Read the story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
By Alton Parrish (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:

Can Earth Be Saved? Can An Asteroid Be Deflected From Its Path? ESA Targets Didymos

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.



Is asteroid deflection possible? In an upcoming mission, it is the asteroid that will be impacted by a space craft from Earth to see if it would be possible to divert an asteroid’s path and prevent a future collision with Earth. 

ESA’s proposed Asteroid Impact and Deflection Assessment mission now has a target: asteroid Didymos. The recent Russian meteor and, on the same day, our planet’s close encounter with an even larger chunk of celestial debris underline the need for us to learn more about these high-speed space rocks.

ESA’s AIDA mission now has a target: asteroid Didymos

Credit: ESA

For the last two years, ESA has been working with international partners on the mission concept, dubbed AIDA. Last week, research centres each side of the Atlantic agreed the spacecraft would target asteroid Didymos.

Currently under study, the mission would intercept Didymos around the time of the asteroid’s closest approach to within 11 million km of Earth in 2022.

Didymos is a ‘binary’, with two asteroids orbiting each other – one is roughly 800 m across, the other about 150 m.

AIDA is a low-budget international effort that would send two small craft to intercept a double target. While one probe smashes into the smaller asteroid at around 6.25 km/s, the other records what happens.

One effect would be a change in the orbital ballet of the two objects. AIDA is not intended to show how we could deflect an asteroid that threatens Earth but it would be a first step.

Didymos with its moon  

Credit: ESA

The craft are conceived to be independent and could achieve most of their goals alone. The collider is the Double Asteroid Redirection Test, or DART, from the Johns Hopkins’ Applied Physics Laboratory in the US. ESA’s Asteroid Impact Monitor, or AIM, would survey Didymos in detail, before and after the collision.

Didymos poses no risk to our planet, but will come close enough to be observable by 1–2 m-diameter telescopes on Earth before and after the strike. AIM’s close-up view would provide ‘ground truth’ and observe the impact dynamics as well as the resulting crater, allowing ground-based observations and models to be evaluated.

Earlier this month, ESA issued a call for scientists to propose experiments that could be carried on the mission or performed on the ground to increase its return.

“AIDA is not just an asteroid mission, it is also meant as a research platform open to all different mission users,” says Andrés Gálvez, ESA studies manager.

“The project has value in many areas,” agrees Andy Cheng, AIDA lead at Johns Hopkins’ Applied Physics Laboratory, “from applied science and exploration to asteroid resource utilisation.”

Researchers have until 15 March to express their interest. The experiment ideas can be anything that deals with hypervelocity impacts, planetary science, planetary defence, human exploration or innovation in spacecraft operations.

Credit:  ESA

The energy released in the AIDA impact at several kilometres per second is similar to that of a large piece of space junk hitting a satellite. The mission would thus help to model severe spacecraft damage by space debris.

“It is an exciting opportunity to do world-leading research of all kinds on a problem that is out of this world,” says Stephan Ulamec from the DLR German Aerospace Center. “And it helps us learn how to work together in international missions tackling the asteroid impact hazard.”

“A mission such as this allows us to test technologies before any asteroid is identified as a threat,” explains Patrick Michel, leader of the Planetology team at the Observatoire de la Côte d´Azur (OCA, Lagrange Laboratory) and a member of the Working Group on Near-Earth Objects of the International Astronomical Union.

Visualization of spacecraft impacting asteroid

Credit: ESA

“Understanding the physics of impacts is also key to planetary science and binary asteroid dynamics.” 

AIDA is a project with a strong international component. Together with the 20-nation ESA and the US JHU/APL, experts from the French OCA, the DLR German Aerospace Center and several NASA centres (Johnson Space Center, Langley Research Centre and Goddard Space Flight Center) are participating in the mission definition. A dedicated workshop on this and related projects will be held as part of the Planetary Defence Conference in Flagstaff, Arizona, USA on 19 April, where the results of the call for experiment ideas will be presented.

The two components of the AIDA mission are funded throughout their study phases. DART is supported by a NASA contract, while AIM mission studies are paid for by ESA’s General Studies Programme. 

Contacts and sources:
Andrés Gálvez, ESA General Studies Programme manager
Future Preparation and Strategic Studies Office

Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!

Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 866-388-7003 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 866-388-7003 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

HNEX HydroNano EXtracellular Water - Improve immune system health and reduce inflammation.

Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)

Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen!

Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.

Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%! (See Video).

Report abuse


    Your Comments
    Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

    Total 3 comments
    • BeePeeOilDisaster

      It cant be deflected if they cant even tell that its heading towards earth! They didnt see the recent one that exploded over Russia…

    • mfritz0

      Gravity is the best deflection tool at our disposal. A phase conjugate microwave resonator that generates a gravity well can be produced in space into which the asteroid will “fall into” and send it into a course away from the planet it is headed towards. Electrogravitics has been studied since the early 20s by Thomas Townsend Brown PH.D. Physics. In 1952 the world aerospace industries started development of this phenomenon and in 1958 this project went “Black”. These megawatt microwave beams (field induced Soliton phenomenon) are extremely dangerous if not controlled and can cause such things as spontaneous human combustion, radiation poisoning, and are even be used to create “crop circles”. (Which is why this technology should never be allowed in the publics’ hand). Recently there have been numerous examples of high atmospheric “chem-trails” , which actually are places where moisture is installed into the upper atmosphere so these microwave beams can “focus in on” when these electrogravitic space craft are re-entering the Earths atmosphere, instead of people, (who contain over 78% moisture). Examples of these type of craft that are capable of making these “gravity wells” are the TR-3B Astra, (the B2 bomber also uses a simpler version of electrogravitics, the exhaust system and leading edges of its winglike body are highly electrostatically charged to reduce drag and allow forward propulsion in almost vacuum like atmospheres), and most back-engineered alien saucers. Alien extraterrestrial civilizations have been visiting Earth using crafts of this principle for several millenium. A typical alien craft utilizing this technology will glow bright orange-white and pulsate with the motion of the craft. Further reading on this subject is available from: “Secrets of Antigravity Propulsion” by: Paul A. LaViolette PH.D. (ISBN: 978-159143078-0) and a very interesting report written in 1956 titled: “An Examination of Electrostatic Motion, Dynamic Counterbary, and Barycentric Control” otherwise known as “Report GRG-013/56–Electrogravitics Systems” from Aviation Studies (International) Ltd’s 1956 Gravity Research Group. Bear in mind this report was written in 1956 and many of the scientific methods are outdated, but the principles are the same. Information can also be found with “Google” concerning all these topics”.


      we need a huge fart collector store up all the farts from a million people
      send it on a space craft them release the huge fart bomb at the astroid

    Load more ...




    Email this story
    Email this story

    If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

    If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.