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Earth-Based Views of Mercury

Mercury, the planet closest to the Sun, is very difficult to observe from Earth. The planet is only one-third the diameter of the Earth, and can be studied by telescope only during the day or when the Sun is rising or setting. When Mercury is near the horizon, the interference created by Earth's atmosphere reduces the visibility even with the best telescopes.

Telescopic View Earth-based telescopic photo of Mercury taken from Catalina Observatory 1.5 meter (61 inch) telescope.

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1920 Map Map of Mercury prepared by E.M. Antoniadi in the 1920's.

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Mercury Facts || Earth-based Views || A Day On Mercury
Surface Of Mercury || Mariner 10 Encounters

Mercury Home

1998 National Air and Space Museum