MESSENGER was just 184 km above Mercury's surface when it snapped this view of a hollow in Ahmad Baba crater. The hollow is located on the south-facing slope of Ahmad Baba's peak ring (north is toward the upper-right corner in this image).
This image was acquired as part of the MDIS low-altitude imaging campaign. During MESSENGER's second extended mission, the spacecraft makes a progressively closer approach to Mercury's surface than at any previous point in the mission, enabling the acquisition of high-spatial-resolution data. For spacecraft altitudes below 350 kilometers, NAC images are acquired with pixel scales ranging from 20 meters to as little as 2 meters.
Date acquired: May 12, 2014
Image Mission Elapsed Time (MET): 42186174
Image ID: 6293058
Instrument: Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) of the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
Center Latitude: 57.60°
Center Longitude: 231.5° E
Resolution: 6 meters/pixel
Scale: This image is approximately 7 km (4 miles) across
Incidence Angle: 70.8°
Emission Angle: 49.0°
Phase Angle: 80.0°
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. MESSENGER acquired over 150,000 images and extensive other data sets. MESSENGER is capable of continuing orbital operations until early 2015.
For information regarding the use of images, see the MESSENGER image use policy.