Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART): Structural and Dynamic Interactions between Asteroidal Elements of Binary Asteroid (65803) Didymos

Hirabayashi, Masatoshi; Ferrari, Fabio; Jutzi, Martin; Nakano, Ryota; Raducan, Sabina D.; Sánchez, Paul; Soldini, Stefania; Zhang, Yun; Barnouin, Olivier S.; Richardson, Derek C.; Michel, Patrick; Dotto, Elisabetta; Rossi, Alessandro; Rivkin, Andrew R. (2022). Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART): Structural and Dynamic Interactions between Asteroidal Elements of Binary Asteroid (65803) Didymos. The planetary science journal, 3(6), p. 140. IOP Publishing 10.3847/psj/ac6eff

Hirabayashi_2022_Planet._Sci._J._3_140.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution (CC-BY).

Download (2MB) | Preview

NASAʼs Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission is the first full-scale planetary defense mission. The target is the binary asteroid (65803) Didymos, in which the smaller component Dimorphos (∼164 m equivalent diameter) orbits the larger component Didymos (∼780 m equivalent diameter). The DART spacecraft will impact Dimorphos, changing the system’s mutual orbit by an amount that correlates with DARTʼs kinetic deflection capability. The spacecraft collision with Dimorphos creates an impact crater, which reshapes the body. Also, some particles ejected from the DART impact site on Dimorphos eventually reach Didymos. Because Didymos’s rapid spin period (2.26 hr) may be close to its stability limit for structural failure, the ejecta reaching Didymos may induce surface disturbance on Didymos. While large uncertainties exist, nonnegligible reshaping scenarios on Didymos and Dimorphos are possible if certain conditions are met. Our analysis shows that given a surface slope uncertainty on Dimorphos of 45°, with no other information about its local topography, and if the DART-like impactor is treated as spherical, the ejecta cone crosses Didymos with speeds ≳ 14 m s−1 in 13% of simulations. Additional work is necessary to determine the amount of mass delivered to Didymos from the DART impact and whether the amount of kinetic energy delivered is sufficient to overcome cohesive forces in those cases. If nonnegligible (but small) reshaping occurs for either of these asteroids, the resulting orbit perturbation and reshaping are measurable by Earth-based observations.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Space Research and Planetary Sciences
08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute

UniBE Contributor:

Ferrari, Fabio, Jutzi, Martin, Raducan, Sabina-Denisa


500 Science > 520 Astronomy
600 Technology > 620 Engineering
500 Science > 530 Physics




IOP Publishing




Dora Ursula Zimmerer

Date Deposited:

16 Mar 2023 16:36

Last Modified:

21 Sep 2023 17:00

Publisher DOI:





Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback