The year 2012 has been an eventful and busy one for the MESSENGER mission, and there are more new data and discoveries to look forward to in 2013! However, as the year draws to an end, let's take the time to reflect back on 2012 with the help of 12 MESSENGER images. It's also worth reflecting on just how far the mission has come and how much it has accomplished by revisiting the traditional yearly compilations from 2008
, and 2011
• January: Hollows on the Hills
• February: Oh Amaral!
• March: Highs and Lows of Goethe
• April: V for Victoria
• May: Fonteyn Crater
• June: Rockin' Rachmaninoff
• July: A Light and Dark Duo
• August: On the Edge
• September: Radiating Troughs of Pantheon Fossae
• October: Degas and Friends
• November: Northern Exposure
• December: As Soft As Velvet
The MESSENGER spacecraft is the first ever to orbit the planet Mercury, and the spacecraft's seven scientific instruments and radio science investigation
are unraveling the history and evolution of the Solar System's innermost planet. Visit the Why Mercury?
section of this website to learn more about the key science questions that the MESSENGER mission is addressing. During the one-year primary mission, MESSENGER acquired 88,746 images and extensive other data sets. MESSENGER is now in a yearlong extended mission, during which plans call for the acquisition of more than 80,000 additional images to support MESSENGER's science goals.
Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
For information regarding the use of MESSENGER images, see the image use policy.