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China wants to divert the course of an asteroid, the test expected by 2026

China wants to divert the course of an asteroid, the test expected by 2026

China is one of the countries that invests the most in the development of the space sector and has proven this significantly in recent years. The Chang’e Moon Missions It also allowed the exploration of the far side of the moon and the collection of samples that were later returned to Earth On Mars there is a Chinese rover, Zhurongwhich is currently operating in the Utopia Planitia region, the same place where NASA’s Viking 2 lander will land in 1976.

At the same time, China is working on Planetary defense program from asteroids Based on the deflection as a result of a kinetic effect, which began to be talked about already last year. idea Asteroid Bennu was bombed with 23 Long March-5B missiles (Same as sampling task Osiris Rex), as a potential danger to Earth, but this was probably only a hypothesis and now new, more subtle details about future plans are emerging. There is no longer talk of a specific goal, but the course of action will remain the same: the idea is to find and implement a potentially dangerous asteroid on Earth. Kinetic impact testing by 2026.

For some, this is good news, while for others it is a new concern, as China maintains a good level of secrecy about any military or air operation, moreover, no one has fondly remembered the Longmarch-5B missiles used by the Chinese (last year) The first stage of one of these missiles You have risked crashing into the densely populated areas on Earth).

The new planetary defense plan was shared by Wu Yanhua, deputy director of the China National Space Administration (CNSA), during the first planetary defense conference broadcast on China Central Television (CCTV). Already before the experimental mission, China will work on early warning software that, according to plans, will be able to analyze the trajectories of the most dangerous rocky objects, thereby ensuring constant monitoring of the celestial vault. The project has been around for some time and was also included in the White Papaer published by the Chinese space agency in late January. The document also talked about other initiatives, such as the mission to collect samples from the asteroid Kamoʻoalewa, which would later culminate in a close encounter with comet 311P/PANSTARRS.

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Some may have noticed that China’s planetary defense program reminds us a lot DART initiative from NASA and SpaceX, which had already started its beta launch at the end of last year. The target will be the asteroid Dydimos In September 2022, it will be hit by a Falcon 9 missile at a speed of more than 24,000 km / h. Not long now and in a few months we will know the outcome of the mission.