Mercury's mysterious 'darkness' revealed

Scientists have long been puzzled about what makes Mercury's surface so dark. The innermost planet reflects much less sunlight than the Moon, a body on which surface darkness is controlled by the abundance of iron-rich minerals. ...

Altimeter built at Goddard helped identify ice on Mercury

A Goddard-built instrument on NASA's MESSENGER mission provided one of three new lines of evidence that water ice exists near the north pole of Mercury. Most of the ice is covered by a thin layer of material that blankets ...

Protecting astronauts from space radiation

(Phys.org)—The complexities of traveling to and working in space present challenges to astronauts that NASA scientists and engineers have been working on since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin first stepped on the moon more ...

Dawn craft to depart asteroid for dwarf planet

One asteroid down, one to go. After spending a year gazing at Vesta, NASA's Dawn spacecraft was set to cruise toward the most massive space rock in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter—a voyage that will take nearly ...

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