After many transformations, the James Webb Space Telescope has blasted off into space. On December 25, 2021 around 1:20 PM German time The Super Space Telescope lifted off from a spaceport near Kourou, French Guiana, aboard an Ariane 5 rocket. It is now on its way to the Space Observation Center about 1.5 million kilometers away to understand the universe. The road to the target orbit should take about four weeks.
“Webb has such transformative capabilities that I suppose he will mark a new era – there will be a time before and after,” NASA Administrator Jane Rigby said before the start. What technology is on board the telescope, when, how and where the telescope should unfold in space and what are the mission objectives, It can be found in the interactive multimedia history of “Spektrum.de”.
JWST is supposed to provide new images from the early universe with the help of a 25 square meter mirror. Astrophysicists also want to observe the first galaxies that formed after the Big Bang. A collaboration of nearly ten billion dollars between space agencies in the USA, Canada and Europe is circulating as a successor to the “Hubble” telescope, which has been in use for more than 30 years and has given astronomers numerous insights into the universe.
The idea for this telescope first emerged at the end of the 1980s, and teams from NASA, the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency have been planning ever since. NASA photographer Chris Gunn has documented the progress “Spektrum.de” presents a selection of his photos in a special show. But with all the successes, things always went wrong, planning was delayed, the costs originally estimated at $500 million could not be kept, and in the meantime the entire project was called into question again and again. JWST was originally supposed to start in 2007. After 14 years it worked.
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