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Kind: Planetary science

State: Operational

Place: Mercury

Operator: ESA · JAXA



Duration: Cruise: 7 yearsScience phase: 1 yearElapsed: 2 years and 17 days

Mission Ending

"Life's like a movie, write your own ending. Keep believing, keep pretending." - Jim Henson


Rocket: Ariane 5 ECA

Kind: ESA · JAXA

Manufacturer: Airbus · ISAS

Mass: 4,100 kg (9,000 lb)

Launch Site: Centre Spatial Guyanais


1º Flyby: Earth (gravity assist)

2º Flyby: Venus (gravity assist)

3º Flyby: Venus (gravity assist)


1º Orbit: Mercury

2º Orbit: Mercury


Component: Mercury Magnetospheric Orbiter(MMO)

BepiColombo is a joint mission of the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to the planet Mercury. The mission comprises two satellites launched together: the Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO) and Mio (Mercury Magnetospheric Orbiter, MMO). The mission will perform a comprehensive study of Mercury, including characterization of its magnetic field, magnetosphere, and both interior and surface structure. It was launched on an Ariane 5 rocket on 20 October 2018 at 01:45 UTC, with an arrival at Mercury planned for on 5 December 2025, after a flyby of Earth, two flybys of Venus, and six flybys of Mercury. The mission was approved in November 2009, after years in proposal and planning as part of the European Space Agency's Horizon 2000+ programme, it is the last mission of the programme to be launched.