Unique physical and chemical characteristics of Mercury have been revealed by measurements from NASA's MESSENGER spacecraft. The closest planet to our Sun is made up of a large metallic core that is partially liquid, a thin mantle thought to be formed by solidification of a silicate magma ocean, and a relatively thick secondary crust produced by partial melting of the mantle followed by volcanic eruptions. However, the origin of the large metal/silicate ratio of the bulk planet and the conditions of accretion remain elusive. Metal enrichment may originate from primordial processes in the solar nebula or from a giant impact that stripped most of the silicate portion of a larger planet leaving Mercury as we know it today.
Research Article|February 01, 2019
The Origin and Differentiation of Planet Mercury
Elements (2019) 15 (1): 9-14.
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Bernard Charlier, Olivier Namur; The Origin and Differentiation of Planet Mercury. Elements ; 15 (1): 9–14. doi: https://doi.org/10.2138/gselements.15.1.9
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