The image above shows a stereographic projection of a mosaic centered on Mercury's north pole. This mosaic is made up of MDIS images acquired during its monochrome, color, monochrome stereo, high-incidence, albedo, three-color, and northern polar campaigns. Above 85 degrees north, the approximate location of the center of Prokofiev crater, many images were averaged together in order to obtain a mostly sunlit mosaic. Permanently shadowed craters at Mercury's poles are host to radar-bright deposits.
Instrument: Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) and Wide Angle Camera (WAC) of the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
Resolution: 1.0 km/pixel
Scale: Prokofiev crater is approximately 110 km (68 mi.) in diameter.
Map Projection: polar stereographic
Center Latitude: 90°
Top Center Longitude: 180° E
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. Visit the Why Mercury? section of this website to learn more about the key science questions that the MESSENGER mission is addressing. During the one-year primary mission, MDIS acquired 88,746 images and extensive other data sets. MESSENGER is now in a year-long extended mission, during which plans call for the acquisition of more than 80,000 additional images to support MESSENGER's science goals.
These images are from MESSENGER, a NASA Discovery mission to conduct the first orbital study of the innermost planet, Mercury. For information regarding the use of images, see the MESSENGER image use policy.