Images: Falcon 9 rocket stands on Vandenberg birth pad with NASA asteroid probe

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Images: Falcon 9 rocket stands on Vandenberg birth pad with NASA asteroid probe
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These pictures pronounce SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket standing on Direct Commence Complex 4-East at Vandenberg Direct Power Harmful, hours ahead of liftoff with NASA’s DART mission, an experiment to check how a spacecraft also can deflect a dangerous asteroid a ways from Earth.

The 229-foot-spacious (70-meter) launcher is looking ahead to blastoff at 10: 21: 02 p.m. EST Tuesday (1: 21: 02 a.m. EST; 0621: 02 GMT Wednesday) from Vandenberg, a protection force birth facility on California’s Central Cruise between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Take a look at, or DART, spacecraft is sitting on high of the rocket. The Falcon 9 will ship the spacecraft — about the dimension of a small automobile — on a course toward a pair of companion asteroids named Didymos and Dimorphos.

DART will collide with Dimorphos — the smaller of the 2 — at around 15,000 mph (24,000 kilometers per hour) next September. Scientists will exhaust ground-based mostly entirely mostly telescopes to measure how mighty the impact, that also can simply fracture the DART spacecraft, modified the orbit of Dimorphos around Didymos, its bigger companion.

Didymos and Dimorphos are no longer a risk to Earth any time in the advance future, but the kinetic impact technique can be feeble if scientists came throughout an asteroid on a collision course with our planet. A deflection mission a ways enough upfront of the risk to Earth would possibly possibly well nudge an asteroid correct into a completely different orbit, doing away with the hazard to our planet.

Read our preview chronicle for predominant parts on the mission.

Credit rating: Gene Blevins / LA Every day Info
Credit rating: Gene Blevins / LA Every day Info
Credit rating: Brian Sandoval / Spaceflight Now
Credit rating: Brian Sandoval / Spaceflight Now
Credit rating: Brian Sandoval / Spaceflight Now
Credit rating: Brian Sandoval / Spaceflight Now

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Follow Stephen Clark on Twitter: @StephenClark1.


In pronounce so that you can survey extra articles love this please toughen our protection of the set program by turning correct into a Spaceflight Now Member. If all people who enjoys our web residing helps fund it, we can lengthen and toughen our protection extra.


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