NASA's Psyche Mission  for Asteroid Probes

Delay Also Changes Targets

The delay to visit what is

thought to be the exposed core of a protoplanet is upsetting for two small tag-along satellites to visit other asteroids

Psyche was planned to

launch on a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket on Aug. 1 but is now targeting a launch no earlier than Sept. 20

The Janus mission, which 

will fly two smallsats as secondary payloads on the Psyche launch, planned to cruise by two different binary asteroid systems

launch delay means the initial 

 flight plan is no longer possible The mission team is now assessing potential alternative space rocks to fly by

The target asteroids will

 be determined by the actual Psyche launch date, which as a rideshare Janus will have to accept, and constraints 

Janus is part of the 

NASA Small Innovative Missions for Planetary Exploration program for low-cost planetary science smallsat missions

Nasa's Perseverance Rover  Along for the Ride

on Mars Has a 'Pet Rock'