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The DART mission ship successfully deflected the asteroid Dimorphos: “It’s a great success” – BX1

NASA confirmed on Tuesday that the “Double Asteroid Redirection Test” or DART (dart) mission was a success.

On September 26, NASA announced that a spacecraft from the DART mission managed to touch the asteroid Dimorphos, a moon 160 meters in diameter. The goal was to deflect its trajectory, a test for future plans to defend the planet against this type of threat. After analysis, NASA confirmed on Tuesday that the mission was a success: the spacecraft managed to reduce the orbit of the asteroid by 32 minutes.

For Özgür Karatekin, scientist at the Royal Observatory of Belgium, who participated in this mission thanks to the support of digital models in particular, this announcement is good news: “The change in orbit is much larger than we had estimated. These results show that it was more effective than expected. It is a great success!”he explains in Le 12h30. “We will now include this information in our models. We did not know the reaction of this asteroid, because we have never been able to carry out this type of test in the past”.

■ Interview conducted by Camille Paillaud in The 12:30 p.m.