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This is a drawing of Mercury's magnetosphere
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Magnetosphere of Mercury

Mercury is the only terrestrial planet other than the Earth that has a significant magnetic field (220 nT). This field, along with the planet's high density and small size relative to the Earth, indicates that it probably has a molten iron core. The magnetic field is approximately dipolar and is tilted less than 10 degrees from Mercury's rotation axis. Mariner 10 observed a shock wave called a "bow shock" in front of the planet, where the planet's magnetic field meets the magnetic field carried by the oncomi ng solar wind. Other magnetospheric phenomena have been observed at Mercury.

Last modified June 1, 2009 by Randy Russell.

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA