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Date: June 4, 2007 at 2 p.m. EDT


For the second time in less than a year, NASA's MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft will swing by Venus on June 5, 2007, to use the pull of the planet's gravity to guide it closer to Mercury's orbit. The encounter offers opportunities for new observations of the Venus atmosphere and cloud structure, space environment, and, perhaps even the surface. MESSENGER will also tag up with the European Venus Express spacecraft-currently orbiting Venus-to make novel observations of the Venus environment.


- Marilyn Lindstrom, MESSENGER Program Scientist, NASA Headquarters, Washington
- Sean Solomon, MESSENGER Principal Investigator, The Carnegie Institution of Washington, Washington
- Eric Finnegan, MESSENGER Mission Systems Engineer, The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, MD
- Håkan Svedhem, Venus Express Project Scientist, European Space Agency, Noordwijk, The Netherlands


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Contact Information:

Paulette Campbell
Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
Laurel, Maryland
Phone: 240.228.6792

Dwayne Brown/Tabatha Thompson
NASA Headquarters Washington, DC
Phone: 202.358.1726/3895

Tina McDowell
Carnegie Institution of Washington
Washington, DC
Phone: 202.939.1120

Monica Talevi
European Space Agency
Noordwijk, The Netherlands
Phone: +31 71 565 3223

Event Information:

The NASA MESSENGER Media teleconference will take place on Monday, June 4, 2007 at 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. To participate in the teleconference, reporters in the United States should call 1-888-324-6998 and use the pass code "Venus." International reporters should call 1-210-234-0009. Audio of the teleconference will be streamed live at: http://www.nasa.gov/newsaudio.

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