By Peter Lord, David Oh, and Steven Scott as told to Danya Gainor

As the Psyche spacecraft transitions into its ATLO (assembly, test, launch, and operations) phase, the recent arrival of the solar electric propulsion (SEP) chassis to JPL brings to mind a novel (and somewhat radical) choice we made early on to have a commercial company, Maxar Technologies, build the SEP chassis, but have JPL build the main computer and software that control the spacecraft. The choice of spacecraft provider is an important and high stakes decision made in the early phases of mission development. The choice to split…

David Oh

Lead Project Systems Engineer for “Psyche:Journey to a Metal World” at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA

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