The launch of TESS, the last mission of NASA to discover new worlds, has been delayed 48 hours due to a problem with the rocket must carry the satellite into space a Space X Falcon 9 was scheduled to set sail early this morning 00.32 (Peninsular time) from Cape Canaveral and as announced by the American Space Agency is expected to do so on Wednesday.
Standing down today to conduct additional GNC analysis, and teams are now working towards a targeted launch of @NASA_TESS on Wednesday, April 18.
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 16, 2018
“We are retiring today to carry out additional guidance, navigation, and control systems analyze, and the teams are working for the launch of TESS on Wednesday, April 18,” Elon Musk’s company announced in a Twitter message.
For its part, NASA wanted to make it clear that the satellite is “in excellent condition” and that it remains “ready” for launch in two days.
TESS is designed to search for planets that orbit stars relatively close to the Sun. The mission is expected to discover thousands of new worlds during the two years of the primary mission, according to TESS team members.
Some of the findings they will make will be close enough to Earth to characterize them in detail using other telescopes, such as the spacecraft Hubble and James Webb, when it launches in May 2020. This telescope could also identify possible bioforms, such as oxygen and Methane in the atmosphere of at least some of the worlds discovered by TESS, according to NASA.
This mission takes over from Kepler, the hitherto prolific exotic hunt, which has discovered 2650 new exoplanets to date, accounting for 70% of all planets of this type that are known. After nine years of the mission, Kepler is running out of fuel and will stop working.
Like Kepler, TESS will use the method of transits to try to find planets, trying to notice the small changes in brightness caused by those distant worlds when they pass in front of their stars from the perspective of the telescope. However, unlike Kepler, which surrounds the Sun, TESS will complete a return to Earth every 13.7 days