NASA’s Psyche mission launch delayed until at least 2023

NASA's plan to send a spacecraft called Psyche to an asteroid made of metal has hit a snag, so the launch won't happen until at least 2023.

The mission was supposed to launch this summer, with a launch window opening on August 1.

However, problems with the spacecraft's software mean that this launch window won't be possible now.

During testing in May, technical problems with the spacecraft were found. NASA confirmed that the planned launch would be pushed back to September 2022.

NASA has since said that the problem was caused by "a compatibility issue" with the testbed simulators for the software.

Now that the problem with the testbed has been fixed, there isn't enough time to do all the pre-launch testing that needs to be done before the launch window closes for this year.

"NASA takes its promises about how much its projects and programmes will cost and when they will be done very seriously,

said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. "We are looking at options for the mission in the context of

 the Discovery Program, and a decision about how to move forward will be made in the coming months."


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