On Monday, a defence test conducted by NASA was successful as a “vending machine-sized spacecraft” collided with a football stadium-sized asteroid, which possesses no threat to Earth, named Dimorphos. This test was just a defence rehearsal for any kind of future asteroid attacks on Earth.
NASA Spacecraft Successfully Collided With Asteroid Dimorphos
Spacecraft blasted at the surface of a giant meteor 7 million miles away from home at a speed of 14,000 mph. This space accident was planned by NASA majorly to testify whether this impact can change the asteroid’s orbit or not.
Meanwhile, to witness this huge impact, happening millions of miles away from home, all the telescopes were pointed toward the sky. The photo ends with signals being ceased right after the impact. However, NASA will be able to analyse if the asteroid’s path was altered or not after a few days or even weeks.
NASA’s Mission To Alter The Path Of Asteroids
This small-scale spacecraft sacrificing mission, which cost ₹325 million, was the first for NASA in an attempt to change the orbit of any asteroid coming towards Earth.
“No, this is not a movie plot”, tweeted Bill Nelson, NASA Admin. “We’ve all seen it in movies like ‘Armageddon,’ but the real-life stakes are high,” said in a recorded video.
The pair of twin asteroids, one of which collided with the spacecraft, has been orbiting the Sun for aeons now and possesses no threat to Earth. From the start, they were the best candidates to test this mission.
Spacecraft named Dart or Double Asteroid Redirection Test was launched last November and equipped with a new and advanced navigation technology developed by Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Laboratory. And Dart’s navigating camera captured glimpses of football stadium size Dimorphism just an hour before the collision.
“Woo hoo”, “We’re seeing Dimorphos, so wonderful, wonderful,” said Elena Adams, System Engineer for Johns Hopkins Mission.
“The dinosaurs didn’t have a space program to help them know what was coming, but we do”, said Katherine Calvin, NASA’s senior climate adviser.