DART mission: when and how to see the crash of the NASA spacecraft against the asteroid Dimorphos?

The DART Mission will be on Monday, September 26 | Photo: NASA

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (POT) predicts that it will take up to 100 years before an asteroid passes close to Earth. Land; however, it will carry out dart mission the next monday september 26 to be prepared in case it is necessary to protect the planet from an unexpected impact.

A small asteroid called Dimorphos will be the “test subject” for the dart missionbecause it will receive the impact of humanity’s first test for planetary defense, to see if it is possible to change the course of an asteroid in the event that a celestial object is heading dangerously towards Earth. Land.

What is the DART Mission and when to watch it?

According to NASA, the dart mission was launched on Wednesday, November 24, 2021 on a rocket SpaceX Falcon 9 from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California. The goal was to reach the Didymos binary asteroid system in the fall of this year and the impact will be the September 26.

  • When to see the impact of DART with Dimorphos? Monday September 26
  • Where to see the mission? NASA Live Channel
  • What time does the broadcast start? 5:00 p.m. (Central Mexico time)
  • What time is the impact estimated? At 18:14 according to NASA

The space agency’s programming will also offer a previous live at 16:30 pm, and at 19:00 pm there will be a press briefing after the impact. In this presentation the results will be reviewed in a preliminary way and the first conclusions will be given.

  • dart It is part of a new concept in spacecraft that are much smaller, more focused and faster to perform. POT about the redirect test double asteroids.

How will they carry out the impact on the asteroid?

so that the dart mission is considered a success, you must divert the course of the asteroid DimorphosTo achieve this, the main challenge will be differentiating between its impact target and the larger parent asteroid, Didymos.

Thanks to the reconnaissance camera and asteroids Didymos for optical navigation (DRACO) and a sophisticated set of algorithms called SMART Nav, will identify Dimorphos to impact kinetically at a speed of 24 thousand 140 kilometers per hour, which will change the amount of time it takes to orbit the large asteroid.

  • This change over time will be measured through an international observation campaign and will be key to demonstrating that the deviation of the asteroid through kinetic impact.

On September 20, the POT reported a series of tests on Europa, the moon of Jupiter, so that DRACO could capture clearer images. This is a high resolution camera inspired by the spacecraft imager New Horizons which returned the first close-up images of the system Pluto.

The dart satellite It also sports innovative deployable solar panels, a state-of-the-art propulsion system, and navigation that allows it to locate a small object in space, such as a asteroidand hit it even if it moves at thousands of kilometers per hour.

DART mission: is the asteroid a danger to humanity?

According to the POTthe asteroid Dimorphosjust like him Didymosdoes not entail a latent danger for humanity, but the dart mission It is only a test to be warned in the event that an unexpected celestial body approaches the orbit of the orbit in danger. Land.

“If detected far enough from Earth, even a tiny change that alters an asteroid’s trajectory could make the difference between an asteroid hitting our planet and avoiding it altogether.”


The POT Consider any near-Earth object to be “potentially dangerous” if it is within 0.05 astronomical units (that is, less than 7 million 500 thousand kilometers) and measures more than 140 meters in diameter. have been cataloged more than 27 thousand asteroids near Earth, but none currently represent a danger to our planet.

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