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QUOTE (ZLD @ Mar 31 2011, 06:45 AM) *
I've actually been wondering, are the filters on the WAC as narrow as the graph below portrays? If so, how close to 'natural' is actually possible for the images?

Because Mercury's visible spectrum is pretty bland, I expect that using images from these narrowband filters to determine true color shouldn't be much harder than it would be for broadband filters.

@ Phil: There's a lot going on in that image. Is that an ancient lava 'riverbed'? Also, what's with the linear streaking in that vicinity.

Oh, this is gonna be a fun mission!!!! smile.gif
QUOTE (nprev @ Mar 31 2011, 10:02 PM) *
Also, what's with the linear streaking in that vicinity.

There would appear to be a lot of secondary impacts. I should look it up in Google Mercury and see if that makes sense...
Check the Wikipedia front page (April 1st).
Nice tribute in the news section.
have I said how much I love April Fool's Day.
Phil Stooke
"Is that an ancient lava 'riverbed'?"

No! It's a secondary crater chain - look at the so-called Rima Stadius I on the Moon for a comparison (it's not called that any more) - just NE of Copernicus.

Phil Stooke
More pictures up...


new and unexpected images from MESSENGER arrived today !;image_id=448

Dang, I still can't access jhuapl and a number of other U.S. sites from here in Taiwan. Does anyone else have a similar problem? The Cassini site is also inaccessible to me most of the time recently. I complained to my ISP and they actually blamed it on the Japan earthquake - but tracert indicates the problem is somewhere in the U.S. I thought the Internet was designed to be robust in the face of point blockages whatever the cause. Anyway I hope there will be plenty of secondary renderings springing up on this thread and elsewhere, before the "oohs" and "aahs" drive me nuts! Thanks Hugh, for your offering in 93 - spectacular.
You can always try a proxy. Sometimes intermediate DNS caching screws you. For awhile I couldn't access my college's domain from my employer's network. Sending a few emails went nowhere on that one, too.
QUOTE (zeBeamer @ Apr 1 2011, 12:57 PM) *
new and unexpected images from MESSENGER arrived today !;image_id=448

laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif ...Apr 1 is ALWAYS an entertaining day on Earth!
Ron Hobbs
QUOTE (zeBeamer @ Apr 1 2011, 01:57 PM) *
new and unexpected images from MESSENGER arrived today !

This may be an odd question. Maybe I've misunderstood the science here. But is MESSENGER expected to markedly improved the ephemerides of Mercury and other solar system bodies?

Something I've been interested in (very casually! not a scientist!) is the accuracy of our knowledge of the planet's positions, and how folks use them to make statements about orbital stability and solar system masses and stuff like that. (eg. this PDF)

Is this supposed to be no improvement, a minor improvement, or a major improvement? Are there any specific results expected or hoped for?
Phil Stooke
Ranging and Doppler might make some improvements to the orbit data, and the rotation axis orientation, though maybe not much improvement over what radar has already given us. Other bodies? - I can't see that. The questions you are interested in are probably addressed most thoroughly with radar, at least out to Saturn's orbit. Goldstone and Arecibo routinely do radar ranging and doppler for solar system targets.


(PS - new pics up again!)
In the latest release they show a three image set that is said to help "test their ability to mosaic" but they didn't do it for the release.
Guess it's up to us then wink.gif smile.gif

Click to view attachment
Oddly fascinating that, Astro0, yes? wink.gif
I wish we had more images to play work with. It's going to be hard to wait for the PDS release a few months from now.
Maybe if we wish really hard and click our heals together three times and say:

Click to view attachment There's no place like Mercury. There's no place like Mercury. There's no place like Mercury! smile.gif
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