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How a steady stream of comet dust may have 'painted' Mercury black
How a steady stream of comet dust may have 'painted' Mercury black

The mystery of Mercury's excessively dark surface may have just been solved. A team of researchers working at Brown University say the planet's inky appearance may be the result of a near constant rain of impacts from tiny specks of cometary dust that "painted" the planet black over billions of years.  The research was published Monday in Nature Geoscience. Scientists have long wondered why Mercury was so much darker than our moon -- reflecting just one-third of the amount of light that the moon reflects. The two bodies are often compared, explained lead author Megan Bruck Syal, who is a postdoctoral researcher at the Lawrence...

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