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elakdawalla
MESSENGER Team Releases First Global Map of Mercury

NASA’s MESSENGER mission team and cartographic experts from the U. S. Geological Survey have created a critical tool for planning the first orbital observations of the planet Mercury – a global mosaic of the planet that will help scientists pinpoint craters, faults, and other features for observation...

You can explore the map in USGS Map-a-Planet (which seems to have been redesigned a bit), or download the full resolution version at 500 m/pixel here. That page also has some interesting info on the map's precision:
QUOTE
Control Network:

There are 13 total observation sequences from all three MESSENGER flybys included in the control network.

The existing Mariner 10 base map provided a ground "truth" for the MESSENGER control network. Select MESSENGER images were tied to the Mariner 10 base at seven different ground truth locations. Using ISIS3 software, 5,301 control points (18,834 measurements) were selected in 886 MDIS narrow-angle camera (NAC) images. Highly specialized bundle block adjustment software was used to minimize image boundary mismatches.

The maximum RMS error for the global control is 3.48 pixels. The average RMS error is 0.2 pixels. Pixel density values are in I/F reflectance units. Absolute errors of the MESSENGER bundle adjustment are relative to the base map as reported to be ~25 km [Robinson 1999]. Hun Kal, a small crater defining the longitude system of Mercury, is within ~2.257 km of its predicted position of 20°W longitude.
JohnVV
cool i can update my map .
JohnVV
i did, a bit lo contrast and still needs some work
scalbers
Looks like a nice high resolution map there on the USGS site. Perhaps though the "ultimate" map would still have some color information as well as ground based radar data added. Some seams are still there as well - perhaps more of an art vs science consideration? John's version appears to have dealt with this a bit.
JohnVV
scalbers
i do a bit of air brushing to remove seams
a link to a screen shot
http://celestiamotherlode.net/catalog/imag...n_van_Vliet.jpg
http://celestiamotherlode.net/catalog/show...p?addon_id=1069

the third shot on that page is not mine
my map but a very,very old hand drawn bump map ( mariner) , that dose NOT line up with the new maps
peter59
Messenger team released yesterday a new mosaic:
http://messenger.jhuapl.edu/gallery/scienc...mp;image_id=396
I prepare desktop wallpaper (1280 x 1024) (image was reduced, sharpened and contrasted).
craigmcg
Google Mercury coming soon?
nprev
VERY nice desktop, Peter, just put it up! Thank you!
peter59
3 new mosaics released.
http://messenger.jhuapl.edu/
Wow !
ZLD
I've always been mystified at how similar Mercury looks to our own moon. Out of curiosity, have any papers ever discussed the possibility of Mercury being a former moon of Venus, or would that be an impossibility in some way?
ngunn
Mercury and our Moon are very different on the inside. Mercury has a much higher density, in fact it's denser than Venus despite being much smaller.
ZLD
Mercury is almost as dense as the Earth, despite being much smaller as well, yes. I just thought it was odd that I had never read anywhere about the possibility of Mercury being a former moon of Venus, a result of a giant impact similar to Earth, even from crackpot journalists.
stevesliva
QUOTE (ZLD @ Feb 9 2011, 03:51 PM) *
Mercury is almost as dense as the Earth, despite being much smaller as well, yes. I just thought it was odd that I had never read anywhere about the possibility of Mercury being a former moon of Venus, a result of a giant impact similar to Earth, even from crackpot journalists.


I'm going to speculate that by the time we knew what Mercury looked like, astronomers had certain ideas about how the planets formed and ended up in their orbits. At least enough to state with certainty that Velikovsky was full of crap.
schaffman
QUOTE (ZLD @ Feb 9 2011, 02:20 PM) *
I've always been mystified at how similar Mercury looks to our own moon. Out of curiosity, have any papers ever discussed the possibility of Mercury being a former moon of Venus, or would that be an impossibility in some way?


The answer to the first part of your question is yes: Van Flandern, T.C.; Harrington, R.S. (1976) A Dynamical Investigation of the Conjecture that Mercury Is an Escaped Satellite of Venus. Icarus, 28(435). The tentative answer to the second part is no: the authors concluded that the hypothesis is viable because it cannot be discounted based on Mercury's current orbital dynamics.

Tom
ZLD
Thanks Tom, I really appreciate that. I scoured the net for probably 2 hours straight last night, baffled that I was coming up empty handed.
Gsnorgathon
Small, rocky, no atmosphere - why would you expect them to be substantially different in appearance? On a similar note, what about Vesta? Excluding features resulting from the impact that created a structure nearly as big in diameter as Vesta itself, would you expect it to look much different?
ZLD
Maybe mystified was a poor word choice; maybe interesting would be better. There are few, really large rocky bodies to compare and all of them have somewhat unique characteristics. As for Vesta, looking at Hubble images, I'm not at all sure what it would look like up close, but possibly somewhat similar.
scalbers
Greetings,

Here is an updated version of my global map with several improvements, including the addition of ugordan's flyby 1 outbound mosiac.

Click to view attachment

Full size is here:

http://laps.noaa.gov/albers/sos/sos.html#MERCURY

That's the latest,

Steve
CAP-Team
Great work! Can we expect more updates in the future?
machi
Excellent!
New Hermean texture for Orbiter simulator. smile.gif
scalbers
QUOTE (CAP-Team @ Aug 21 2011, 11:41 AM) *
Great work! Can we expect more updates in the future?

Thanks - and yes indeed - here is the latest with more south polar coverage (from orbital data) and improved image navigation:

Click to view attachment

Steve
JohnVV
Am i seeing things or is there an anaglyph at -60 S and - 60 w
Click to view attachment
scalbers
Good eye John - would be nice to have a 3-D map though wink.gif

My latest version (linked in signature below) should have fewer of this type of artifact. It is also now 8K in size so finer details can be seen.
Phil Stooke
Not to leave the north pole out... this is a mosaic showing the region not yet seen in published images. The outer edge is 45 north. It takes a while to fill in the north because the images cover a lot less ground.

Phil

Click to view attachment
elakdawalla
Phil, your mosaic may contain the answer to a question I was just asking myself this morning...have any images yet been released to the PDS that include the flow and scour features identified in Head et al.'s paper about the north polar lava flows?

Here's the diagram from their paper. It was released at very low resolution, and I asked if there were plans to release it at higher resolution, and they said not until a paper yet to be submitted to (I think) Icarus was published.

http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA14848

--Emily
Phil Stooke
If you look closely you will see that area at about the 2:00 position, out near the edge of my map.

I think the images from that paper are not yet released, but the feature was seen with low resolution and higher sun during one of the flybys.

Phil

Phil Stooke
If you go to the MESSENGER Quickmap:

http://messenger-act.actgate.com/msgr_publ...t_quickmap.html

... and zoom in on 59 north, 110 east (NW of Caloris), you can see the area.

Phil

elakdawalla
Huh, so you can. Thanks.
Phil Stooke
The latest MESSENGER picture of the day is a global (or almost so) mosaic, very nice. I expect it to be incorporated into Quickmap eventually, so it can be zoomed into more than the current release allows.

Phil

http://messenger.jhuapl.edu/gallery/scienc...mp;image_id=681
Phil Stooke
This is the north polar region (out to about 45 degrees) from that mosaic.

Phil

Click to view attachment
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