The Psyche mission, a journey to a metal asteroid, has been selected for flight under NASA’s Discovery Program, a series of lower-cost, highly focused robotic space missions that are exploring the solar system.
Psyche includes prominent roles for Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences (EAPS) professors Maria Zuber (leading the Gravity investigation), Richard Binzel (asteroid composition expert), and Benjamin Weiss (leading the Magnetometer investigation). The mission principal investigator is former EAPS professor Lindy Elkins-Tanton ’87, SM ’87, PhD ’02, now director of Arizona State University’s School of Earth and Space Exploration (SESE).
The mission’s spacecraft is expected to launch in 2023, arriving at the asteroid in 2030, where it will spend 20 months in orbit, mapping it and studying its properties. … (MIT)