Mercury Transitions

  • Jonathan Powell
Part of the Astronomers' Universe book series (ASTRONOM)


Mercury is a curious little world and still presents astronomers with a great many questions. The smallest and innermost planet of our Solar System offers little to the naked eye, and without superior telescopic capability, little to the observer. With an orbital period around the Sun of just 87.97 days and speeding through space at nearly 47 km per second, this planetary representation of a Roman deity is the quickest of any planet to orbit the Sun. Yet, it is our very Sun that has led science to find out a great deal about Mercury beyond the information gathered from various missions to the planet and ground-based observations. For it is the Mercurian transits that have given us great insight into this tiny world measuring just 4878 km in diameter, comparable to the size of the continental United States.

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathan Powell
    • 1
  1. 1.Ebbw ValeUK

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