Status Report

Messenger Status Report 30 May 2003

By SpaceRef Editor
May 30, 2003
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Messenger Status Report 30 May 2003

The MESSENGER team is assembling the spacecraft in a cleanroom to protect
the science instruments and other sensitive components from contamination.

The assembly process actually produces shavings from drilling holes, debris
from fitting insulation blankets, and small particles carried in by workers.

Engineers routinely inspect and clean the spacecraft; in this picture they
are cleaning out the Launch Vehicle Adaptor, which will house four
scientific instruments (see May 1 image). The anti-static mat under the
spacecraft cuts down on static electric discharges and makes it easier to
find screws and other small parts that may be dropped during assembly.

Later this week the first science instrument, the Mercury Atmospheric and
Surface Composition Spectrometer (MASCS), will be installed in the Launch
Vehicle Adapter – a major milestone for the MESSENGER project.

SpaceRef staff editor.