NASA Issues Update on Lucy Spacecraft and Its Solar Array Problem

Lucy Deployment

NASA’s Lucy spacecraft deploying its solar arrays. Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

Lucy Spacecraft Healthy as NASA Continues Solar Array Assessments

NASA’s Lucy spacecraft successfully transitioned to cruise mode on October 20, which is the standard configuration for flight. The following day, the instrument pointing platform was deployed after temporarily being postponed earlier in the week. Both events were normal and raised no concerns. The spacecraft remains stable, power positive, with all other subsystems working, with the exception of one solar array.

The Lucy team is working to understand the current state of the array before attempting to complete deployment. NASA is reviewing spacecraft data, including using techniques to measure how much electric current is produced by the array during various spacecraft positions and attitudes. This will allow the team to understand how close the array is to the latched position. These techniques are well within the capabilities of the system and pose no risk. Any plans for re-deployment will be considered after completing this latest assessment.

The spacecraft continues to travel along its expected trajectory – track its path online.

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