According to the sheet SciTech Daily, NASA’s Psyche mission will officially launch in 2022 and is expected to reach the mysterious asteroid in late 2025 to early 2025. This will be the first metallic asteroid that humanity has ever studied. direct.
The Psyche spacecraft is about to launch – Photo: NASA
The mission will be led by Arizona State University, managed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL-Caltech). The key “warrior” is a large capacity solar-powered spacecraft, with a chassis manufactured at Maxa Technologies in Palo Alto, California – USA.
Psyche, full name 16 Psyche, is one of the asteroids orbiting between Mars and Jupiter, which telemetry shows to be particularly rich in metals.
There are studies that show it to be a giant lump of gold and platinum but there are also studies that indicate it may just be… a lump of iron and nickel.
Later, NASA leaned more towards the iron-nickel hypothesis, although the same space agency previously estimated that it was a gold treasure worth more than 10 trillion USD. Whatever it is, NASA is still very interested in conquering Psyche.
The key point lies in a study published in 2021 by Caltech (California Institute of Technology), in collaboration with JPL, showing that Psyche may be the lost “9th planet” of the solar system.
Psyche of the present – Photo: NASA
It was never fully formed, and Psyche is the metal planetary core left over from some unfortunate planetary evolution, most likely a massive collision with another planet while it was still young. too immature.
If this is true, Psyche will provide invaluable data about the “dawn” of the solar system and possibly how Earth and other planets formed.
According to NASA, the Psyche will fly to Mars orbit and then use the planet’s own gravity as an enhanced propulsion system, powering Psyche. The spacecraft is scheduled to make four concentric orbits around the asteroid, collecting data.
The craft will be equipped with several cameras, a gamma-ray neutron spectrometer that helps measure Psyche’s surface elemental composition, a magnetometer that helps detect any residual magnetic field – which could prove it should be. planet, even a large planet.
The Halifax thruster technology is five times more efficient than the normal rocket that will propel the Psyche into space, which will continue to operate on a solar array of five foldable panels.