's photoshopped and was in fact, an April Fool from NASA itself. Glad to see they have a sense of humor.

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