The spacecraft is off to explore Jupiter’s ancient Trojan asteroids.
Xinhua News Agency/Xinhua News Agency/Getty Images
At the crack of dawn on October 16, NASA launched its latest mission: Lucy.
After a successful launch, the spacecraft set off for its ambitious mission to Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids.
It will explore a range of targets over the next 12 years.
Jonathan North via NASA Conceptual Image Lab
Lucy will be the first mission to visit the Trojans — a notably old and mysterious system of rocks orbiting alongside Jupiter.
The Trojans are some of the most ancient objects in the Solar System.
And if all goes to plan, Lucy’s exploration will give us new data about the primordial days when the planets first formed.
Here’s a recap of Lucy’s launch, in 9 images and videos:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Here’s everything you need to know about the mission.