NASA confirmed that the DART probe had changed the orbit of the Dimorph asteroid

NASA confirmed that the DART probe had changed the orbit of the Dimorph asteroid

An analysis of the data obtained by the Double Asteroid Direction Test mission team, which conducted a space probe attack on the Dimorph asteroid, showed that the grounders managed to alter the orbit of the celestial body. This is a turning point in the history of planetary protection, and the experiment was successfully conducted under real conditions on a fairly large celestial body.

Before the impact on the asteroid by DART, the Dymorph orbital period around the larger body, Didima, was 11 hours and 55 minutes. Since the impact on 27 September, scientists around the world have been tracking how the speed has changed. If it was originally planned to change the time of circulation by at least 73 seconds, it has now become clear that the period has changed by 32 minutes, from 11 hours and 55 minutes to 11 hours and 23 minutes. In other words, the target has been exceeded by more than 25 times.

New data are available daily, and in time astronomers will be able to better assess how to protect the Earth from asteroid impact if hazardous objects are detected in advance. The research team is still requesting and receiving data from ground-based observations from around the world, increasing the accuracy of measurements.

Now we have to figure out how much DART's mission has helped with the release of fragments and dust after the impact, and it's believed to have significantly increased the effect -- the air coming out of the balloon is about to push it forward.

For analysis, scientists will continue to study the crash scene images from various countries, and approximately four years later, the European Space Agency's Hero Project is planning to conduct a detailed "inspection" of Dimorph and his larger satellite, Didim, with special attention to the crater left after the DART crash and the accurate measurement of the mass of Dimorph.

The DART probe, with a mass of 570 kg and the size of a golf car, crashed into the asteroid Dimorph at 02:14 Moscow time on 27 September. At the time of the impact, the probe had a velocity of 22,530 km/h. The asteroid itself was about 160 m in cross-section, the composition of the rock is specified. It is worth noting that neither Dimoref nor Didim, according to scientific estimates, pose a threat to the Earth now, nor had they previously represented it, the experiment was conducted with scientific goals.