Double Asteroid Redirection Test

The Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) is a NASA space mission aimed at testing a method of planetary defense against near-Earth objects (NEOs). In September 2022, a space probe is set to deliberately crash into the minor-planet moon Dimorphos of the double asteroid Didymos to assess the future potential of a spacecraft impact to deflect an asteroid on a collision course with Earth through a transference of momentum.

Double Asteroid Redirection Test
The DART impactor and CubeSat just before impact with Dimorphos (illustration)
Mission typePlanetary defense mission
OperatorNASA  / APL
COSPAR ID2021-110A
SATCAT no.49497
Mission duration11 months (planned),
12 days and 10 hours (in progress)
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft typeDouble Asteroid Redirection Test
ManufacturerApplied Physics Laboratory
of Johns Hopkins University
Launch massDART: 610 kg (1,340 lb),
LICIACube: 14 kg (31 lb)
DimensionsDART: 1.8 × 1.9 × 2.6 m (5 ft 11 in × 6 ft 3 in × 8 ft 6 in)
ROSA: 8.5 × 2.4 m (27.9 × 7.9 ft) (each)
Power6.6 kW
Start of mission
Launch date24 November 2021, 06:21:02 UTC
RocketFalcon 9 Block 5, B1063.3
Launch siteVandenberg, SLC-4E
Dimorphos impactor
Impact date26 September 2022 (planned)
Didymos Reconnaissance and Asteroid Camera for Optical navigation (DRACO)

DART mission patch  
DART in launch configuration

DART is a joint project between NASA and the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL). It is being administered by NASA's Planetary Defense Coordination Office, and several NASA laboratories and offices are providing technical support. International partners, such as the space agencies of European Space Agency (ESA), Italian Space Agency (ASI), and JAXA Japan, are contributing to related or subsequent projects. In August 2018, NASA approved the project to start the final design and assembly phase. The DART spacecraft was successfully launched on 24 November 2021, with collision slated for 26 September 2022 to 2 October 2022.[1][2]

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