NASA Is Launching the World's First Planetary Defense Test
NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART), the world’s first mission to test technology for defending Earth against potential asteroid or comet hazards, will impact its target asteroid—which poses no threat to Earth—at 7:14 p.m. EDT on Monday, Sept. 26.
Among other activities, NASA will host a televised briefing beginning at 6 p.m. on Sept. 26 from the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland. The APL is the builder and manager of the DART spacecraft for NASA.
This test will show a spacecraft can autonomously navigate to a target asteroid and intentionally collide with it to change the asteroid’s motion in a way that can be measured using ground-based telescopes. DART will provide important data to help better prepare for an asteroid that might pose an impact hazard to Earth, should one ever be discovered.
The following is a list of activities for DART’s impact with the asteroid Dimorphos (all times Eastern):
Monday, September 12, 2022
- 9 a.m. – NASA will host a hybrid media day at APL focused on the technology enabling the DART spacecraft to autonomously navigate to and impact its target asteroid. Participants include leaders from NASA and the DART mission team. In-person attendees will have an opportunity to tour the DART mission operations center at APL, located at 11100 Johns Hopkins Road in Laurel, Maryland.
Thursday, September 22
- 3 p.m. – Media briefing at NASA Headquarters to preview DART’s final activities before its impact with Dimorphos. The media briefing will take place in the Webb Auditorium at NASA Headquarters in the Mary W. Jackson building, 300 E. Street, SW in Washington and include senior leaders from NASA and APL.
Monday, September 26 (DART Impact Day)
Media interested in covering the DART impact from APL must complete this form by 3 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 2.
- 6 p.m. – Live coverage of DART’s impact with the asteroid Dimorphos will air on NASA TV and the agency’s website. The public also can watch live on agency social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.
- 7:14 p.m. – DART’s kinetic impact with asteroid Dimorphos.
Become a Planetary Defender
Support the DART mission by becoming a “Planetary Defender!” Participants who take a short quiz will earn a certificate and badge they can download, print, and share on social media.