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National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is readying its first mission to deflect an asteroid, a move that is likely to help the space agency to understand how Earth can be defended from a planet-destroying impact.

תוצאת תמונה עבור ‪US NASA readies to deflect Didmyos asteroid to defend Earth‬‏

The spacecraft for the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) is now moving to the design phase, Sky News reported Monday.

 

Further the DART aims to display the "kinetic impactor technique" in which it will strike an asteroid and physically knock it into a different flight path.

 

The Didymos asteroid is being targeted because it is an asteroid binary system which consists of two bodies orbiting each other as well as the Sun.

Didymos A is the larger body, and is about a half mile across (780 metres) with the smaller body, Didymos B, being only 530 feet across (160 metres).

DART would fly to Didymos and use an on-board autonomous targeting system to aim itself at the smaller body. The size of a refrigerator, the spacecraft would then strike Didymos B at about nine times the speed of a bullet or 3.7 miles per second (6km per second).

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