An in-progress mission will have NASA intentionally slam a spacecraft into an asteroid. DART, which is short for Double Asteroid Redirection Test, has located the double-asteroid system called Didymos. DART will be lined up to autonomously navigate towards Dimorphos, Didymos’s moonlet, and crash into it on September 26, 2022, to test its ability to redirect the asteroid.
Sights are set!— NASA (@NASA) September 7, 2022
Our #DARTmission got its first look at the Didymos double-asteroid system, which poses no threat to Earth. On Sept. 26, DART will intentionally crash into Dimorphos to change its path as part of the world’s first planetary defense test: https://t.co/K8mlNIgLVB pic.twitter.com/VLt3McfcIc
Didymos poses no threat to Earth. It was identified as a sufficient testing ground to see if DART’s redirection method is viable for potential future threats. DART will be the first test of using a spacecraft to deflect an asteroid. The mission was developed by Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in coordination with many other agencies and partners. DART was launched in November 2021 on a SpaceX rocket. You can learn more about the mission here.
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