Success of the James Webb Space Telescope

After many delays due to technical issues, the world’s most powerful space telescope launched into orbit on Saturday, bound for an outpost 1.5 million kilometres from Earth.

The James Webb Space Telescope, which took three decades and billions of dollars to build, launched from French Guiana’s Kourou Space Centre atop an Ariane 5 rocket.

It will take a month to reach its far-flung destination.

It is intended to return fresh information that will aid scientists in learning more about the Universe’s origins and Earth-like planets beyond our solar system.

Webb, named for a former NASA director, is a follower of the iconic Hubble space telescope, but it will show mankind what the Universe looked like much closer to its beginning approximately 14 billion years ago.

In terms of size and intricacy, the telescope is unparalleled.

Its mirror is three times the size of Hubble’s, measuring 6.5 metres in diameter and made up of 18 hexagonal parts.

It was folded to fit into the rocket owing to its large size.

The Lagrange 2 point, where Webb’s orbit is located, was chosen in part because it keeps the Earth, the Solar, as well as the Moon together on the same side of its sun shield.

Basically, the telescope uses infrared radiation to detect objects in space, hence it must be shielded from the radiation coming from the Sun at all times so as to function properly

The launch of JWST is a big leap for humanity to understand our past and gear up for our future.

By Jhanvee Khanna

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