MESSENGER is in good health and its systems are operating normally. Last week, with no significant spacecraft operations on the schedule, the Mission Operations team at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) continued working on software upgrades for MESSENGER's flight and ground systems and planning for upcoming flight activities.
This week the MESSENGER science team is meeting at APL to review plans for the Earth flyby on August 2.
Stat Corner: MESSENGER is about 92.7 million miles (149.3 million kilometers) from the Sun and 30.7 million miles (49.4 million kilometers) from Earth. At that distance, a signal from Earth reaches the spacecraft in 2 minutes, 44 seconds. The spacecraft is moving around the Sun at 66,740 miles (107, 407 kilometers) per hour. MESSENGER's onboard computers have executed 26,570 commands from mission operators since launch.