back to article NASA's DART kicked up swarm of 37 boulders after Dimorphos asteroid crash

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has spied a swarm of 37 boulders that were ejected from the asteroid Dimorphos after the DART spacecraft crashed into its surface in the world's first planetary defense test mission. Last September, the 610kg probe collided head-on into the space rock with the goal of knocking it off its original …

  1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "If we follow the boulders in future Hubble observations"

    Because Hubble is not dead yet.

    And who knows ? Maybe, just maybe, if SpaceX or others can manage, we just might be able to get a repair mission going.

    Yeah, I know, pie-in-the-sky thinking.

    But hey, who doesn't like pie ?

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: "If we follow the boulders in future Hubble observations"

      I would think as big as Starship is, it could launch a replacement with up-to-date instruments, and without a bandaid fix to the main mirror.

      I wonder if the Starship recovery mass limit would handle bringing it back?

      Of course I'm not really holding my breath on Starship's capabilities or lack thereof.

  2. Eclectic Man Silver badge


    ESA photo with 'boulders' identified' here:

    "This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image of the asteroid Dimorphos was taken on 19 December 2022, nearly four months after the asteroid was impacted by NASA’s DART (Double Asteroid Redirection Test) mission. Hubble’s sensitivity reveals a few dozen boulders knocked off the asteroid by the force of the collision. These are among the faintest objects Hubble has ever photographed inside the Solar System. The ejected boulders range in size from 1 m to 6.7 m across, based on Hubble photometry. They are drifting away from the asteroid at around 1 km per hour. The discovery yields invaluable insights into the behaviour of a small asteroid when it is hit by a projectile for the purpose of altering its trajectory."

    Well done the DART team, NASA, ESA, and the Hubble telescope.

  3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

    ranging in size from three to 22 feet across...14,000mph

    "ranging in size from three to 22 feet across...14,000mph"

    Ta for reporting that. It puts the images we saw into real perspective :-)

    1. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

      Re: ranging in size from three to 22 feet across...14,000mph

      Perspective smerspective. Where are the scientific units? "ranging in size from a large sloth to just over two bouncy castles, moving at 1500 times the speed of a frogs tongue".

  4. Winkypop Silver badge


    The Dimorphos defence agency is formulating its response plan to this unprovoked attack.

    1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: Meanwhile

      "kicked up swarm of 37 boulders"

      Lets hope they don't round up other boulders and make a beeboulder line to Earth

      1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C

        Re: Meanwhile

        That might be a five year mission to boulderly go...

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Trigonoceps occipitalis

          Re: Meanwhile

          to go boulderly!

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

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