September 26, 2022

"On Monday, NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test spacecraft, or DART, is set to collide with Dimorphos, a small asteroid..."

"... that is the moon of a larger space rock, Didymos. While these two near-Earth objects pose no immediate threat to our world, NASA launched DART last year to test a technique that could one day be used for planetary defense.... While the agency is searching the heavens for deadly space rocks, it also is developing methods for responding to a threat, should one emerge. The DART mission isn’t like the movie 'Armageddon.' Blowing up an asteroid generally would not be a good thing to do. Rather, the mission is a proof-of-principle demonstration that hitting an oncoming asteroid with a projectile can nudge it into a different orbit....."

15 comments:

Joe Smith said...

Hasn't anyone at NASA every played billiards?

Even the best players can't control what happens when the balls start colliding...

Jupiter said...

NASA is welfare for engineers.

rhhardin said...

You can also deflect a NASA dart with an asteroid

gilbar said...

Joe Smith said...
Hasn't anyone at NASA every played billiards?
Even the best players can't control what happens when the balls start colliding...

Don't Worry; WHEN this rock smashes into the earth, NASA will say: "OOPS!"

Beasts of England said...

Proud to have provided some analyses to the DART program, and Jupiter is just upset because his namesake is at perigee today. ;)

Kevin said...

Given the withdrawal from Afghanistan, imagine Biden's approval numbers if NASA deflects the asteroid INTO Earth's orbit.

Of course, like Afghanistan, the media would immediately blame it on Trump.

CJinPA said...

Seems like we should have a voter referendum on these things.
"You're going to what, now?"

Would be a nice distraction.

Joe Smith said...

"...imagine Biden's approval numbers if NASA deflects the asteroid INTO Earth's orbit."

Classic 'Women and minorities hardest hit.'

: )

Beasts of England said...

DART impact is at 6:14 (CT) and is streamed on NASA’s website.

Lem Former Twitter Aficionado said...

What if this nudging has a ripple effect and windup hitting something else and that in turn hits something that will eventually hit us?

Butterflies in space.

Andrew said...

Can we steer an asteroid to hit DC?

rehajm said...

They’ll fuck it up…do they have a plan when the rocks start clanking into each other and one is redirected toward Earth? Of course not…

Rusty said...

Joe Smith said...
"Hasn't anyone at NASA every played billiards?

Even the best players can't control what happens when the balls start colliding..."
But the game is to precisely hit the object ball with the cue ball to make it go exactly where they want it to go.
If things like billiard balls and asteroids perform according to Newtons third law of motion then the asteroid will move.

Curious George said...

"rehajm said...
They’ll fuck it up…do they have a plan when the rocks start clanking into each other and one is redirected toward Earth? Of course not…"

DART 2.0

Caroline said...

Fifty years from now this will be denounced as planetary imperialism, and all monuments, street names associated with the space program will be scrubbed.
But srsly. I like to play a little parlor game. What are some of the things we are doing right now that future generations will deplore? Mass vaccination comes to mind, also the age of Abortion Exhuberance will strike our children’s children as particularly malevolent, given the dire consequences of Demographic Winter that will dominate their daily existence. All the woke agenda, in fact, will eventually collapse from the weight of lies.
As for climate change. That, too, will be revised, in light of the famine its mitigation will impose. But Science marches on, its experts certain of their righteousness.