BepiColombo is Europe’s first mission to Mercury. It will set off in 2018 on a journey to the smallest and least explored terrestrial planet in our Solar System. When it arrives at Mercury, it will endure temperatures in excess of 350 °C and gather data during its 1 year nominal mission, with a possible 1-year extension. The mission comprises two spacecraft: the Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO) and the Mercury Magnetospheric Orbiter (MMO). BepiColombo is a joint mission between ESA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), executed under ESA leadership.
For IAPS, Bepi Colombo will be among the main activities of the next decade, with the PIship of the experiments ISA (accelerometer) and Serena (for the analysis of particles) and the CoPI-ship of SIMBIO-SYS (Spectrometers and Imagers).