Share “Now for something completely different”

Alternate Crop

NewsOK | BLOGS

Now for something completely different

John Clanton Modified: April 18, 2013 at 12:31 pm •  Published: March 30, 2011
This image provided by NASA was photographed by the spacecraft Messenger, the first ever images made from a spacecraft while in orbit around the planet. It shows Mercury's horizon as the spacecraft was moving northward along the first orbit during which MDIS was turned on. On March 17, 2011 Messenger became the first spacecraft to orbit the planet Mercury. (AP Photo/NASA) ORG XMIT: NY118
This image provided by NASA was photographed by the spacecraft Messenger, the first ever images made from a spacecraft while in orbit around the planet. It shows Mercury's horizon as the spacecraft was moving northward along the first orbit during which MDIS was turned on. On March 17, 2011 Messenger became the first spacecraft to orbit the planet Mercury. (AP Photo/NASA) ORG XMIT: NY118

Scanning through Merlin this afternoon looking for interesting pictures, what caught my eye were images from NASA of the planet Mercury. The picture above was taken by the spacecraft Messenger and is the first image ever made from a spacecraft while in orbit around Mercury.

The photograph below, taken in 2008, shows the eastern part of Mercury, the smallest and closest planet in our solar system. The colors in this picture are different than what would be seen with the naked eye, but show information about the different rock types and subtle color variations on the oddball planet. The bright yellow part is the Caloris impact basin, which is the site of one of the biggest in the solar system. For the first time, Earth has a regular orbiting eye-in-the-sky spying on the solar system’s smallest and strangest planet, Mercury. NASA’s spacecraft called Messenger successfully veered into a pinpoint orbit Thursday night after a 6 1/2-year trip and 4.9 billion miles and tricky maneuvering to fend off the gravitational pull of the sun. It is the fifth planet in our solar system that NASA has orbited, in addition to the Earth and the moon.

This image released by NASA shows an enhanced photo image of Mercury from its Messenger probeís 2008 flyby of the planet. NASA says it was a taste of pictures likely to come after March 17, 2011, when the probe enters Mercuryís orbit. This photo shows the eastern part of the smallest and closest planet in our solar system. The colors in this picture are different than what would be seen with the naked eye, but show information about the different rock types and subtle color variations on the oddball planet. The bright yellow part is the Caloris impact basin, which is the site of one of the biggest in the solar system. For the first time, Earth has a regular orbiting eye-in-the-sky spying on the solar system's smallest and strangest planet, Mercury. NASA's spacecraft called Messenger successfully veered into a pinpoint orbit Thursday night after a 6 1/2-year trip and 4.9 billion miles and tricky maneuvering to fend off the gravitational pull of the sun. It is the fifth planet in our solar system that NASA has orbited, in addition to the Earth and the moon. (AP Photo/NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Arizona State University/Carnegie Institution of Washington) ORG XMIT: WX105
This image released by NASA shows an enhanced photo image of Mercury from its Messenger probeís 2008 flyby of the planet. NASA says it was a taste of pictures likely to come after March 17, 2011, when the probe enters Mercuryís orbit. This photo shows the eastern part of the smallest and closest planet in our solar system. The colors in this picture are different than what would be seen with the naked eye, but show information about the different rock types and subtle color variations on the oddball planet. The bright yellow part is the Caloris impact basin, which is the site of one of the biggest in the solar system. For the first time, Earth has a regular orbiting eye-in-the-sky spying on the solar system's smallest and strangest planet, Mercury. NASA's spacecraft called Messenger successfully veered into a pinpoint orbit Thursday night after a 6 1/2-year trip and 4.9 billion miles and tricky maneuvering to fend off the gravitational pull of the sun. It is the fifth planet in our solar system that NASA has orbited, in addition to the Earth and the moon. (AP Photo/NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Arizona State University/Carnegie Institution of Washington) ORG XMIT: WX105

-John Clanton