Moore on Mercury

The Planet and the Missions

  • Authors
  • Patrick Moore

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vii
  2. Pages 1-4
  3. Pages 5-11
  4. Pages 27-35
  5. Pages 37-46
  6. Pages 47-54
  7. Pages 55-63
  8. Pages 65-71
  9. Pages 73-83
  10. Pages 85-104
  11. Pages 105-113
  12. Pages 115-118
  13. Pages 119-123
  14. Pages 125-129
  15. Back Matter
    Pages 131-139

About this book


Mercury is one of the more difficult objects for amateur astronomers to observe because of its close proximity to the Sun. For the same reason, it is also one of the most fascinating and strange planets. Mercury is not much larger that our Moon, but orbits the Sun at an average distance of only 58 million km, compared to the Earth’s 150 million km. On its sunlit side, Mercury’s surface temperature can exceed 450C while the night side freezes at –180C.

Amateur astronomers can see Mercury and its ever-changing phases all year, and sometimes watch it transit the Sun – the next transit is in November 2006, followed by one in May 2016.

In his inimitable, easy-going style, Patrick Moore describes Mercury, the professional astronomers who have observed it over the centuries, amateur observations, and the past, present and future space missions to this extraordinary world.


Planet Solar System environment moon solar sun telescope

Bibliographic information