DART Impact Success
Produced by the Space Telescope Science Institute’s Office of Public Outreach in collaboration with NASA’s Universe of Learning partners: Caltech/IPAC, Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian, and NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
· Zoom in from space to Yucatan peninsula in Central America: Google Earth
· DART final approach to asteroid Dimorphos: NASA/Johns Hopkins APL
· Animation of impact and altered orbit: NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Jon Emmerich
· Hubble images post DART impact: NASA, ESA, Jian-Yang Li (PSI). Image processing: Alyssa Pagan (STScI)
· Images post DART impact from Italian Space Agency’s LICIACube: ASI/NASA
Writer: Leah Ramsay
Designer: Leah Hustak, Joseph Olmsted
Science review: Dr. Chris Britt
Education review: Jim Manning
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A line moves across images of space towards the title text.
Text, News from the Universe.
Dart impact success. October 4, 2022.
Sixty-six million years ago, Earth suffered a devastating asteroid impact off the coast of the Yucatan peninsula.
On September 26, 2022, NASA successfully impacted the asteroid Dimorphos, part of humanity's first planetary defense technology demonstration.
NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (Dart) is the agency's first attempt to move an asteroid in space. It was only a test, as there is no threat to Earth.
Dimorphos is a small moonlet that orbits a larger asteroid, Didymos. Navigating to hit the small target was the first step.
Next astronomers will measure how the smaller asteroid's path was affected by DART's impact.
Four years from now, the European Space Agency's Hera mission will visit and follow up on both asteroids, especially the crater left by DART.
"This demonstrates we are no longer powerless to prevent this type of natural disaster," said Lindley Johnson, NASA's Planetary Defense Officer.
This news was brought to you in part by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland.