This is the first time in human history that an attempt has been made to change the direction of a sky. Scientists describe it as the first planetary protection effort of its kind.
NASA has released images of a satellite attracting an asteroid recorded last Monday, which was directed by the space agency to divert its orbit. Scientists called the event the first such planetary protection effort.
Photographs were taken by the Hubble and James Webb Space Telescopes. According to official information, NASA’s DART space probe collided at high speed (6.4 kilometers per second) with the asteroid Dimorphos, 7 million miles from Earth.
This is the first time in human history that an attempt has been made to change the direction of a sky. NASA explains that it will have to wait days or even weeks to see if the unmanned spacecraft is able to slightly alter the asteroid’s orbit.
DART is about the size of a vending machine and cost more than $330 million to build. Dimorphos, meanwhile, is a space body about 160 kilometers in diameter similar to the Moon, and it orbits another large asteroid called Didymos, 780 meters in diameter and whose name means “twin” in Greek.
“This is an unprecedented display of an unprecedented event,” said Johns Hopkins University astronomer and mission leader Andy Rivkin.
According to scientists, the demorphose, which was chosen because it did not represent a danger to the Earth, ended with a “significant crater”, however, the change in its trajectory will not be known until November.