This figure highlights the flight path of MESSENGER during its acquisition of images used in today's flyover movie. The spacecraft flew over Mercury's north polar region, providing a bird's eye view of Mercury's crater-ridden surface. A flight path mosaic of 179 images is overlain on a less opaque mosaic of Mercury's north pole. To observe a close-up view of MESSENGER's flight path, see PIA18636.
Instrument: Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
Center Latitude: 90.0°
Map Projection: Polar stereographic projection, extending southward to 75° N
Scale: Prokofiev crater is 112 km (69.6 miles) in diameter
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.