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Messenger's First Mercury Flyby Scheduled For Today

For those of you just tuning in, the NASA Messenger spacecraft will be doing its first flyby of Mercury today. It's the first spacecraft from Earth to visit Mercury since Mariner 10 in 1974.

I've been seeing contradictory reports about when the closest approach will take place; I've seen both "around noon" and "2:04 PM EST." If anyone has more accurate information, I'd appreciate it.

Messenger is supposed to settle into orbit around Mercury in 2011, but it's scheduled to make two more passes of the planet before then. I'm looking forward to the new science – and the new pictures!

Comments

Just note that we will not see images till tomorrow as the craft will be in radio silence due to its location till then, at which time it begins its transmissions.
As long as Booster Gold comes out on Wednesday, I can wait for the Messenger pictures. :-)
But if Booster really does muck badly with time, maybe the Messenger will be sending back...THE WRONG PICTURES!!!
No! Not the wrong pictures!
Ah, the priorites of modern geekdom.
Well, Booster Gold has been a real (pardon the pun) issue for me. It's one of the comics I read first when it comes out, and last month it shipped fine in NYC to sdelmonte, but for some reason it was delayed in Boston, and I had to wait a whole week for it while people in New York already were talking about it.

This month's issue was supposed to come out last week, and it didn't. For a moment, I was worried that once again New York had it before us, but it turned out to have been delayed across the board.
Be glad you don't read manga - I guess many of the manga publishers don't deal well with Diamond, since bookstores tend to get most issues a week or so before comic stores. Issue 11 of Nodame Cantabile was "released" October 30th but Million Year Picnic says Diamond still doesn't have it.
I'm watching that, myself! The official website shows a clock on the right side, and the countdown shows less than an hour now.
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