BepiColombo Makes Second Closest Approach To Mercury; ESA Shares Fascinating Picture

Image Credit:indiatoday

On June 23, the BepiColombo spacecraft made its second close encounter with Mercury. 

Image Credit:republicworld

The spacecraft, which was launched on October 20, 2018, passed just 200 kilometres over Mercury's surface at 3:14 p.m. (IST).

The Mercury Transfer Module's Monitoring Camera 2 snapped a photo earlier today, five minutes after the closest approach, at a distance of 920 kilometres.

Image Credit:europianspaceagency

ESA identified Mercury's topography and impact craters in the spacecraft's photograph.

The straight, sunny scarp at the bottom of the photograph, known as "Challenger Rupes," is a significant feature that may be seen. 

About 170 kilometres of the 200-kilometer-long, two-kilometer-tall feature have been captured on camera. 

It's interesting to note that the International Astronomical Union Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature gave it its name as early as this month.

The smooth plains Catuilla Planum and Kunisada, as well as craters like the Izquierdo, are other notable characteristics of Mercury that are emphasised by the unusual illumination

 According to ESA, the lighting in this image is not like any other case that has been observed

 According to the agency, BepiColombo's examination of the 130 km wide Eminescu crater

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