Successful launch of the James Webb Space Telescope: first image in 6 months

A really special birthday to scientists and enthusiasts from all over the world! the release From James Webb Space Telescope It has been successful after several delays (initial date scheduled for launch was 2007) also in the last period, finally yesterday, December 25, 2021, big telescope take a trip with Ariane 5 . missile.

Despite the great reliability of Arianespace Many held their breath until… JWST It wasn’t actually far from the surface. As we mentioned in the past, the launch is “single” part of its actual implementation. He remembered that Thomas Zurbuchen (Associate Administrator at NASA) Previous Posted on the agency’s official blog. There is still one “monitoring” This gem of technology in the coming months.

The first image will be from the James Webb Space Telescope in 6 months

the release From space telescope It happened, as expected, yesterday at 13:20 (Italian time). Mission called VA256 You will be one of the last to use Ariane 5 . vector Which will be replaced next year by Ariane 6. To carry more than 6 tons of mass JWST In orbit and then in the direction of the second Lagrangian point was exploited European space port From koro In French Guiana very close to the equator, which makes launching easier than launching bases towards the poles.

A little more than a minute after the start, the missile was already at an altitude of about 14 kilometers with two solid-fuel boosters separated by just over 2 minutes 70 kilometers of altitude. As expected, the festivals opened at about 3’30 inches with James Webb Space Telescope Whoever saw the light of the sun for the first time.

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space telescope

Signal reception at Malindi station, operated by ASI

As expected station Malindi (in Kenya), operated by ASI, received Ariane signal 5 Born in JWST It then gives way to NASA’s DSN antennas in Australia (in Canberra). The telescope separated from the second stage of the rocket at an altitude of 1,400 km, about 27 minutes after take-off, to continue its journey 1.5 million km. The solar panels were deployed about 30 minutes after launch.


Comparing the use of solar panels, for example, to RTG (as in the Mars rover Curiosity and determination) allows less weight and lower infrared emissions. Two main features of a telescope with which a part of the instrument will be cooled down to a few Kelvins (for example, MIRI operates at only 7 K).

Where to track the JWST flight

the NASA Also make it available custom website Where to follow the journey of the greats James Webb Space Telescope. In general it must be remembered that in order to finish operations Initial order We’ll have to wait 29.5 days. There will be a lot of delicate operations to be done which is why Rebook He had emphasized that the launch was just part of the problems to be addressed.

James Webb

to me first pictures Instead we have to wait about 6 months. the NASA At this point he will hold a press conference showing the latest news (currently the exact day has not been announced). The formation and alignment of the mirrors will be slow but very precise (inaccuracy less than 100 nm).

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Gregory L. Robinson He said (web program manager) “The launch of the Webb Space Telescope is a pivotal moment: This is only the beginning of the Webb mission. We will now look at the long-awaited and crucial 29 days at Webb’s frontier. As the spacecraft unfolds in space, Webb will carry out the sequence. It is one of the most difficult and complex deployment attempts in space.” Once commissioning is complete, we will see great images that will capture our imaginations.”.

space telescope

We remind you that thanks James Webb Space Telescope and sensitivity to Infrared It will be possible to see behind – on the other side Dust cover that often surrounds planets and rising stars. Moreover, due to the Doppler effect and redshift It will be possible to see “Going back in time” The first galaxies formed after the Big Bang. Moreover, by spectroscopy, it will be possible to distinguish the atmospheres of exoplanets. Sure, it took a lot of money (more than 10 billion dollars) and many years, but what lies ahead JWST It would be a great thing for 5 (or 10) years on the job.

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