The Bruce Murray Space Image Library
Arecibo's bright pixels fall in permanently shadowed craters
Filed under pretty pictures, explaining science, radar imaging, Mercury, MESSENGER, radio telescopes, geology
The highest-resolution radar image of Mercury's north polar region made from the Arecibo Observatory (Harmon et al., Icarus, 211, 37-50, 2011) is shown in yellow on a mosaic of MESSENGER orbital images. Radar-bright features in the Arecibo image all lie in areas mapped as in shadow in MESSENGER images to date, consistent with the proposal that radar-bright materials contain water ice.
NASA / JHUAPL / CIW
This image is shown in a polar stereographic projection with every 5° of latitude and 30° of longitude indicated and with 0° longitude at the bottom. On Mercury, 5° of latitude is approximately 213 km.
Original image data dated on or about March 22, 2012
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