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Hi Res JPG 360 KB

A Rupes on Mercury

Artist¹s impression of a rupes (cliff) on Mercury. Long, steep cliffs that extend for hundreds of kilometers are seen on Mercury¹s surface in both Mariner 10 and MESSENGER images. These giant cliffs are believed to have formed when Mercury¹s interior cooled and the entire planet shrank slightly as a result.

Credit: Michael Carroll/Alien Volcanoes by Lopes and Carroll, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008.


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