NASA spacecraft will collide with an asteroid to test planetary defence.

NASA will launch the world's first mission to test technology for defending Earth from asteroid or comet threats.

The agency's Double Asteroid Redirection Test, or DART, will strike the asteroid Dimorphos on September 26 at 7:14 p.m. ET.

DART will provide data to assist Earth in better preparing for an asteroid that may pose a threat to Earth.

Dimorphos is the smaller moonlet asteroid in the Didymos binary asteroid system.

It is 525 feet in diameter and orbits the larger asteroid Didymos.

The collision will cut the small asteroid moonlet's orbit around Didymos by several minutes.

The timing of the impact was chosen to minimise the distance between Earth and Didymos, allowing

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