One yr after NASA introduced an indefinite delay of a much-anticipated mission to go to a metal-rich asteroid, the company mentioned Monday that the Psyche spacecraft is again on observe. The Psyche mission is now scheduled to launch in 4 months on a Falcon Heavy rocket, and everybody concerned within the undertaking feels good about that date.
“We imagine Psyche is on a optimistic course for an October 2023 launch,” mentioned Thomas Younger, who chaired an impartial evaluation board that NASA convened final summer season after the mission was delayed.
If the mission does launch this fall, the spacecraft will attain asteroid Psyche in August 2029. There, it is going to go into orbit for 26 months to achieve insights into planetary formation, perceive the inside of terrestrial planets like Earth, and look at a world that’s made largely of steel. The mission can be of curiosity to the nascent asteroid mining neighborhood, which seeks to be taught concerning the potential worth harbored by these comparatively uncommon, metallic asteroids.
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