NASA has knocked an asteroid out of orbit for the first time in space history. The DART planetary defense test mission was a resounding success.
Washington – The NASA maneuver could be the plot of a Hollywood film: To protect the earth from an asteroid, a spacecraft collides with the celestial body. What sounds like science fiction is reality. The US space agency NASA and the European Space Agency ESA are working intensively on asteroid defence.
Historic success in space: NASA deflects asteroid
And now, for the first time, NASA has managed to change Dimorphos’ orbit around the asteroid Didymos by crashing a $300 million spacecraft.
The DART mission (DART stands for Double Asteroid Redirection Test) was a complete success. After the impact, the orbit of the asteroid Dimorphos changed. “A 32-minute orbital change!” writes ESA on Twitter.
Asteroid deflected from orbit: NASA’s DART mission
- Impact on the asteroid Dimorphos : The spacecraft collided with the asteroid on September 27, 2022 at 7:14 p.m. EDT at 24,000 km/h.
- Nasa deflects asteroid Dimorphos : After the collision, the orbit of the asteroid Dimorphos changes by 4 percent. ESA announced this on September 11th. The time for an orbit before the impact of the “Dart” probe was 11:55 hours. After the impact, a time of 11:23 hours was measured.
NASA Astroid Defense Mission: Turning Point in Protecting Humanity
Important notice from NASA: The Dart mission is a test. There are currently no asteroids on a collision course with our planet. The asteroid Diprohos also poses no threat to Earth.
Nasa has proven that we take defending the planet seriously
“This mission shows that Nasa is trying to be prepared for whatever the universe throws at us. NASA has proven that we take defending the planet seriously,” said NASA chief Bill Nelson. He called the mission’s success a “watershed moment” in protecting humanity from an asteroid impact. The asteroid collision will keep space explorers busy for a long time.
“The Dart team continues to work on this rich dataset to fully understand this first planetary defense test of asteroid deflection,” said mission director Nancy Chabot. In 2024, the “Hera” mission of the European Space Agency ESA is to start for even more detailed research. The German Aerospace Center (DLR) is significantly involved in the mission. The “Hera” probe will be used to analyze the nature of Dimorphos and the effects of the impact.
Recently, the research vehicle “Perseverance” detected remnants of life on Mars. NASA is over the moon. NASA’s moon mission, on the other hand, is overshadowed by problems. (ml)