Magnificent Mercury

Written and Illustrated By Elizabeth Moore

Mercury and its Name

Did you know Mercury got its name from a roman god that brung messages to other gods? Mercury travels the sun quicker than any other planet. The roman god Mercury was known for his speed.

Days, Years and Temperatures

Mercury’s atmosphere is made up of helium and gases. Since the atmosphere is so thin, it is either 872 degrees Fahrenheit during the day or - 298 degrees Fahrenheit during the night. Also, the sun only lights half of it at once. Mercury has the biggest temperature range. It takes Mercury 1,408 Earth hours to finish one rotation and 88 Earth days to finish one revolution. Mercury goes through phases like the moon. We can only see part of Mercury’s lit side from Earth.

Size and Craters

Mercury has a lot of craters. The biggest crater is the Caloris Basin. It is eight hundred miles wide! The mountains around it are up to one mile high. The craters were made when meteorites and comets hit Mercury. Rocks flew up in the air and crashed down and made even more craters. Mercury is the second smallest planet, the first is Pluto. Mercury is made up of three layers. It has a large iron middle, a layer of liquid material, and a thin rocky crust. Mercury is one of the rocky planets. Its density is 5.4. Density is the measurement that tells the wait of something compared to its size.

Closest to the Sun

Mercury just like Earth travels in an elliptical orbit around the sun. Mercury’s average distance from the sun is 36 million miles! That is way less than Earth’s distance. Mercury is the closest planet to the sun. Since it’s so close to the sun, it gets lots of sunlight. You can see Mercury with your eyes right before sunrise in the eastern sky and right after sunset in the western sky. Mercury is a very interesting planet.

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