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Planet Mercury as a cratered crescent beneath a blazing sun; innermost planet; terrestrial planet; telluric planet; rocky planet - Space Art Illustration

 

Mercury

Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun making Mercury's sunward face one of the hottest solid surfaces in the Solar System.

Like Earth's moon, Mercury has no atmosphere and the topography consists of impact craters, mountains, and scarps. Most of these features probably formed several billion years ago and have changed little since. Mercury may have once been volcanic, but there is no evidence of active volcanism today.

The existence of Mercury has been known since prehistoric times, occasionally appearing as a pinkish or coppery star in the twilight sky immediately before or after sunset.

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Special thanks to James Hastings-Trew for his Mercury surface map.

Copyright Walter B. Myers. All rights reserved.

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