A NASA spaceship struck an asteroid some 11 million kilometers away, in a bid to deflect its orbit. The mission goes on to become a historic test of humanity’s ability to protect a celestial object from devastating life on Earth. Celebrating this historic achievement, Google has come up with a very innovative creation. When a person types “NASA DART" on Google’s search box, the results crash with an animation of NASA spacecraft crashing onto the screen. It can be seen happening on top of your search text.
The animation ends in smoke, perfectly depicting a crash. Here are a few images:
Meanwhile, according to NASA, the Double Asteroid Redirection Test or DART impactor hit its target, the space rock Dimorphos, 10 months after blasting off from California on its pioneering mission. NASA livestreamed the entire process.
Dimorphos is a 160-meter asteroid - roughly comparable in size to an Egyptian pyramid – that orbits a half-mile long
big brother called Didymos. Never seen before, the “moonlet" appeared as a speck of light around an hour before the collision.
When the final image froze, NASA scientists and engineers erupted in joy and broke into an applause. The frozen image indicates that the signal had been lost and impact was successful.
While the twin asteroids don’t pose an actual threat to planet earth, NASA treated the mission as an experiment, deemed important to carry out, before an actual need for a similar mission.
The proof-of-concept has now made a reality of what has been attempted only in science fiction — notably in films like “Armageddon" and “Don’t Look Up."Very few of the billions of asteroids and comets in our solar system are considered potentially hazardous to our planet, and among those none are potentially expected in the next hundred years or so, but that said, it may happen if we wait long enough.
We know this from the geological record — for example, the six-mile wide Chicxulub asteroid struck Earth 66 million years ago, plunging the world into a long winter that led to the mass extinction of the dinosaurs along with 75 percent of all species.