The structure of the planet Mercury, which is the closest hotel to our luminary, scientists struck - the planet in its structure similar to an orange with a thick rind. And under the thin crust and the mantle of the cosmic body hides an iron core gigantic proportions.
The core is composed of three different layers and is 80% of the entire planet. "Our understanding of the internal structure of Mercury’s initial observations did not fit, so we had some doubts about the data from the probe. Checks completed, we realized that the observations were indeed correct and processed according to new data from the theory" - said David Smith, one of the researchers Space Flight Center of NASA’s Goddard in your message the magazine Science.
As is known, in 2004, NASA launched the probe "Messenger" to Mercury, which was released on its orbit, and then conducted an analysis of its chemical and physical properties by using highly sensitive spectrometers and cameras installed on board the probe and operating in the infrared and visible range.
Next, a team of scientists led by Maria Zuber of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, studied all the structural features of the interior of Mercury, based on data obtained from a space probe, and created a map of the possible gravitational anomalies. In particular, the large anomalies experts managed to discover in the area of the northern pole of the planet, as well as in the area of the crater Caloris - Mercury trace of a collision with a large asteroid.
Information obtained probe, have been studied and a second group of astronomers led by Professor Di Yan, has been studying the structural features of the topography of the planet, namely, the height differences on the surface.
By combining their results, the scientists were able to make a very unexpected conclusion: it was found that the average thickness of the crust and mantle of Mercury is only 18% of the diameter of the planet, about 300-400 kilometers, and the rest of the volume of space it occupies the core of the body, consisting of three main parts - a relatively thin layer of iron and sulfur compounds, 40% of the alloy layer of iron and other elements, and the central portion is a solid iron core. It is worth noting that the current study astronomers have completely turned all their previous ideas about the structure of the planet, and gave food for thought as to how much unexplored geological activity in the solar system.