Mercury Update - New findings

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rlb2

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<p><span style="font-family:Verdana">WASHINGTON</span><span style="font-family:Verdana"> -- NASA will host a media teleconference Thursday, July 3, at </span><span style="font-family:Verdana">2 p.m. </span><span style="font-family:Verdana">EDT</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">, to discuss analysis of data from the Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft's flyby of Mercury earlier this year. <br /><br />The spacecraft is the first designed to orbit the planet closest to the sun. It flew past Mercury on </span><span style="font-family:Verdana">Jan. 14, 2008</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">, and made the first up-close measurements since Mariner 10's final flyby in 1975. <br /><br />Analyses of the data show volcanoes were involved in the formation of plains. The data also suggest the planet's magnetic field is actively produced in its core. In addition, the mission has provided the first look at the chemical composition of Mercury's surface. The results will be reported in a series of 11 papers published July 4 in a special section of Science magazine</span></p><span style="font-family:Verdana"><span style="font-family:Verdana"><font color="#800080">http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2008/jul/HQ_M08128_MESSENGER_update.html</font></span></span> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> Ron Bennett </div>
 
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MeteorWayne

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Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>WASHINGTON -- NASA will host a media teleconference Thursday, July 3, at 2 p.m. EDT, to discuss analysis of data from the Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft's flyby of Mercury earlier this year. The spacecraft is the first designed to orbit the planet closest to the sun. It flew past Mercury on Jan. 14, 2008, and made the first up-close measurements since Mariner 10's final flyby in 1975. Analyses of the data show volcanoes were involved in the formation of plains. The data also suggest the planet's magnetic field is actively produced in its core. In addition, the mission has provided the first look at the chemical composition of Mercury's surface. The results will be reported in a series of 11 papers published July 4 in a special section of Science magazinehttp://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2008/jul/HQ_M08128_MESSENGER_update.html <br />Posted by rlb2</DIV><br /><br />Thanx for the heads up!! <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
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rlb2

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<span style="font-family:Verdana"><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>Thanx for the heads up!! <br />Posted by MeteorWayne</DIV></span> <p><span style="font-family:Verdana">Our first rock will finally be extensively studied, can&rsquo;t wait to hear what they have found so far.</span><br /></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> Ron Bennett </div>
 
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holmec

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'> Our first rock will finally be extensively studied, can&rsquo;t wait to hear what they have found so far. <br /> Posted by rlb2</DIV></p><p>Sounds good. I hope were in for some nice surprises. </p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p><font color="#0000ff"><em>"SCE to AUX" - John Aaron, curiosity pays off</em></font></p> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">Thanx for the heads up!! <br /> Posted by MeteorWayne</font></DIV></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Yes absolutely. Looks very interesting. The differing cratering density across the Caloris Basin need some explaining, heavily cratered east, fewer craters west. Also why does the southern hemisphere appear to be rougher & less evolved than the northern (a little like Mars & our Moon in this respect)?&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Why is the core still molten? Sulphur enriched? Does the density profile show a Sulphur enriched core or is it totally heavy metal (no not Iron Maiden or Black Sabbath)?&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'> <font color="#ff0000">Our first rock will finally be extensively studied, can&rsquo;t wait to hear what they have found so far. <br /> Posted by rlb2</font></DIV></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Yes indeed & not before time either, The First Rock from the Sun is slowly giving up secrets.&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Would still like a lander or rover though.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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MeteorWayne

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<p>sounds like there will be some Scribblenotes tomorrow!</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
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rlb2

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<p><span style="font-family:Verdana"><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>Yes absolutely. Looks very interesting. The differing cratering density across the </span><span style="font-family:Verdana">Caloris</span><span style="font-family:Verdana"> </span><span style="font-family:Verdana">Basin</span><span style="font-family:Verdana"> need some explaining, heavily cratered east, fewer craters west. Andrew Brown.&nbsp; <br />Posted by 3488</DIV></span></p><p><span style="font-family:Verdana">rlb2-Here is an interesting&nbsp;tidbit&nbsp;to watch for at that briefing.</span></p><span style="font-family:Verdana"><font color="#993300"><span style="color:#993300;font-family:Verdana"><span style="color:#993300;font-family:Verdana">Despite the generally extremely high temperature of its surface, observations strongly suggest that </span><span style="font-family:Verdana"><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">ice</span><span style="color:#993300"> exists on Mercury. The floors of some deep craters near the poles are never exposed to direct sunlight, and temperatures there remain far lower than the global average. Water ice strongly reflects </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">radar</span><span style="color:#993300">, and observations by the 70m </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">Goldstone</span><span style="color:#993300"> telescope and the </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">VLA</span><span style="color:#993300"> in the early 1990s revealed that there are patches of very high radar </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">reflection</span><span style="color:#993300"> near the poles. While ice is not the only possible cause of these reflective regions, astronomers believe it is the most likely.</span></span> </span></font></span><span style="font-family:Verdana"><font color="#993300"><span style="color:#993300;font-family:Verdana"><p><span style="color:#993300;font-family:Verdana">The icy regions are believed to be covered to a depth of only a few meters, and contain about 10<sup>14</sup>&ndash;10<sup>15</sup>&nbsp;kg of ice. By comparison, the </span><span style="font-family:Verdana"><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">Antarctic</span><span style="color:#993300"> ice sheet on Earth has a mass of about 4&times;10<sup>18</sup>&nbsp;kg, and </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">Mars</span><span style="color:#993300">&rsquo; south polar cap contains about 10<sup>16</sup>&nbsp;kg of water. The origin of the ice on Mercury is not yet known, but the two most likely sources are from </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">outgassing</span><span style="color:#993300"> of water from the planet&rsquo;s interior or deposition by impacts of </span><span style="color:#993300;text-decoration:none;text-underline:none">comets</span><span style="color:#993300">.</span></span></p><p><span style="font-family:Verdana"><span style="color:#993300">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_%28planet%29</span></span></p></span></font></span> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> Ron Bennett </div>
 
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rlb2

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#993300">Sounds good. I hope were in for some nice surprises. <br />Posted by holmec</font></DIV></p><p><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">rlb2 -</span><span style="color:#993300;font-family:Verdana"> </span><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">I don&rsquo;t know how much this has been discussed before but I am generally warm, or in this case hot, for the idea of sending a rover there. If the Polar ice hypothesis is found true then Mercury may be a good place to set up a future colony, and to look for life? A lot of if&rsquo;s hear folks but very interesting idea. The solar radiation is up to 10 times what it is just above the Earths atmosphere in some of the un-shadowed areas. </span></p><p><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">Traveling to Mercury would be very warm transit, but you can use high efficient 10 suns solar concentrator solar cells that don&rsquo;t need to be concentrated, or thermally cooled. The solar cells could shade the craft and offset the added heat by using heat exchanger to cool the inside. One&nbsp;square meter of solar cells would equal 13 kilowatts X today&rsquo;s efficiency apx., 35 percent therefore 4.5 actual Kilowatts per&nbsp;square meter. That&rsquo;s enough to power a very robust Rover mission although you may have to dip in and out of the shaded areas&hellip;.</span></p><p><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">Another idea is to drop the solar cells outside the shaded areas high above the crater and have it beam radio waves to the&nbsp;rover&rsquo;s receiver&nbsp;at the bottom of the crater&nbsp;to charge its batteries. If this is done the rover wouldn't need any cumbersome solar arrays or a large heavy RTG's like the MSL's.&nbsp;Beamed energy&nbsp;is what I proposed for Mars when I first started at this message board in the 90's and is similar to what they do in some home products today...&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><span style="color:#993300;font-family:Verdana"> </span></p><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">A Rover sent to the ice covered <span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">Polar Regions</span><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">, if ice is confirmed,&nbsp;may be an excellent idea after all. </span>Mercury&nbsp;does have an energetic magnetic field; however, the polar region may have a problem&nbsp;deflecting it. <span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana"><span style="color:black;font-family:Verdana">For human&rsquo;s&nbsp;a lot more solar&nbsp;radiation in the form of fast&nbsp;and slow moving neutrons to worry about, stuff that&nbsp;require heavy&nbsp;shielding.</span></span></span> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> Ron Bennett </div>
 
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3488

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<p><strong><font size="2" color="#000000">Some very interesting stuff released today from the MESSENGER teleconference.</font></strong></p><p><strong><font size="2" color="#000080">Faults, faults & faults!!!!</font></strong><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/4/2/04ef6631-c14b-4714-825f-fc8ed5184dab.Medium.jpg" alt="" /> </p><p><strong><font size="2" color="#000000">Appears that crustal movement continued for some time after the intercrater plains formed. This was already apparent, from Mariner 10 & the initial examination of the MESSENGER images, but this suggests that major faulting continued long after major Geological (Hermeological being Mercury) activity was initially thought to have ceased.&nbsp; </font></strong></p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000000">Top White arrows appear to show an older fault predating many of the lava plains, & the bottom set of thicker white arrows shows a much larger & younger fault post dating the lava plains. The clack arrow is pointing at a crater formed after the first fault.</font></strong></font></p><p><font color="#000080"><strong><font size="2">Multispectral view of the Caloris Basin & environs.</font></strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/3/5/83aff33e-7252-426d-8521-06d02ea319ea.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000000">The Caloris Basin in MDIS multispectral. This appears to suggest that volcanic activity took place here, long after it was thought initially. Also the western half appears younger than the eastern half (the side seen by Mariner 10 in high resolution). Earlier images already released shows this & the high resolution images from Mariner 10 of the eastern rim clearly show many more smaller craters & greater degredation than on the MESSENGER high resolution images of the western half.</font></strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>I will be back, once I've uploaded more.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><font size="2" color="#000080"><strong>Three panels showing how lobate scarps deform craters.</strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/9/9/999c66d5-7117-41c6-b9a3-1e8f9d595822.Medium.jpg" alt="" /></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Three panels showing how lobate scarps deform pre-existing craters & how rubble has partially covered the crater floors.&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000080"><strong>This has to be my favourite, the first identified Shield Volcano on Mercury. </strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/8/14/d855d0d6-5c18-42fc-bec6-2d0de4db594e.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p><p><font color="#000000"><strong><font size="2">The heart shaped 25 KM wide caldera, on top of a 95 KM wide Shield Volcano, just inside the western edge of the floor of the Caloris Basin, looks pretty interesting. No info as yet as to the height of the volcano or the depth of the summit caldera. The bright area around the caldera appears to be debris from eruptions. For a volcano head, this is a fantastic find, my favourite yet from MESSENGER. </font></strong></font> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/5/0/05febd03-740a-4c3e-907d-3aceb7687205.Medium.gif" alt="" /><br /> </p><p><font color="#000080"><strong><font size="2">&nbsp;Map of above volcano & surrounding area.</font></strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/0/6/5058f34d-306f-48b0-96f2-b4b7127b7fce.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p><p><strong><font size="2" color="#000000">I will be back when I've uploaded more.</font></strong></p><p><strong><font size="2" color="#000000">Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</font></strong></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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rlb2

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>Three panels showing how lobate scarps deform craters. Three panels showing how lobate scarps deform pre-existing craters & how rubble has partially covered the crater floors.&nbsp;This has to be my favourite, the first identified Shield Volcano on Mercury. &nbsp;The heart shaped 25 KM wide caldera looks pretty interesting. No info as yet as to the height of the volcano or the depth of the summit caldera. For a volcano head, this is a fantastic find, my favourite yet from MESSENGER. I will be back when I've uploaded more.Andrew Brown.&nbsp; <br />Posted by 3488</DIV></p><p>Here is some of the briefing I quickly took down. Note this isn't per batum.</p><p><span style="font-family:Verdana">More water group ions in the atmosphere than previously thought, remember the atmosphere is really tenuous compared to earths.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">&nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="font-family:Verdana">One of three hypotheses talked about at the briefing for this is that some of the water ion&rsquo;s came from ice deposits in the polar craters; however, water ice hasn&rsquo;t been verified in those craters.</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">&nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="font-family:Verdana">Magnetosphere examined, a lot of plasma from the suns solar wind bombarding around the polar region similar to earths but earth&rsquo;s atmosphere stops it from striking the planet thus <span style="color:black">Aurora Borealis</span> where Mercury&rsquo;s tenuous atmosphere doesn&rsquo;t. <span>&nbsp;</span>A lot of volcanism causing the terrain we see on mercury some <span>&nbsp;</span>may be new, Messenger&nbsp;may verify this when Messenger reaches orbit. <span>&nbsp;</span></span><span style="font-family:Verdana">&nbsp;</span> </p><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family:Verdana">Next flyby will make map of planet 95 percent complete.</span></p><span style="font-family:Verdana"><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal"><br /><img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/1/8/f17e3a7b-b7aa-4f5c-88d1-758ed9149363.Medium.jpg" alt="" width="293" height="223" /></p><p class="wwwbodytxtsmall">Credit: University of Colorado</p><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal"><img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/5/3/15f09dd3-36ad-4074-9359-1b0228835540.Medium.jpg" alt="" width="289" height="237" />&nbsp;</p><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal">Credit: University of Michigan</p><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal">See - <font color="#003399">MeteorWayne</font>&nbsp;link below for more details.</p><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal">Here is something just came out after the briefing.</p><p style="margin-top:0in;margin-left:0in;margin-right:0in" class="MsoNormal">http://www.spaceref.com/news/viewpr.html?pid=25859</p><p><span style="font-family:Verdana">Low-iron volcanic plains filling the Caloris impact basin make a large pale-orange patch (C) in this false-<span class="klink"><span style="text-decoration:none;text-underline:none"><span style="color:blue!important">color </span><span style="color:blue!important">image</span></span></span> of Mercury from MESSENGER. White arrows mark locations of young smooth plains whose composition appears related to the Caloris plains. Around the edge of Caloris and elsewhere lie small volcanic centers thought to form by explosive eruptions (black arrows). The widespread dark blue areas are older rocks that may be rich in the mineral ilmenite.</span></p><p><br /><img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/7/14/c721cc78-d0a0-4121-8e48-23a7a75a211b.Medium.jpg" alt="" width="233" height="260" />&nbsp;</p><span style="font-family:Verdana">Here is a very good assessment of the briefing, these&nbsp;people are quick. What&rsquo;s missing is the talk about the water ions???</span> <p>http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/080703-mercury-messenger.html</p></span> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> Ron Bennett </div>
 
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MeteorWayne

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<p>&nbsp;</p><p>Mercury's core is shrinking as it cools creating the dynamo that powers the magnetic field. This is very similar to earth,</p><p>In other words, the magnetic field is being dynamically generated, it is not remnant magnetism locked into place like it is on Mars.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Scibblenotes will take a while to do....images associated are here:</p><p>http://messenger.jhuapl.edu/news_room/multi04.html</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">Mercury's core is shrinking as it cools creating the dynamo that powers the magnetic field. This is very similar to earth,In other words, the magnetic field is being dynamically generated, it is not remnant magnetism locked into place like it is on Mars.&nbsp;Scibblenotes will take a while to do....images associated are here:http://messenger.jhuapl.edu/news_room/multi04.html <br /> Posted by MeteorWayne</font></DIV><font color="#ff0000"> </font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Thank you very much Wayne, looking forward to your excellent as always scribblenotes, as evidenced by the Mars Phoenix Lander updates.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Interesting to see (though I did suspect this already a while back, but no direct proof till now), that the core of Mercury is definataly molten & is obviously convecting & / or spinning. I think on the MESSENGER thread a short while ago, it was mentioned that tracking of MESSENGER suggested a double layered core inside Mercury, like the Earth & the Jupiter moon Ganymede (also suspected with Venus & the Jupiter moon Io).</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>The inner core likely to be solid iron, the outer one an iron sulphide molten convecting layer. Was there any update on this today?</strong></font> </p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000000">Below is my crap attempt at cropping & enlargening the summit caldera on the summit of the first identified shield volcano on Mercury.</font></strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000080">25 KM wide summit caldera on Mercury. </font></strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/0/11/c0a682ae-67e0-4a05-ab96-33dd3b964233.Medium.jpg" alt="" /></p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000080"><br />Quite like this nine WAC image large mosaic of Mercury. </font></strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/5/9/257eaa69-5ffa-4411-a94f-c240156ca682.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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rlb2

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<span style="font-family:Verdana">Very interesting stuff&nbsp;Andrew, I missed out on some of that back when Messenger initially flew-by.&nbsp;Next flyby is </span><span style="font-family:Verdana">Oct 6th 2008</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">. I'm very interested in the&nbsp;</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">North Polar Region</span><span style="font-family:Verdana">; it will turn into a major topic if ice is confirmed inside those craters and the volcanoes are more recent. This will be interesting reading -&nbsp;11 papers detailed in the July 4 issue of the journal <em><span style="font-style:normal;font-family:Verdana">Science. You and&nbsp;MeteorWayne&nbsp;</span></em><span>and several others people here are keeping everyone informed on major new ongoing solar system science, it is appreciated. </span><em><span style="font-family:Verdana"></span></em></span><br /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> Ron Bennett </div>
 
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3488

Guest
<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">Very interesting stuff&nbsp;Andrew, I missed out on some of that back when Messenger initially flew-by.&nbsp;Next flyby is Oct 6th 2008. I'm very interested in the&nbsp;North Polar Region; it will turn into a major topic if ice is confirmed inside those craters and the volcanoes are more recent. This will be interesting reading -&nbsp;11 papers detailed in the July 4 issue of the journal Science. You and&nbsp;MeteorWayne&nbsp;and several others people here are keeping everyone informed on major new ongoing solar system science, it is appreciated. <br /> Posted by rlb2</font></DIV></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Thank you very much rlb2. Can I call you something else other than just rlb2? I think we are certainly on first name terms. </strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Wayne is also insanely curious & very interested, just like me & we both take planetary exploration very seriously, as you do. </strong></font> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/13/1/9d45cb83-8de1-47f8-b107-a9347e90d17c.Medium.gif" alt="" /><br /> </p><p><font size="2"><strong>This is absolutely fascinating stuff & yes I agree completely that the North polar region of Mercury may hold some surprises yet (ussuming of course the rotational axis has not changed relatively recently). </strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Yes also the fdact that the volcanoes may be more recent. The one revealed today, does not look too beaten up by impacts, infact that caldera looks fairly 'fresh' as does the flanks of the volcano, very few craters on it, a bit like Olympus Mons on Mars in that respect. I could be wrong & it is ancient, but at the resolution seen thus far, it does not look very old. During the orbital mission we may get to see it again in higher resolution.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>The Monday 6th October 2008 encounter, will uncover most of the rest of the unseen portion (up to 97% coverage I think).&nbsp; I can't wait. This today, ongoing new stuff from Phoenix, Cassini commencing an extended mission, the MERs still operating, MRO, etc, its exciting times for planetary exploration.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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efron_24

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<p>where on&nbsp;Mercury is the vulcano.. ?</p><p>Will vulcanism have been like on IO (giant plumes of material high above the globe)</p><p>or was it slow motion thick lava layer on layer </p><p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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3488

Guest
<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">where on&nbsp;Mercury is the vulcano.. ?Will vulcanism have been like on IO (giant plumes of material high above the globe)or was it slow motion thick lava layer on layer &nbsp; <br /> Posted by efron_24</font></DIV></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Hi Chris, great to see you again.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>The volcano is situated on the south west margin of the central portion of the Caloris Basin.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>It is a shield volcano, like Kileau, Hawaii or Olympus Mons on Mars. They are made from layers, usually above magmatic hot spots rising within the mantle & burning a hole in the crust. I would doubt this volcano was like the huge fountains on Io (though Io does have shield volcanoes also, Ra Patera being one), more likely flows of lava, building one over the other, over the other, etc. See below in Hawaii.</strong></font></p><p><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/4/0/d4f283d6-1622-4def-b027-8c00b569c484.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p><p><font size="2"><strong>Aerial view, Mauna Loa Hawaii, USA. </strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/0/11/c025d9c2-0c43-45aa-ab72-abcbba00b81c.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br /><font size="2" color="#000080"><strong>&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000080"><strong>Shield Volcano in the Galapagos Islands. </strong></font><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/13/8/9daae7a3-39c3-4f4f-b8e5-2cf5effa453e.Medium.jpg" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>The newly found shield volcano on Mercury is of the same type of those above. The top image of the flows, is how it probably looks on the flanks.<br /></strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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efron_24

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>Hi Chris, great to see you again.The volcano is situated on the south west margin of the central portion of the Caloris Basin.It is a shield volcano, like Kileau, Hawaii or Olympus Mons on Mars. They are made from layers, usually above magmatic hot spots rising within the mantle & burning a hole in the crust. I would doubt this volcano was like the huge fountains on Io (though Io does have shield volcanoes also, Ra Patera being one), more likely flows of lava, building one over the other, over the other, etc. See below in Hawaii. &nbsp;Aerial view, Mauna Loa Hawaii, USA. &nbsp;Shield Volcano in the Galapagos Islands. &nbsp;The newly found shield volcano on Mercury is of the same type of those above. The top image of the flows, is how it probably looks on the flanks.Andrew Brown.&nbsp; <br />Posted by 3488</DIV></p><p>Thanks for the quick and clear answer.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">Thanks for the quick and clear answer.&nbsp;&nbsp; <br />Posted by efron_24</font></DIV></p><p><font size="2"><strong>You are more than welcome. This is a fascinating subject & suspect there are more, as the saying goes "where there's one, there are most likely others".</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>The finding of the shield in the western Caloris Basin, helps explain why the western half of the basin is less heavily cratered than the east, if there are volcanoes on the western side, but not on the east. Why this is so, I have no idea, unless it is a chance event that a magmatic hot spot developed underneath western Caloris, or that Caloris is not symetrical, but to me looks fairly circular (slightly oval, but not much)????</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>This does not disprove that Mercury had fire fountains like Io, only that so far, there is no evidence I'm aware of there being such eruptions in the remote past.<br /></strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>The finding of cinder cones would be great news, but I expect that not all of the first encounter data has been examined yet & perhaps would be a good time to re examine the Mariner 10 images & data.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Andrew Brown.</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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efron_24

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>You are more than welcome. This is a fascinating subject & suspect there are more, as the saying goes "where there's one, there are most likely others".The finding of the shield in the western Caloris Basin, helps explain why the western half of the basin is less heavily cratered than the east, if there are volcanoes on the western side, but not on the east. Why this is so, I have no idea, unless it is a chance event that a magmatic hot spot developed underneath western Caloris, or that Caloris is not symetrical, but to me looks fairly circular (slightly oval, but not much)????This does not disprove that Mercury had fire fountains like Io, only that so far, there is no evidence I'm aware of there being such eruptions in the remote past.The finding of cinder cones would be great news, but I expect that not all of the first encounter data has been examined yet & perhaps would be a good time to re examine the Mariner 10 images & data.Andrew Brown. <br />Posted by 3488</DIV></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Space.com tells us that the old spaceships only photographed half of Mercury</p><p>Messenger added 20% to this.. this means we still haven't seen about 30% of Mercury</p><p>Who knows what will be found in the darkness.<br /></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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MeteorWayne

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>&nbsp;Space.com tells us that the old spaceships only photographed half of MercuryMessenger added 20% to this.. this means we still haven't seen about 30% of MercuryWho knows what will be found in the darkness. <br />Posted by efron_24</DIV><br /><br />I think your numbers are off a bit, but not too far.</p><p>From Andrew....(was 55%, now 25% more,&nbsp;October 2008 5% more).</p><p>The older MESSENGER thread is on the front page of this forum, there's lots of raw info there.</p><p>In any case, Mariner had lower resolution that MESSENGER did on these close approaches, so there's a lot more detail now.</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">I think your numbers are off a bit, but not too far.From Andrew....(was 55%, now 25% more,&nbsp;October 2008 5% more).The older MESSENGER thread is on the front page of this forum, there's lots of raw info there.In any case, Mariner had lower resolution that MESSENGER did on these close approaches, so there's a lot more detail now. <br /> Posted by MeteorWayne<font color="#000000">[</font></font>/QUOTE]</p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000000">Hi Wayne, </font></strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000000">Hope you're having a good Indepedence Day holiday!!! </font></strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong><font color="#000000">I'm sure I did not quote those figures, I found this paragraph in the other MESSENGER update thread??? Unless I guffed up elsewhere (very likely).</font></strong></font></p><p>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font size="1" color="#ff0000">So far approx 75% of Mercury has been seen in detail (45% Mariner 10, 30% MESSENGER),<br />so already, IMO it should be possible to start drawing up a more detailed <br />Mercury geological history. Global coverage will be near enough complete, come the <br />October encounter, when we get to see the vast majority of what remains unimaged,<br />during the approach this time (Mercury will be facing the other way then).</font></DIV>.</p><p><strong><font size="2">I think this October, we get to see apporx another 22%, leaving only about 3% unimaged. Unless I'm wrong????? Which too is more than likely!!!!!!!!!!</font></strong></p><p><font size="2"><strong>It will be great to see all of the frames, but the multispectral images already released may help locate more volcanoes. Some how I think the shield revealed yesterday is definately post Caloris forming event. It looks far too 'new' & the fact the caldera still looks fairly fresh (no guarantee it's still active, I suspect it is extinct, but one never knows). I wonder if there are still some higher resolution images yet to still be released of this volcano, or if we'll have to wait till the orbital mission from March 2011? This volcano will be in the darkness of a Hermean night on both the October 2008 & September 2009 encounters.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Andrew Brown.</strong></font>&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><font size="2"><strong>A bit of number crunching on said Shield Volcano & other musings of mine, concerning Mercury.</strong></font></p><p><font size="2"><strong>Assuming the same profile as say Olympus Mons on Mars which is approx 600 KM wide & 22 KM tall (ratio of 27.27 to 1), then this Hermian shield Volcano is 3,481 metres / 11,418 feet tall, just shy of Pico del Teide on the Canary Island of Tenerife, so is quite lofty. Also this shield appears to not be heavily cratered or degraded, or at least at the resolution MESSENGER imaged it (sharp enough certainly to rule out a very ancient surface).<br /><br />The location is not a surpise, on the SW interior floor of Caloris Basin, where fractures may have caused 'hot spots' of rising magma, but what is surprising, is how young this feature appears to be in relation to much of the rest of Mercury's surface, many areas, clearly very ancient, dating back to the earliest days for sure, but this area does not. <br /><br />Also this shield appears considerably younger than even the Caloris Basin itself. It begs the question, does Mercury still have active volcanoes? I suspect the answer is no.<br /><br />Also on the larger multispectral view posted by rlb2 & MeteorWayne, thank you very much rlb2 & &nbsp;Wayne, very useful & interesting image & information, it looks like there may be other shields, at least four, maybe five&nbsp;more. I hope we get to see the NAC images of these soon, to confirm.<br /><br />Although this encounter was 'only' a maneuver to reduce MESSENGER's heliocentric velocity, to test instuments & carry out some science on half of the previously unimaged portion, MESSENGER returned results IMO, that are worthy of Primary Mission status. Cannot wait for the Monday 6th October 2008 encounter, when we get to see most of the rest unimaged portion, taking the coverage from 75% to about 97%.<br /><br />The First Rock from the Sun is slowly giving up her secrets. Let's hope at some point, we get a lander / rover onto the Hermean surface. <br /><br />Andrew Brown.</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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MeteorWayne

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<p>Just an update, finally received the special MESSENGER issue of SCIENCE.</p><p>The first article states that Mariner 10 imaged 45% of the surface during it's 3 flybys in 1974 and 1975.</p><p>MESSENGER imaged an additional 21% in the first flyby for a total imaged surface&nbsp;of 66%.</p><p>This article is by Solomon et.al.</p><p>MW</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080"><em><font color="#000000">But the Krell forgot one thing John. Monsters. Monsters from the Id.</font></em> </font></p><p><font color="#000080">I really, really, really, really miss the "first unread post" function</font><font color="#000080"> </font></p> </div>
 
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3488

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#ff0000">Just an update, finally received the special MESSENGER issue of SCIENCE.The first article states that Mariner 10 imaged 45% of the surface during it's 3 flybys in 1974 and 1975.MESSENGER imaged an additional 21% in the first flyby for a total imaged surface&nbsp;of 66%.This article is by Solomon et.al.MW <br /> Posted by MeteorWayne</font></DIV></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Thanks Wayne,</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>I see that we are 'only' upto two thirds. The initial info I had was that MESSENGER inceased the coverage to 75%. Obviously that is not so. AFAIK from October, the coverage will increase to approx 97%, unless that is now wrong (I hope not).</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>If thatr 97% figure is correct, than the pass in October will reveal more new ground than the one back in January.&nbsp;</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>One thing is that a swathe of newly imaged terrain, although seeable will be severely foreshortened. </strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Wonder why they do not make this one a day time pass. Periherm is very brief, so I would not expect reflected heat to be a huge problem for such a short time?</strong></font></p><p><font size="2" color="#000000"><strong>Andrew Brown.&nbsp;</strong></font></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><font color="#000080">"I suddenly noticed an anomaly to the left of Io, just off the rim of that world. It was extremely large with respect to the overall size of Io and crescent shaped. It seemed unbelievable that something that big had not been visible before".</font> <em><strong><font color="#000000">Linda Morabito </font></strong><font color="#800000">on discovering that the Jupiter moon Io was volcanically active. Friday 9th March 1979.</font></em></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://www.launchphotography.com/</font><br /><br /><font size="1" color="#000080">http://anthmartian.googlepages.com/thisislandearth</font></p><p><font size="1" color="#000080">http://web.me.com/meridianijournal</font></p> </div>
 
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