Workers inside the Astrotech Space Operations Facility in Titusville, Florida, move the first half of the United Launch Alliance (ULA) payload fairing toward NASA’s Lucy spacecraft on Sept. 30, 2021
The payload fairing will encapsulate and protect the spacecraft during launch and ascent. Lucy is scheduled to launch no earlier than Saturday, Oct. 16, on a ULA Atlas V 401 rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. NASA’s Launch Services Program based at Kennedy Space Center is managing the launch.

Over its 12-year primary mission, Lucy will explore a record-breaking number of asteroids, flying by one asteroid in the solar system’s main belt and seven Trojan asteroids. Additionally, Lucy’s path will circle back to Earth three times for gravity assists, making it the first spacecraft ever to return to the vicinity of Earth from the outer solar system. Photo credit: NASA/Ben Smegelsky

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