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The Asteroid Impact & Deflection Assessment (AIDA) collaboration involves two independent spacecraft being sent to binary asteroid system, Didymos. AIDA will provide fundamental new information on asteroid impact cratering, which has implications for planetary defence, human spaceflight, and near-Earth object science and resource utilisation.
In 2022 NASA's DART spacecraft will approach the asteroid system and crash straight into the smaller of the two (the 'moon'). ESA's Hera spacecraft will arrive later to measure the consequences of DART’s impact. Hera will pay a crucial role in providing a detailed, clear-eyed post mortem of the impacted asteroid and its crater.
DART and Hera are self-standing; each mission on its own will provide valuable knowledge. However, when combined, this knowledge will be multiplied considerably.