Cookie Monster crater on Mercury

October 15, 2012 by Nancy Atkinson, Universe Today
The MESSENGER spacecraft acquired this image on August 29, 2012.

Big Bird has been grabbing the headlines lately, and its time for another Muppet to get a little face time. So, here's Cookie Monster's face, plastered across the surface of Mercury. Well, it looks like it, anyway. This is an image from the MESSENGER spacecraft, orbiting Mercury, and the folks at Goddard Space Flight Center suggested this superposition of younger craters on older craters (in this case two smaller and shadowed craters that look like googly eyes placed on the rim of an older crater) appears to resemble everyone's favorite blue, Sesame Street, cookie-loving monster.

While most of us can enjoy this image for the pareidolia effect of seeing a familiar face (and start salivating about cookies), what scientists are looking at here are craters. Specifically in this image, the Law of Superposition allows scientists to determine which surface features pre- and postdate others, leading to a better understanding of the of different regions of Mercury's surface.

Or, in Sesame Street lingo, which comes first?

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Also, C is for crater.

Explore further: A peek at a pitch-black pit

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3 comments

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JustChris
5 / 5 (2) Oct 15, 2012
Oh my, oh my! This must be a sign from Aliens that they want us to give them cookies in exchange for technology!
Birger
5 / 5 (2) Oct 15, 2012
Naah. This is just graffiti by the cookie-monster-shaped aliens that helped ferry the (Mormon) god Elohim here from the Kolob* star system.
*The home system of the Mormon god, according to their prophets.
DarkHorse66
not rated yet Oct 16, 2012
Cookies???!
That looks more like a footprint.
Who smuggled the elephant onto Mercury......? :D
Cheers, DH66
(Psst, Birger, if that Mormon god lives there now, and just went for a stroll...?)

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