Mercury lacks an atmosphere and instead has a thin exosphere made up of atoms blasted off the surface by the solar wind and meteoroids. The exosphere of Mercury is largely made up of oxygen, sodium, hydrogen, helium, and potassium. It also contains traces of other elements such as silicon, phosphorus, sulfur, iron, magnesium, aluminum, calcium, and zinc.
However, due to its proximity to the Sun, it is subject to high levels of radiation which would destroy most organic molecules. The only way for oxygen to exist on Mercury is if it was brought there by a spacecraft or some type of probe.
Currently, there are two rovers roaming around on Mercury that were sent by NASA. Mariner 10 was the first mission to orbit Mercury and in 1974, it took pictures from 22,000 miles away from planet Earth. MESSENGER is still orbiting Mercury today and will continue to do so for at least another year before it runs out of fuel.
Furthermore, there are plans to send another rover to Mercury in 2020 called MER-B. This new rover will be more powerful and able to climb higher mountains than the current rovers. In addition, it will also be able to search for signs of past life on Mercury using a particle accelerator called a GAISER.
Mercury's atmosphere is continually being replenished with gases. The atmosphere of Mercury contains trace quantities of hydrogen, helium, and oxygen. It also contains traces of sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. Some of the gas particles are emitted by the sun's wind. Others are ejected by volcanoes on the planet's surface.
The most abundant element in Mercury's core is mercury, which makes up 95% of its mass. The remaining 5% is iron. Earth has about the same amount of mercury as Mercury, but more than three times as much iron as Mercury.
Therefore, like Earth, Mercury is a metal that is mostly made up of iron with some other elements added to it. However, because it has less iron than Earth, Mercury's outer layer is more like ice than rock.
Gas planets such as Jupiter and Saturn have thick atmospheres because they contain large amounts of hydrogen and helium. These gases are the most common elements in the universe. Everything else is made up of atoms with more exotic elements such as boron, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, sulfur, and zinc mixed in them.
Even though Mercury has air and water vapor in its atmosphere, these elements make up only 1-4% of the whole planet.
Mercury's atmospheric pressure is incredibly low, around a thousandth of a trillionth of that of the Earth at sea level. Data demonstrate that Mercury contains carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and other known gases, albeit in minute levels. The presence of carbon dioxide suggests that organic material may be abundant on the planet.
Furthermore, studies have shown that carbon-based molecules are very likely present in the core of Mercury. This would make sense if it were indeed formed by colliding planets, since such collisions should produce much more carbon than other elements. The fact that these studies have been able to detect carbon indicates that it must be present in relatively large amounts.
In conclusion, the most accurate current models predict that Mercury has a substantial amount of carbon within its body. This carbon might be in the form of simple hydrocarbons or more complex organics.
The abundance of hydrogen implies that most of the carbon will be in the form of carbon monoxide and methane, rather than simple carbons such as graphite or diamonds. However, some of the carbon will be in the form of aromatic compounds such as benzene which do not include any free hydrogens. Thus, even though most of the carbon will be bound up with other elements, some will still be available for chemical reactions.
Carbon is also used to make organic chemicals that can be biological markers.
The Earth's crust What exactly is mercury? Mercury is a naturally occurring chemical element that may be found in rocks in the earth's crust, including coal deposits. It can also be found in small amounts in meteorites and other solar particles that hit the planet's surface.
When objects from space crash into the planet, they can contain elements not found in terrestrial sources. These cosmic ingredients are responsible for creating new materials that cannot yet be found on Earth. A good example is gold, which is made up of electrons surrounded by a cloud of atoms with a nucleus made of heavy elements such as lead, uranium, or plutonium.
Mercury is a natural element present in its elemental form in hydrocarbon deposits. It can also be found in some ores containing silver, gold, copper, or zinc. When these minerals are exposed to air, water, heat, and pressure, they can release some mercury into the environment. This happens during mining, processing of ore bodies, and when metals are recycled.
In addition, certain bacteria and fungi can transform inorganic mercury into organic forms that can be absorbed by plants. Animals eat these plants, and their digestive systems break down the mercury allowing it to enter the food chain.
Mercury has a huge liquid metal core surrounded by a silica mantle and a solid outer crust.
The mantle is mainly magnesium oxide with some silicon dioxide and traces of other elements. The surface is covered by a thin layer of mercury above an iron core.
Magnesium and oxygen are the most common elements in the mantle, but there may be small amounts of sulfur, calcium, aluminum, phosphorus, gold, silver, platinum, or uranium present as well.
It is believed that over time, meteoroids impact the surface of the planet, breaking up into pieces that melt when they reach the core. This produces volcanoes that pour molten rock into the sea where it forms new islands. As this process continues, the island grows until it reaches the surface and becomes part of the crust. However, since Mercury has no atmosphere to break down these rocks, its crust is very weak and almost completely eroded by solar radiation.
The only thing protecting Mercury's surface is its name. It has no ozone layer to filter out harmful rays from the sun, so every square inch of its surface is exposed to sunlight.
Mercury enters the environment in three different ways. First, mercury is naturally released into the atmosphere by volcanoes, rock weathering, forest fires, and soils. Mercury, once released into the atmosphere, can travel hundreds of miles with the wind before landing on the earth's surface. This is why many regions thousands of miles away from any known source of pollution have high levels of mercury in their soil and water.
Second, human activities such as gold mining, coal burning, and manure disposal are responsible for adding more mercury to our environment. Some of this added mercury remains in the area where it was created, but some gets transported by winds or water to other places where it can have an impact on wildlife or humans.
Third, mercury spills into the environment due to industrial accidents or illegal dumping. These releases can be large amounts over a short period of time, or small amounts over a long period of time.
Once in the environment, how does mercury affect plants and animals? Mercury affects organisms in two ways: directly, by entering their cells and causing damage; and indirectly, by changing the physical properties of soil or water so that it is no longer suitable for growing things. Over time, exposure to low levels of mercury can lead to serious health problems for animals and people. The most sensitive individuals-such as pregnant women, infants, and adults living in contaminated areas-are at greatest risk from mercury poisoning.