August 23, 2013
Image Mission Elapsed Time (MET):
Wide Angle Camera (WAC) of the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
7 (748 nanometers)
The central vent is approximately 36 km (22 mi.) across
This beautiful view of the volcanic vents
located to the north of the Rachmaninoff
basin gives a new perspective on the area. At center, a vent is located within the bright pyroclastic
deposit that is thought to have erupted front he vent. An older vent is also seen toward the bottom right as an irregularly shaped depression, though it has no clear surrounding deposit. The oblique angle of the image allows a view of the eastern walls of these features.
The MESSENGER spacecraft is the first ever to orbit the planet Mercury, and the spacecraft's seven scientific instruments and radio science investigation
are unraveling the history and evolution of the Solar System's innermost planet. During the first two years of orbital operations, MESSENGER acquired over 150,000 images and extensive other data sets. MESSENGER is capable of continuing orbital operations until early 2015.
Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
For information regarding the use of MESSENGER images, see the image use policy.