A Tribute to MESSENGER

If you’re reading this then you probably love space exploration, and if you love space exploration then you know how awesome the MESSENGER mission is — the incredibly successful venture by NASA, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, and the Carnegie Institution of Washington to orbit and study the first rock from the Sun in unprecedented detail. Since entering orbit around Mercury on March 18, 2011, MESSENGER has mapped nearly 100% of the planet’s surface, found unique landforms called hollows residing in many of its craters, and even discovered evidence of water ice at its poles! That’s a lot to get accomplished in just two years!

The video above, assembled by Mark ‘Indy’ Kochte, is a tribute to the many impressive achievements of the MESSENGER mission, featuring orbital animations (love that MESSENGER shimmy!), surface photos, and the approach to the planet. Enjoy!

Images and animation stills courtesy NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington. Music: “Mercury Ridge” by Simon Wilkinson. Video creation and time-lapse animations by Mark ‘Indy’ Kochte.

5 Replies to “A Tribute to MESSENGER”

  1. Nice presentation. It is hard to get to Mercury due to the centripetal potential in the rotating frame of the solar system. It might be a while before we see a return to Mercury.


    1. You know what LC? When I first read your post I was puzzled about why Merc’s rotation hampered things. Being a few years from 60, my mind does slightly get forgetful w/age. Then in a flash of brilliant light w/in my minds eye. I remembered why merc’s rotation is what it is. A she Prof is the reason. Even her name I still have etched in my mind. It was her appearance that is the clincher that politely jarred my ever so slightly fading memory.

      Being 110% all man(+10% is added spirit w/age over 50). I was instantly transported back to age 24. I was a student in ‘her’ class. She was 41 at that time There are 4-letters to describe her appearance that describes an ‘action’. LC, if your a man. I’d bet the farm you know those 4-letters. Funny how w/out any doubts, the greatest creation of them all can still stir up warm fond youthful memories that never totally fade in a mans mind. A woman. A cutaful woman.(cutaful=cute & beautiful)at that. Why did I explained this? I WANT MY YOUTH BACK!…lol. A little humor goes a long, long way for any day ;-)… Take care LC.

      1. Great one word, 4 letter reply Jay. No normal red blooded American male missed her class, …period. ;-)…

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