MERCURY NOTES - MERCURY: The Planet Mercury is the closest...

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MERCURY: The Planet Mercury is the closest planet to our sun and is the smallest planet in the solar system. It is named after a roman god. It has no natural satellites and no substantial atmosphere. Facts about Planet Mercury * Diameter: 4,878km (3,032 miles) at its equator, which is about two-fifths of Earth's diameter. * Temperature: ? * Orbit: 57,910,000 km (0.38 AU) from Sun. Orbiting the Sun once every 88 days. * Average Distance: About 58 million km (36 million miles) * Time to Rotate: 58.6 days * Mass: 3.30e23 kg (5.5% of Earth's) * Moons: 0 * Period of Rotation: 58.6462 days. Orbit Mercury has a very elliptical (oval-shaped) orbit. At perihelion (at its closest point) it is about 46 million km (28.58 million miles) from the Sun, but at aphelion (at its farthest point) it is 70 million km. Mercury is about 77.3 million km (48 million miles) from Earth at its closest approach. Mercury is not easily seen from Earth due to its small angular separation from the Sun. Mercury moves around the sun faster than any other planet. Mercury travels about 48 km (30 miles) per second and it takes 88 Earth days to orbit the sun. The Earth goes around the sun once every 365 days (one year). Rotation The planet rotates once about every 59 Earth days, a rotation slower than that of any other planet except Venus. As a result of the planet's slow rotation on its axis and rapid movement around the sun, a day on Mercury lasts 176 Earth days (interval between one sunrise and the next). Composition Mercury is the second densest major body in the solar system after Planet Earth and its density is slightly less than the Earths. Mercury's smaller mass makes its force of gravity only about a third as strong as that of the Earth. An object that weighs 100 pounds on the Earth would weigh only about 38 pounds on Mercury. Mercury has a large iron core which is most likely at least partially molten and generates a magnetic field about 1% as strong as that of Earth's. Mercury's interior appears to resemble that of the Earth. Both planets have a rocky layer called a mantle beneath their crust and both planets have an iron core. Surface
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MERCURY NOTES - MERCURY: The Planet Mercury is the closest...

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