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The Swiftest Planet
Sun-scorched Mercury is only slightly larger than Earth's moon. Like the moon, Mercury has very little atmosphere to stop impacts, and it is covered with craters. Mercury's dayside is super-heated by the sun, but at night temperatures drop hundreds of degrees below freezing. Ice may even exist in craters. Mercury's egg-shaped orbit takes it around the sun every 88 days.

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young

When used to describe a planetary surface "young" means that the visible features are of relatively recent origin, i.e. that older features have been destroyed (e.g. by erosion or lava flows). Young surfaces exhibit few impact craters and are typically varied and complex. In contrast an "old" surface is one that has changed relatively little over geologic time. The surfaces of Earth and Io are young; the surfaces of Mercury and Callisto are old.

 
Can't find it? Don't understand it? Ask us.
Q
young

When used to describe a planetary surface "young" means that the visible features are of relatively recent origin, i.e. that older features have been destroyed (e.g. by erosion or lava flows). Young surfaces exhibit few impact craters and are typically varied and complex. In contrast an "old" surface is one that has changed relatively little over geologic time. The surfaces of Earth and Io are young; the surfaces of Mercury and Callisto are old.