Asteroid Dimorphos in which NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed into is now a COMET with a TAIL

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Three days ago, NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed into asteroid Dimorphos at 14,000 mph.

The dramatic impact expelled a cloud of dust and turned the asteroid into a type of comet.

Dimorphos now has a tail,” reports Ernesto Guido who photographed the structure during the early hours of Sept. 28th:

ASTEROID DIMORPHOS NOW HAS A TAIL
ASTEROID DIMORPHOS NOW HAS A TAIL

This shows the asteroid about 29 hours after impact,” says Guido, who used a remotely-controlled 0.61-m telescope in El Sauce, Chile. “It developed a beautiful narrow tail 80 arcseconds long.

When NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed into asteroid Dimorphos on Sept. 26th, almost every telescope in the Solar System was watching. Here is what Hubble saw:

hubble DART impact
hubble DART impact. Credit: NASA, ESA, Jian-Yang Li (PSI); animation: Alyssa Pagan (STScI)

In these visible-light images, the asteroid tripled in brightness after DART struck. The glow remained steady for more than eight hours after impact.

Oh, and Webb saw it too.

WEBB DART impact
WEBB DART impact. Credit: NASA, ESA, CSA, Cristina Thomas (Northern Arizona University), Ian Wong (NASA-GSFC); Joseph DePasquale (STScI)

Real of fake? Fail or success? [SpaceWeather, NASA]

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12 Comments

  1. Asteroid Dimorphos in which NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed into is now a COMET with a TAIL.

    Asteroid Dimorphos which NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed into is now a COMET with a TAIL..

    Or

    Asteroid Dimorphos into which NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed is now a COMET with a TAIL.

    But not

    Asteroid Dimorphos in which NASA’s DART spacecraft slammed into is now a COMET with a TAIL.

  2. IIRC, the reason for this time and money waster of a mission was to determine if a space rock could be nudged off its trajectory to potentially protect and save the earth from an extinction event. Well, so far we have some pretty pictures but was the experiment a success? Did the rock get nudged? I took university physics over 40 years ago, but I still remember elastic and I elastic collisions. The spacecraft would have had to be massively massive to even begin to cause more than a minor rock-quake, let alone move it off of its trajectory. For now, while I applaud the precise target shooting, I doubt that the spacecraft had any effect. Excuse me while I go flush a fistful of dollar bills into my septic tank in honor of this event…

  3. I used the Muzzle Energy Computer to get the impact energy …
    BIG ASS NUMBER…ready?
    547,368,357,271,421 give or take a few billion ft pds.

  4. They musta crashed right into a Lemming. Or perhaps an eagle or walrus bone. Perhaps they hit that photo of a desert in Egypt with red filter applied.

    Asteroids come from Mars don’t you know.

    Never trust the Nassholes (george carlin)

  5. So where is this new comet going? What’s it’s new orbit? Will it hit us? The moon? 🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️

  6. My favorite visual in this article is the orange-colored .gif at the bottom.

    It’s nice that they went from using CGI of a potato to using “actual” imagery…

    …of a 3-LED flashlight from the tool section at Home Depot.

    NASA is definitely upping their game with this one! (sarcasm)

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