Smashing Into Asteroids: NASA's DART Mission

Mar 12, 2022

10:00am – 11:00am CT

While there is no imminent asteroid threat to our planet for the next century, in fall 2022, Earth takes the first step toward addressing this possibility with the Double Asteroid Redirection Test, NASA's first mission to demonstrate a planetary defense technique. The target? A small moonlet in the binary asteroid system Didymos. In a scenario ripped from Hollywood blockbusters, experts will direct an autonomous spacecraft into an asteroid, and measure its orbital change using powerful telescopes on Earth. Developed and managed by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory for NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office, DART is a carefully planned experiment set to determine if kinetic impactor technology could be a reliable deflection method in case we ever need it in the future.

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photo of Elena Adams
Elena Adams

Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL)

photo of Nancy Chabot
Nancy Chabot

Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL)

photo of Andy Rivkin
Andy Rivkin

Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL)

photo of Thomas Statler
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