Last September, NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) spacecraft smashed into an asteroid, deliberately altering the rock’s trajectory through space in a first test of planetary defence.
Now scientists have deconstructed the collision and its aftermath — and learnt just how successful humanity’s punch at the cosmos really was.DART, which was the size of a golf cart, collided with a Great Pyramid-sized asteroid called Dimorphos. The impact caused the asteroid’s orbit around another space rock to shrink — Dimorphos now completes an orbit 33 minutes faster than before the impact, researchers report1 today in Nature. This means that if a dangerous asteroid were ever detected heading for Earth, a mission to smash into it would probably be able to divert it away from the planet.
Source: Asteroid lost 1 million kilograms after collision with DART spacecraft
1 thought on “Asteroid lost 1 million kilograms after collision with DART spacecraft”
@IronWynch wow, that’s pretty amazing.