James Webb Telescope ready to unlock mysteries of the cosmos

Jul 6, 2022, 2:30 PM

(Twitter Photo/NASA)...

(Twitter Photo/NASA)

(Twitter Photo/NASA)

Since its near flawless launch in December, the James Webb Telescope is a true modern marvel of technology!

Having located to safe place some one million miles from Earth known as Lagrange point L2, the James Webb Telescope has been setting itself up for some serious science.

That time is just around the corner!

Get set for some interesting images which will be released by NASA on or about July 12.

The first of four main instruments on board Webb are ready for operations. The spectrograph known as NIRSS (The Near Infrared Imager and Slitless Spectrograph) is ready to reveal additional secrets of the universe.

The real excitement will be images taken by Webb, which will be the deepest images of the universe to date.

In addition to this, we expect to see the first spectral image of a true exoplanet. These are planets which are around other stars in the universe.

Here is a basic overview of the James Webb Telescope.

There will be an additional press conference for all to watch Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. Arizona time.

The James Webb Telescope is a project which is thought to have cost some $10 billion. It will look back in time as close as possible to the original date of the creation of the known universe 13.8 billion years ago.

The naming of the new telescope has not been without controversy.

One of the wonders of the telescope lies in its 18 hexagonal gold plated mirrors, which give it a surface diameter of some 21 feet of imaging space. By comparison, the current Hubble Space Telescope has one primary mirror of some 94 inches.

Here, we are due for a comparison with the Hubble Space Telescope.

The James Webb Telescope will be seeking information on the moments after the initial expansion of the universe and what occurred during a period of cosmological evolution known as inflation.

Cosmic inflation is better explained here.

Here is a link to the location of the James Webb Telescope in our night skies.

With full deployment of the Webb Telescope, the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, a highly modified 747SP, will end operations by the last day of September.

SOFIA has been conducting great research for the past decade or more and made some amazing contributions to astronomy. To learn more about the mission, we suggest this link.

Our Dr. Sky media team has flown on SOFIA and we offer up this video of what a flight is like.

That is our salute to SOFIA and look forward to all the amazing science which is to come from the James Webb Telescope…

July will be a most memorable month in space science.

Clear skies!

To print your own monthly star chart, click here.

To view satellites/dates/times of passage, click here.

Listen to the Dr. Sky Show on KTAR News 92.3 FM every Saturday at 3 a.m.

Podcasts are available here.

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James Webb Telescope ready to unlock mysteries of the cosmos