Astronomy Picture of the Day
March 10, 2014

Abedin's Sunlit Wall
Abedin's Sunlit Wall

Credits: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington and Dr Paolo C. Fienga/LXTT/IPF for the additional process. and color.

A small section of the Eastern Inner Wall of the beautiful Mercurian Abedin Crater is featured in this image taken by the NASA - MESSENGER Spacecraft on September, 23, 2013. As you can see, the Crater's sunlit Eastern Wall neatly meets the rugged Floor of Abedin, which occupies the left side of the scene. The Floor of Abedin Crater is largely covered with Rock that was melted as a consequence of the Impact Event, then "ponded" (---> formed an almost  still lake of molten Material) and, some time afterwards (probably a VERY little time) solidified and partially cracked, as it cooled off.

Date acquired: September, 23rd, 2013
Image Mission Elapsed Time (MET): 22252071
Image ID: 4875876
Instrument: Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) of the Mercury Dual Imaging System (MDIS)
Center Latitude: 62,28° North
Center Longitude: 352,00° East
Solar Incidence Angle: 83,6° (meaning that the Sun, at the time that the picture was taken, was about 6,4° above the imaged Local Mercurian Horizon)
Emission Angle: 22,1°
Sun-Mercury-Messenger (or "Phase") Angle: 105,8°

This picture (which is an Original NASA - MESSENGER Spacecraft's b/w and Map-Projected image published on the NASA - Planetary Photojournal with the ID n. PIA 18062) has been additionally processed, contrast enhanced, Gamma corrected, magnified to aid the visibility of the details and then colorized in Absolute Natural Colors (such as the colors that a human eye would actually perceive if someone were onboard the NASA - MESSENGER Spacecraft and then looked outside, towards the Surface of Mercury), by using an original technique created - and, in time, dramatically improved - by the Lunar Explorer Italia Team. Different colors, as well as different shades of the same color, mean, among other things, the existence of different Elements (Minerals) present on the Surface of Mercury, each having a different Albedo (---> Reflectivity) and Chemical Composition.

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