Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Messenger Speeds Past Mercury

The view as Messenger approaches.

The robot spacecraft Messenger flew past the planet Mercury yesterday, making it 3 times it has flown past the planet and used its gravity to help it slow down and adjust its orbit. At one point the spacecraft was only 142 miles above the cratered surface. The next time Messenger approaches, it will be able to enter a normal orbit and begin its main mission of observation.

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