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ANN ARBOR, MI
48109-1399
PHONE: (734)764-7260
FAX: (734) 764-7084


July 28, 2004

ADVISORY
U-M scientist involved in mission to Mercury available for comment

ANN ARBOR, Mich.— Associate professor Thomas Zurbuchen at the University of Michigan Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Science has been a sensor lead scientist on the Fast Imaging Plasma Spectrometer (FIPS), one of the scientific instruments carried on MESSENGER.

FIPS will observe low-energy ions coming from Mercury’s surface and sparse atmosphere, ionized atoms picked up by the solar wind and other solar wind components.

The spacecraft that will carry MESSENGER is scheduled for launch to Mercury between Aug. 2 and 14. MESSENGER should enter orbit around Mercury in March 2011.

Zurbuchen is available to comment. He can be reached at (734) 647-6835

For more on Zurbuchen, visit:  http://aoss.engin.umich.edu/go/index1.php?id1=10&id2=1&id3=46

Complete information about the MESSENGER Mission, including a press kit, is available at:

MESSENGER Home Page

http://solar-heliospheric.engin.umich.edu/Messenger/index.html

Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences

Contact: Mary Nehls-Frumkin
Phone: (734) 763-7305
E-mail: maryln@umich.edu

or

Contact: Laura Bailey
Phone: (734) 647-7087 or (734) 647-1848
E-mail: baileylm@umich.edu