DART Spacecraft Set to Hit Asteroid in Planetary Protection Test in 2 Weeks, NASA Says

CC0 / urikyo33 / asteroidAsteroid
Asteroid - Sputnik International, 1920, 12.09.2022
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART), the world’s first mission to test technology for defending Earth against potential asteroid or comet hazards, will impact its target asteroid Dimorphos on September 26, NASA and Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) mission planners told a press conference on Monday.

"While DART's target asteroid is not a threat to our planet, this test will see if asteroid deflection using a kinetic impactor spacecraft is a viable way to respond to a future asteroid on a collision course with earth should one ever be discovered," NASA Science Mission Directorate Associate Administrator Thomas Zurbuchen said.

Dart is a first of its kind spacecraft that will automatically navigate to a target asteroid and intentionally collide with it to change the asteroid's motion in a way that can be measured using ground-based telescopes, Zurbuchen said.

"For the first time we will measurably change the orbit of a celestial body in the universe. Doing so has clear benefits in ensuring humanity's ability to deflect any potential threatening asteroid in the future," APL Director Bobby Brown told reporters.

DART will provide important data to help better prepare for an asteroid that might pose an impact hazard to Earth, should one ever be discovered, NASA said in a statement.
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала