An American spaceship successfully collided with the Dimorphos asteroid at 1:14 am last night. It happened because the accident was completely on purpose. It is part of an experiment broadcast live by the space agency NASA.
Dimorphos, the space rock that was hit 11 million kilometers from Earth, posed no danger to our planet. NASA wants to use the experiment to see if it is possible to push an asteroid out of orbit across the universe. This could prevent such a rock from threatening the earth and humanity in the distant future.
And so last night a space probe flew over the asteroid at a speed of 6 kilometers per second. The last few meters could still be followed live just before impact. A camera took photos from the spacecraft up to seconds before the collision, which were broadcast by NASA.
The last image of the spacecraft just before the collision with the asteroid.
The experiment can give the world a chance to protect itself
Scientists who worked on the mission for years held their breath as the spacecraft got closer and closer to its target. The chosen route turned out to be the right one, because a few moments later the spacecraft crashed into the asteroid. “What a moment,” the NASA livestream commentator said as employees cheered and hugged.
“Now the science begins,” Lori Glaze said with great enthusiasm. She researches planets for NASA and called tonight’s mission a huge breakthrough. “We are entering a new era where we may have the opportunity to protect ourselves from something like a dangerous asteroid impact.”
To further explore these possibilities, a new mission is now starting WAS is called. In it, a spacecraft will travel to the asteroid Didymos in 2024. Whether the impact affected the asteroid’s orbit is being investigated. The first results have yet to be seen. The spacecraft will not arrive in Didymos until 2026.