NASA crashed a spacecraft into an asteroid last year to try a new planet-defense method.
The Hubble Space Telescope captured the bright flare and asteroid plume after the impact:
Three Hubble data pictures. Two hours after impact, ejecta forms a 1,000-ton dust cone.
Didymos produces this cone after 17 hours. The third image shows sunlight creating an ejecta tail.
DART hit a binary asteroid system, according to Planetary Science Institute primary author Jian-Yang Li.
We've never witnessed a tandem asteroid system impact. Excessive. It'll take time.”
NASA analyses collisions. The agency said this technique altered Dimorphos' orbit.
If we spotted a half-mile-wide asteroid like Dimorphos in time, we could deflect it.
These discoveries help us reroute a dangerous asteroid to safeguard Earth.