“An ant hit two buses”: Hitting an asteroid with a DART probe had an unexpected result 21:24

An international team of scientists from Switzerland, Japan, the United States and other countries studied the results of NASA’s mission to deflect asteroid Dimorph using a special DART probe impactor. It turned out that the device not only moved the space rock from its original course, but also changed its shape. The study was published in the scientific journal magazine Nature Astronomy (NatAstro).

According to experts, the mass of the DART probe was 580 kilograms, and the weight of Dimorph was approximately 5 million tons. The collision of objects with such mass differences can be compared to an ant hitting two buses at the same time. However, in this case, the ant was moving at a speed of 6 kilometers per second and its impact had a noticeable effect.

Modeling showed that DART removed approximately 20 thousand tons of rock and other materials from Dimorph at the time of impact. The recoil from the collision with the ship slowed the asteroid and increased its orbital time around the asteroid moon Didymos by 30 minutes.

DART’s encounter with Dimorph also provided insight into the structure of the object. It turns out that the asteroid has a rather weak structure and consists of loose debris.

Scientists noted that the ease of extracting material from such asteroids using the impact method could attract the attention of companies planning to mine in space in the future.

happened before knownHe said the Dimorph asteroid gained a second tail after its collision with the DART probe.

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Source: Gazeta

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