NASA's Messenger spacecraft has released its first shots of Mercury -- the first ever taken by a craft in orbit around the innermost planet in our solar system.
The high-res glimpse of the myriad dusty craters on the distant planet is the first tantalizing offering from Messenger, which has sailed into orbit high above the planet’s south pole and reveals Mercury's previously unseen surfaces.
“The entire Messenger team is thrilled that spacecraft and instrument checkout has been proceeding according to plan,” said Sean Solomon, Messenger's principal investigator from the Carnegie Institution of Washington.
“The first images from orbit and the first measurements from Messenger’s other payload instruments are only the opening trickle of the flood of new information that we can expect over the coming year. The orbital exploration of the Solar System’s innermost planet has beg
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