NASA Completes MESSENGER Mission with Expected Impact on Mercury’s Surface

A NASA planetary exploration mission came to a planned, but nonetheless dramatic, end Thursday when it slammed into Mercury’s surface at about 8,750 mph and created a new crater on the planet’s surface. Mission controllers at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland, have confirmed NASA’s MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, […]

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MESSENGER

Mission Overview Launched: Aug. 3, 2004 Mercury Orbit: March 17, 2011 Mission Completed: April 30, 2015 Goal: Understanding Mercury, the smallest, densest and least-explored of the terrestrial planets. MESSENGER was designed to map the surface composition, study the magnetic field and interior structure of our solar system’s smallest and innermost planet — Mercury. It carries eight instruments to study […]

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