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9 - Cosmomineralogy

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 August 2021

Alan Rubin
Affiliation:
University of California, Los Angeles
Chi Ma
Affiliation:
Caltech
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Summary

Mercury is the smallest and innermost major planet (Figure 9.1); from the perspective of Earth-bound observers, it never appears more than 28° from the Sun. It is locked in a state of spin-orbit coupling: its rotation period (58.646 Earth days) is exactly two-thirds of its year (87.969 Earth days). Mercury is named after the Greco-Roman messenger to the gods, perhaps because of its rapid apparent day-to-day movement with respect to the Sun. Compared to the other major planets, Mercury has the most eccentric orbit (e = 0.2056), the highest inclination relative to the ecliptic (7.007°), and the smallest axial tilt (0.01°). It has a weak magnetic field (~1.1 percent as strong as Earth’s) and no natural satellites.

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Meteorite Mineralogy , pp. 200 - 238
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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  • Cosmomineralogy
  • Alan Rubin, University of California, Los Angeles, Chi Ma
  • Book: Meteorite Mineralogy
  • Online publication: 11 August 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108613767.010
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  • Cosmomineralogy
  • Alan Rubin, University of California, Los Angeles, Chi Ma
  • Book: Meteorite Mineralogy
  • Online publication: 11 August 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108613767.010
Available formats
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Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Cosmomineralogy
  • Alan Rubin, University of California, Los Angeles, Chi Ma
  • Book: Meteorite Mineralogy
  • Online publication: 11 August 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108613767.010
Available formats
×