On Sept. 26 2022, NASA will intentionally smash the DART spacecraft into an asteroid as humanity’s first test mission for planetary defense. The Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) spacecraft’s collision with its target asteroid, which poses no threat to Earth, will change the asteroid’s motion in a way that can be measured using ground-based telescopes, including those of Las Cumbres Observatory (LCO). The test will show that a spacecraft can navigate itself to a target asteroid and intentionally collide with it, providing valuable data to help us better prepare for a future asteroid that might pose an impact hazard to the Earth, should we someday discover one.
In this public talk, Dr. Tim Lister, DART Investigation Team member and LCO astronomer, will describe near-Earth asteroids, impact hazards, and what the DART mission will do to prepare for potentially deflecting asteroids in the future.
Las Cumbres Observatory is pleased to present a series of free public talks featuring leading scientists speaking about exciting new discoveries in astronomy.
Everyone is welcome to these events.