by Staff Writers
Laurel MD (SPX) Sep 17, 2012
MESSENGER Data from Second Full Mercury Solar Day in Orbit Released by Planetary Data System
Late last week, the Planetary Data System (PDS) released data collected during MESSENGER's seventh through twelfth month in orbit around Mercury.
PDS archives and distributes all of NASA's planetary mission data. With this release, images and measurements are now available to the public for the second full Mercury solar day of MESSENGER orbital operations.
NASA requires that all of its planetary missions archive data in the PDS, an active archive that makes available well-documented, peer-reviewed data to the research community.
The PDS includes eight science teams, called discipline nodes, each of which is centered at a university or research institution and specializes in a specific area of planetary data. The contributions from these nodes provide a data-rich source for scientists, researchers, and developers.
In this eighth release of MESSENGER measurements by PDS, calibrated data from all seven of the mission's science instruments, plus radio science data from the spacecraft telecommunications system, are included.
The MESSENGER team has created a software tool with which the public can view data from this delivery. ACT-REACT-QuickMap provides an interactive Web interface to MESSENGER data.
Developed by Applied Coherent Technology Corporation, the software allows users to examine global mosaics constructed with high-resolution images from this and previous PDS deliveries.
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The shock of separation
Paris, France (ESA) Aug 31, 2012
The BepiColombo mission to Mercury has undergone a series of shock tests at ESA's test facilities to replicate conditions it will experience during its intense ride into space. This video shows tests to mimic the moment it separates from the launch vehicle. The spacecraft will be connected to the upper stage of an Ariane 5 rocket when it blasts off from Earth in 2015. Once the upper stage and it ... read more
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