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MESSENGER Mission News
June 10, 2011

NASA Releasing New Spacecraft Orbital Views of Mercury
NASA will host a news conference at 1 p.m. EDT on Thursday, June 16, 2011, to reveal new images and science findings from the first spacecraft to orbit Mercury. The event will be held in the NASA Headquarters auditorium located at 300 E St. SW, in Washington. NASA Television and the agency's website will broadcast the event.

NASA's MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging, or MESSENGER spacecraft conducted more than a dozen laps through the inner solar system for six years prior to achieving the historic orbit insertion on March 17, 2011 (EDT).

Briefing participants are:
-- Brett Denevi, scientist, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), Laurel, Md.
-- Ralph McNutt, Jr., MESSENGER project scientist, APL
-- Larry Nittler, scientist, Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution of Washington
-- Sean Solomon, MESSENGER principal investigator, Carnegie Institution

Reporters may attend the event, ask questions from participating NASA locations, or join by phone. To obtain dial-in information, journalists must email Dwayne Brown at dwayne.c.brown@nasa.gov with their name, media affiliation and work telephone number by 9 a.m. on June 16, 2011.

For more information about the mission, visit:


For NASA TV streaming video, downlink and schedule information, visit:


MESSENGER (MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) is a NASA-sponsored scientific investigation of the planet Mercury and the first space mission designed to orbit the planet closest to the Sun. The MESSENGER spacecraft launched on August 3, 2004, and entered orbit about Mercury on March 17, 2011 (March 18, 2011 UTC), to begin a yearlong study of its target planet. Dr. Sean C. Solomon, of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, leads the mission as Principal Investigator. The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory built and operates the MESSENGER spacecraft and manages this Discovery-class mission for NASA.

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