Thermal evolution of Mercury as constrained by MESSENGER observations

  title={Thermal evolution of Mercury as constrained by MESSENGER observations},
  author={Nathalie C. Michel and Steven A. Hauck, and Sean C. Solomon and Roger J. Phillips and J. H. Roberts and Maria T. Zuber},
  journal={Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets},
  pages={1033 - 1044}
Orbital observations of Mercury by the MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft provide new constraints on that planet's thermal and interior evolution. Specifically, MESSENGER observations have constrained the rate of radiogenic heat production via measurement of uranium, thorium, and potassium at the surface, and identified a range of surface compositions consistent with high‐temperature, high‐degree partial melts of the mantle. Additionally… 

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