Shortcut Navigation:

Grades 9-12

Messenger: Mission to Mercury

Science Bulletin

MESSENGER: Mission to Mercury

The MESSENGER orbiter's January 2008 flyby of the planet Mercury was historic. The last time a spacecraft visited was 1975, and it only mapped half the planet. MESSENGER is now sending back a complete picture of Mercury, shedding light on its geological history. But the ongoing mission will return much more than images. Its data on the planet's core, magnetic field, composition, and other attributes will help scientists answer pressing questions about the evolution of the terrestrial planets and even the Solar System itself. In the feature video, watch the MESSENGER science team react as the orbiter's first images of Mercury roll in. To explore the images in detail, click on the slide show at left. Find out more on the mission by clicking on the essay "First Planet Finishes Last."


Climate Change: The Multiplier Effect

How much can you reduce your carbon dioxide emissions? Is it worth it? Learn how simple choices multiplied by everyone in your community can make a big difference.


Curriculum Materials

Exploring Bolivia's Biodiversity

Bolivia’s diversity of animal and plant life is among the greatest in the world. Learn why the country has designated more than 17 percent of its land as protected areas.



Mermaid Migration

Follow mermaids around the world and throughout history to see first-hand how cultures share and reinterpret mythic creatures.



Investigate Mysterious Creatures

The elusive giant squid was first described 500 years ago by Scandinavian sailors. Investigate what we've learned--and what still remains unknown--about this mysterious deep-ocean creature.

Curriculum Materials

Mythic Creatures Online Resources

Continue tracking mythic creatures through the art they've inspired and the science they've helped shape with this collection of related Web sites.



Using Solar Energy

After having students conduct a simple solar energy experiment, challenge them to build a better water heater with this classroom competition.


American Museum of Natural History

Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192
Phone: 212-769-5100

Open daily from 10 am-5:45 pm
except on Thanksgiving and Christmas
Maps and Directions

Enlighten Your Inbox

Stay informed about Museum news and research, events, and more!