Sept. 26 2022. NASA’s DART mission successfully crashed into the asteroid Dimorphos and marked the beginning of what scientists call planetary defense.

Dimorphos, an asteroid about 160 meters in diameter, did not pose a danger to our planet, but DART is the first planetary defense mission to attempt to deflect an asteroid, and it is also the first time humanity has attempted to move another celestial body.

LiciaCube, an Italian-made spacecraft, also filmed the impact from a distance. This nanosat will send back a huge amount of data to scientists on Earth. What we learn from the DART impact will help experts build models that are more accurate and prepare us to defend Earth should a future asteroid impact threat be discovered

LICIACube objectives

  • LICIACube will confirm the spacecraft impact, observe the evolution of the ejected plume, and potentially capture images of the newly formed impact crater.
  • In addition, it will send images of the opposite hemisphere of Dimorphos that DART never saw.

Credit: ASI/NASA

3D PLUS contribution

3D PLUS contributes to the DART mission with multiple components such as MRAM memories onboard DART, but also in its companionship, LiciaCube nanosat, manufactured by ARGOTEC, that integrates highly reliable memory modules such as SDRAM, FLASH NAND and EEPROM and the 4Mpx Monochrome Camera.