Prelaunch Briefings Set for NASA’s Lucy Mission

The Lucy mission patch.NASA will provide coverage of upcoming prelaunch and launch activities for Lucy, the agency’s first mission to explore the Jupiter Trojan asteroids.

Lucy is targeted to launch at 5:34 a.m. EDT Saturday, Oct. 16, on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V 401 rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. NASA’s Launch Services Program, based at Kennedy Space Center, America’s premier multi-user spaceport, is managing the launch.

Live launch coverage will begin at 5 a.m. EDT on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website. NASA will hold a prelaunch briefing Wednesday, Oct. 13, followed by science and engineering briefings Oct. 14.

Over its 12-year primary mission, Lucy will explore a record-breaking number of asteroids. The spacecraft will fly by one asteroid in the solar system’s main belt and seven Trojan asteroids. Lucy’s path will circle back to Earth three times for gravity assists, which will make it the first spacecraft to return to our planet’s vicinity from the outer solar system.

Prelaunch briefings:

Wednesday, Oct. 13
1 p.m.: Lucy prelaunch news conference with the following participants:

  • Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator, NASA’s Science Mission Directorate at the agency’s Headquarters in Washington.
  • Hal Levison, Lucy principal investigator, Southwest Research Institute.
  • Donya Douglas-Bradshaw, Lucy project manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.
  • John Elbon, Chief Operating Officer, United Launch Alliance.
  • Jessica Williams, 45th Weather Squadron, Space Launch Delta 45, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.
  • Omar Baez, Lucy Launch Director, NASA’s Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Thursday, Oct. 14
1 p.m.: Lucy science briefing with the following participants:

  • Adriana Ocampo, Lucy program executive, NASA Headquarters.
  • Cathy Olkin, Lucy deputy principal investigator, Southwest Research Institute.
  • Keith Noll, Lucy project scientist, Goddard.
  • Hal Weaver, principal investigator for Lucy’s L’LORRI instrument, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.
  • Phil Christensen, principal investigator for Lucy’s L’TES instrument, Arizona State University.
  • Dennis Reuter, principal investigator for Lucy’s L’Ralph instrument, Goddard.

3 p.m.: Lucy engineering briefing with the following participants:

  • Joan Salute, associate director for flight programs, Planetary Science Division, NASA Headquarters.
  • Jessica Lounsbury, Lucy project systems engineer, Goddard.
  • Katie Oakman, Lucy structures and mechanisms lead, Lockheed Martin Space.
  • Coralie Adam, deputy navigation team chief, KinetX Aerospace.

Friday, Oct. 15
3:30 p.m.: NASA Science Live with the following participants:

  • Carly Howett, assistant director of the Department of Space Studies, Southwest Research Institute.
  • Wil Santiago, deep space exploration engineer, Lockheed Martin Space.
  • Donya Douglas-Bradshaw, Lucy project manager, Goddard.
  • Brittine Young, mentor for the NASA Lucy L’SPACE academy.
  • Wilbert Ruperto, ambassador for the NASA Lucy L’SPACE academy.

This episode will air live on NASA Television at and stream live on the agency’s Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels. Members of the public can participate live by sending questions using #askNASA or posting a comment in the live video chat stream.

For more information on Lucy, visit