Space

As Smashed Asteroid Develops a Twin Tail, NASA Witnesses a "Stunning Surprise"

By Aazam

The Didymos-Dimorphous system is showing off after it was hit by NASA's Dart spacecraft.

The Dart spacecraft blasted itself into an asteroid last month during NASA's ambitious planetary defense test mission.

It was a huge success, but new follow-up images are showing some unexpected behavior from the Didymos-Dimorphous asteroid system.

NASA and the European Space Agency released a new image from the Hubble Space Telescope on Thursday that shows.

That the double asteroid system has developed a twin tail, seen as two streaks extending backwards from a bright ball of blue-tinted light.

DART made history on September 26 when the spacecraft crashed into Dimorphous, a small moon in orbit around the large asteroid Didymos.

It was a test to see if such an impact could change the orbit of a space object.

It worked, and it provides a blueprint for how humanity might deal with a dangerous asteroid that is on its way to endanger Earth.

Astronomers later used ground-based telescopes to observe the long tail of the asteroid.

It was calculated to be about 10,000 kilometers (6,000 mi) long. Hubble's new look shows what's happened since then.