NASA has once again made history, and in a way that will impact every man and woman on this planet.
In the first ever test of an anti-asteroid deflection device, NASA’s DART spacecraft has slammed into a space rock named Dimorphos, hoping to smack the celestial stone off-course.
The feat was akin to hitting a bullet with a bullet from nearly 7 million miles away…and the whole thing was captured on camera.
NASA’s DART spacecraft successfully slammed into a distant asteroid at hypersonic speed on Monday in the world’s first test of a planetary defense system, designed to prevent a potential doomsday meteorite collision with Earth.
Humanity’s first attempt to alter the motion of an asteroid or any celestial body played out in a NASA webcast from the mission operations center outside Washington, D.C., 10 months after DART was launched.
The livestream showed images taken by DART’s camera as the cube-shaped “impactor” vehicle, no bigger than a vending machine with two rectangular solar arrays, streaked into the asteroid Dimorphos, about the size of a football stadium, at 7:14 p.m. EDT (2314 GMT) some 6.8 million miles (11 million km) from Earth.
NASA may not be able to tell for weeks, (or months), whether or not Dimorphos’ path has been altered, but with DART traveling at 14,000mph at the time of impact, it’s difficult to suggest that nothing changed.
Video of the wild moment can be seen below:
Footage of DART hitting Dimorphos! pic.twitter.com/pUfTAVhdb6
— Astro Alexandra 🪐 Space Communicator (@astro_alexandra) September 26, 2022