After 10 months of traveling and stopping along the way to train with Jupiter’s moons, DART has finally accomplished the mission that departed last November 2021.. He managed to get to a binary system formed by asteroids. Didymos and Dimorphosto hit the last one later.

It was an experiment to show that a spacecraft like DART could change the trajectory of an asteroid heading for Earth in the future. There is an extensive list Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) which can put us in a stalemate when the time comes. Unlikely, but not impossible. Therefore, it is important to prepare without improvising.

the court, which streamed live on YouTube and NASA social media have been successful, although those responsible for the project still need to study the situation and draw their conclusions. You can relive the historic moment below:

DART collision success

Around 01:15, Spanish peninsula time (18:15 in Mexico) The 500-kilogram spacecraft collided, as planned, with Dimorphos.

It was programmed to first recognize asteroid Didymosmuch more with 780 meters in diameter. This way you can find your job faster. After taking that first step, he adjusted his trajectory to position himself in front of Dimorphos. The scientists of the project had no doubts about this second step. After all, they had previously tested it with Jupiter’s moons. However, they carefully followed every step until, once the position was corrected, the ship was able to launch against the second asteroid. This one is much smaller 160 meters in diameter.

So much DRACO camera the DART mission itself, such as found on board LICIAcubeThe Italian space agency was able to capture the moment of the fall.

Now it remains only for the scientists of the project to analyze their results. They are due to give a press conference at 02:00 Spanish Peninsular Time (19:00 in Mexico). Then we will know if, based on the first data, we can trust a spacecraft like DART to protect us in the future from those asteroids that do come close to Earth.

Source: Hiper Textual

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