(MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry and Ranging) will become the first spacecraft to enter Mercury's orbit. The craft, which is operated by the Johns Hopkins University
, has been racing through the inner solar system for the last six and a half years and will transmit the first new data from Mercury since
crossed the planet's orbit in 1973. NASA TV will carry a
from the APL's mission control building in Laurel from 8-10
And, the APL has a nifty
available to download that allows you to explore MESSENGER's Mercury imaging through Google Earth.