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BepiColombo sends the first image of it's trip to Mercury

The snapshot received this Saturday shows one of the solar panels, which is appreciated in perfect condition, experts say.

Monday, October 22, 2018

| Khabar Site
The space probe BepiColombo sent the first selfie of its trip to Mercury , an image that confirms that, as planned by the European Space Agency (ESA), its solar panels have been deployed correctly.


The transfer module, which together with two orbiters and a thermal shield left this Friday at 22:45 local time of Kurú, in French Guiana, is equipped with three monitoring cameras, which provide black and white photographs with a resolution of 1,024 by 1,024 pixels.


The snapshot received today shows one of the panels and "it's perfect, and we are satisfied" ESA science director Günther Hasinger told.

"It is the visual confirmation that everything is going well," added the German, who since February succeeds Álvaro Giménez as the person in charge of the agency's scientific program .

The monitoring chambers will be used as necessary during the cruise phase, especially during the nine overflights that will make the Earth, Venus and Mercury before reaching the orbit of that planet, the smallest and closest to the Sun of our Solar System .

The other two cameras of the module will be activated tomorrow, Sunday, ESA said in a statement.

Although one of the orbiters, the Mercury Planetarium developed by ESA, also has a camera, it will only work when it separates from the transfer module when it reaches its destination at the end of 2025.

This mission is the first of the ESA to Mercury and has been launched along with its Japanese counterpart, JAXA, in an attempt to decipher the many unknowns of that planet, only visited in the past by two other ships, Mariner 10 and Messenger, both Americans
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