Bam! NASA spacecraft crashes into asteroid in defense test

In this image made from a NASA livestream, the Double Asteroid Redirection Test spacecraft crashes into an asteroid on Monday, Sept. 26, 2022. (ASI/NASA via AP)

AP Aerospace Writer

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) – A NASA spacecraft has rammed an asteroid in an unprecedented test to see if a potentially menacing space rock could be knocked off course.

The galactic grand slam occurred at a harmless asteroid 7 million miles away Monday.

The Dart spacecraft plowed into the small space rock at 14,000 mph. Scientists say the impact should have carved out a crater and hurled streams of rocks and dirt into space.

Most importantly, though, scientists are hoping the collision altered the asteroid’s orbit. NASA won’t know how much the spacecraft nudged the asteroid for days, possibly weeks.

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