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Hidden Territory On Mercury Revealed

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posted on Nov, 3 2009 @ 05:42 PM

Nov. 3, 2009: The MESSENGER spacecraft's third flyby of the planet Mercury has given scientists, for the first time, an almost complete view of the planet's surface and revealed some dramatic changes in Mercury's comet-like tail.

"The new images remind us that Mercury continues to hold surprises," says Sean Solomon, principal investigator for the mission and director of the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism at the Carnegie Institution of Washington.

And what sort of surprises? Well, something I find particularly interesting is the variance in Mercury's sodium exosphere "tail" between the first and second flyby:

According to NASA, approximately 98% of Mercury's surface has now been surveyed and photographed, and many new images are now available for us to pour over and test our brains for anomaly recongnition.

Future flybys will focus on the poles of Mercury, as when Messenger goes into orbit.

The observations also show that calcium and magnesium in the exosphere exhibit different seasonal changes than sodium--a difference that researchers do not yet fully understand. After MESSENGER enters Mercury orbit in 2011, it can make a continuous study of seasonal changes in all exospheric constituents. That will provide key information on the relative importance of the processes that generate, sustain, and modify Mercury's atmosphere.
. Amazing. More info about the calcium/magnesium emissions HERE.

posted on Nov, 3 2009 @ 06:01 PM
Yes variations in the planets makeup due to seasonal changes (I.E. path of orbit) are common. The polar caps of mars are a great example of seasonal changes outside of earth. And they have just recently started to vanish all together during the summer months. (maybe the beings there are causing global warming on mars as well. J/K) I cant wait to see some finds either genuine head spinners or just natural anomaly's on the surface of Mercury as people pour over the images.

As a side note I just became a new member I have been a daily viewer for a little more than a year now. But I always felt a little scared to be a member of a site that pushes for the truth when there are those who will do anything to silence the truth. So most of my posts and reply's will not deal with current politics. But I know myself and I cant keep my hand out of the cookie jar even if it means my hand will get slapped. This site is addicting. JcOg323

[edit on 3-11-2009 by JcOg323]

posted on Nov, 3 2009 @ 06:19 PM
reply to post by argentus

I think you should have titled this, NASA discovers Mercury's cometary tail. I guess this should be expected since Mercury has almost no magnetic field but yet it is new to me.

Venus also has a comet tail; Source-New Scientist

Venus sports a giant, ion-packed tail that stretches almost far enough to tickle the Earth when the two planets are in line with the Sun...."I didn't expect to find it," says team member Marcia Neugebauer of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. "It's a really strong signal, and there's no doubt it's real."

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