January 24, 2015
Image Mission Elapsed Time (MET):
Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) of the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
This crater is approximately 19.5 km (12.1 miles) in diameter
On Mercury, craters larger than approximately 10-12 km display a complex morphology
, with slump terraces and central peaks, as compared to smaller bowl-shaped craters. At this complex crater, nearly 20 km in diameter, boulders created by the impact event can be seen outside the southwest rim and within the crater interior. The largest boulder observed here is around 180 m (590 feet) across! For comparison with humans for scale, check out the lunar House Rock
at the Apollo 16 site, which is (only) 24 meters across.
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. In the mission's more than three years of orbital operations, MESSENGER has acquired over 250,000 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.