Mercury and BepiColombo | University of Oxford
OSB archive
OSB archive

Mercury and BepiColombo

Pete Wilton

Yesterday the Messenger probe sailed within 125 miles of the surface of Mercury. This closest fly-by of the planet since 1975 has provoked considerable interest ahead of the probe going into orbit in 2011. Oxford scientists are involved in another Mercury mission, BepiColombo, due to launch in 2013. They are co-investigators on the MERTIS instrument which will examine the surface composition of the planet - in particular looking for feldspars - as well as examining how heat travels across the surface and heat flux in Mercury's interior.