NASA has prepared a new powerful xenon thruster for new Double Asteroid Redirection mission in 2021

Asteroid redirection mission
Asteroid redirection mission
Double Asteroid Redirection mission (DART)

Nasa have been prepared a evolutionary powerful xenon thruster for next DART mission. DART mission is the first planetary defence mission. This mission launch by NEXT-c engine. Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission launch on 22nd  July in 2021. It is a demonstration mission to the use of kinetic energy impact to deflect an asteroid from it's original direction. This DART mission's target is destroy the two binary asteroids which could colid with earth in November, 2021. The two binary asteroids are Didymos-A and Didymos-B. After launch the DART mission will reach it's target after two months on 22nd September in 2021.

Asteroids Details

Didymos-A is too large than Didymos-B. The diameter of Didymos-A is 780 meters and Didymos-B's diameter is 160 meters.  DART will crash into the Didymos-B and it's kinetic energy impact on Didymos-A's direction. When xenon thruster system is successfully done on Didymos-B and Didymos-A then in future if any asteroid come towards the earth xenon thruster can easily safe the earth from any kind of asteroid. 



The DART mission's phenomenon is the changing the direction of asteroid. The powerful xenon thruster have developed at NASA's "Glenn Research Center" in Cleveland and it's designed create by Aerojet Rocket dyne. The environmental testing of xenon thruster have verified in vacuum chamber. DART mission is the first asteroid redirection mission in the world. DART mission proves the NASA could prevent a large asteroid impact on earth by changing of asteroid's direction.

What is the NEXT-C?
NEXT-C is a powerful ion drive engine which is also a rocket. NEXT-C used the xenon gas as fuel because xenon is the heaviest non redioactive elemental inert gas. When space mission required the lifting of massive amount of thrust from earth gravitational field in that time they used the powerful ion drive. In this mission NEXT-C lifted the DART from earth. NEXT-C is there times powerful engine than NSTAR ion drive. Generally NSTAR ion drive have used in deep space mission. NEXT-C can produce 6.9 kw thrust power and 236 mn (milinewtons) thrust while NSTAR ion drive produce only 2.3 kw thrust power and 250 mn (milinewtons).
Future Of DART Mission

When DART collide with the Didymos-B it will help to some other space agency for collecting the information about the collision of asteroids. Italian space agency provide LICIA device, it will capture the image of DART collision with Didymos-B. European Space Agency planned a asteroid redirection mission after success of DART mission which name is HERA. HERA mission launch in 2024 and it arrives to it's targeted asteroid in 2027.