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Video Of Nasa Dart Impacting An Asteroid


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Ok, so it's still in space so not quite a meteorite technically speaking.

First person view of the craft impacting directly into Dimorphos, I linked a few seconds before impact here. For those who don't know what this is - DART is NASA's test craft built to "Armageddon" an asteroid, which is to say it's meant to crash into an asteroid and divert it's course so that it won't catastrophically hit Earth and usher humans out like the dinosaurs.

 This is the kind of stuff I'm happy my tax dollars go to.

 

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To put this (natural, asteroid) satellite's size in perspective, here are some estimated diameters of meteoroids (pre-breakup) from known events:

Chelyabinsk, Russia (2013):  20 m.

Barringer Crater, Arizona, USA (50,000 years ago):  50 m.

Tunguska, Russia (1908):  65 m.

[ Dimorphos:  170 m. ]

Chicxulub, Mexico (66 million years ago):  10,000 m.

I think these estimated sizes assume all are asteroids.  Although some have been hypothesized as comets (which would have considerably lower densities and thus larger diameters for fixed mass), I don't think those hypotheses have stood up, or at least aren't currently matching the best evidence.

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I wonder how they'd go diverting the course of one the size of Texas!   That's the one you've got to be worried about.

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2 hours ago, phrunt said:

I wonder how they'd go diverting the course of one the size of Texas!   That's the one you've got to be worried about.

You're off-scale by about 2 or 3 orders orders of magnitude, phrunt, depending upon what worries you.  For example according to Wikipedia, Waco, Texas is the 22nd largest city in that state, by population.  The meteoroid that wiped out the dinosaurs and 75% of plant and animals species on the earth at that time (66 million years ago) is estimated at (only?) 10 km in diameter -- about the size of Waco.  From Wikipedia:

With the exception of some ectothermic species such as sea turtles and crocodilians, no tetrapods weighing more than 25 kilograms (55 pounds) survived.

(Damn crocs -- what does it take??)

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It was a bit of a joke 🙂

 

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