The CAPSTONE mission, short for
"Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment," will now launch no earlier than June 6
NASA officials says
"We will continually evaluate the date for the first target launch attempt within the launch period, which extends to June 22,"
This is the second
recent delay for the mission, which was most recently targeted for May 31.
spacecraft is scheduled to launch from New Zealand aboard a Rocket Lab Electron rocket with a Lunar Photon upper stage.
Once it gets to space,
CAPSTONE will settle into a near rectilinear halo orbit (NRHO) around the moon, the same orbit that will be used by NASA's forthcoming Gateway space station.
CAPSTONE plans to
swing to within 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) of the lunar south pole at its closest approach.