NASA’s Dart probe impacted the asteroid Dimorphos, representing a real turning point for the defense of the planet from threats
By: VirgilioNotizie | Posted on:
In the night between 26 and 27 September, science has taken another fundamental step in progress, in terms of defense of the planet. There space probe Dart – acronym for Double Asteroid Redirection Test – centered live video the asteroid Dimorphosjust like a dart, or the Italian translation of the word itself.
The Dart probe: the test to protect the planet from potentially dangerous space debris
The launch of the probe is part of a NASA test to measure our planet’s ability to defend itself from any threats from space, such as potentially dangerous asteroids. The impact with Dimorphos, in fact, diverted its trajectory, thus sanctioning the success of the test.
Live video of the impact
At 1.15 am, Italian time, NASA technicians witnessed live the impact between the probe and the asteroid, which occurred 9.6 million kilometers from the planet, rejoicing in the success of the operation. Here is the video of the impact from the Nasa Twitter account:
IMPACT SUCCESS! Watch from #DARTMIssion‘s DRACO Camera, as the vending machine-sized spacecraft successfully collides with asteroid Dimorphos, which is the size of a football stadium and poses no threat to Earth. pic.twitter.com/7bXipPkjWD
– NASA (@NASA) September 26, 2022
The video shows the exact moment when the probe, equipped with a camera, crashes into the space debris, returning a clear and detailed image of the rocky surface.
The asteroid was spotted an hour before impact, and slowly transformed from a white dot to a well-defined object. The Dart probe hit the asteroid at a speed of 22,500 kilometers per hour.
Why the success of Operation Dart is so important to the planet
What does all this mean? It means that if the Earth is threatened by an approaching asteroid, we will have the tools to change its direction and thus protect the surface of the planet from any potentially catastrophic impacts.
The satisfaction of NASA
NASA administrator Bill Nelson tweeted: “This is not a movie plot. The Dart mission is the first mission in the world to test the technology to defend the Earth from potential dangers from asteroids or comets! ”.
On the NASA website you can read the words of Lindley Johnson, planetary defense officer of the aerospace agency: “The success of Dart provides a significant addition to the essential toolbox we must have to protect the Earth from the devastating impact of an asteroid “.
“This shows that we are no longer unable to prevent this type of natural disaster. Along with improved capabilities to accelerate our next planetary defense mission’s search for the remaining population of dangerous asteroids, the Near-Earth Object (NEO) Surveyor, a successor to Dart, could provide what we need to save the day“, Specified the expert.
What would happen if an asteroid crashed into Earth
If a large asteroid were to unfortunately crashing to the surface of the planetthe consequences would be terrible, considering that one of the most accredited hypotheses on the extinction of the dinosaurs is precisely the one concerning the impact of a huge meteorite.