The LICIA Cube will witness the collision of DART with the asteroid Dimorphos in real time

When NASA’s DART spacecraft smashes into the asteroid Demorphos on Sept. 26, it will have a silent witness: an Italian cube called LICIACube will witness the ground-breaking real-time experiment of excited scientists on Earth.

LICIACubeor the Italian Light Asteroid Imaging Cube, is a small 31-pound (14 kg) satellite that has been able to ride Arrow (Double Asteroid Redirect Test) to DidymusDimorphos binary asteroid system. DART deployed the cubes on Sunday (September 11) at 7:14 PM EDT (2314 GMT) to give LICIACube 15 days to assume a safe position to monitor the collision of DART with Dimorphos. Impact is the first experiment of its kind designed to alter the orbit of a space rock in a crucial test of planetary defense A concept that might one day save the lives of millions of people on Earth.