July 03, 2014
Image Mission Elapsed Time (MET):
46686728, 46686748, 46686732
6612580, 6612585, 6612581
Wide Angle Camera (WAC) of the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
9, 7, 6 (996, 748, 433 nanometers) in red, green, and blue
The crater with a possible vent on its floor is about 20 km (12.4 miles) in diameter.
This image, located north of Rachmaninoff
, features a possible volcanic vent
to the east and an expanse of terrain that appears blue in this color view to the west. The depression's orange-yellow color and irregular shape are similar to other possible volcanic vents on Mercury. To the west of the large vent is a crater with an orange, irregularly shaped depression on its floor that may also be a vent. Vents on Mercury are indicative of explosive volcanism that was prevalent in Mercury's past.
This image was acquired as a high-resolution targeted color observation. Targeted color observations are images of a small area on Mercury's surface at resolutions higher than the 1-kilometer/pixel 8-color base map. During MESSENGER's one-year primary mission, hundreds of targeted color observations were obtained. During MESSENGER's extended mission, high-resolution targeted color observations are more rare, as the 3-color base map covered Mercury's northern hemisphere with the highest-resolution color images that are possible.
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.