In less than two weeks, NASA will finally reveal the first snapshots from the James Webb Space Telescope. According to the agency, on July 12the entire world will have access to the opening notes, among them “the deepest image of the universe ever taken,” in the words of the agency’s director, Bill Nelson.
While he didn’t specify which objects in the early universe the telescope focused on, nor how old those targets were, Nelson said the images would show the first objects ever seen. “This is beyond what humanity has ever looked at, and we are just beginning to understand what Webb can and will do,” he added.
Until then, the oldest scientific data reached were a series of deep imaging fields from a space telescope. Hubble Galaxies appear in our universe formed only a few hundred million years after the great explosionthat occurred about 13.7 billion years ago.
The NASA administrator’s remarks were delivered at a media event at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which manages both the Hubble and the new space telescope operations.
Other images to be revealed in Webb’s science detection will be the first spectrum of an exoplanet captured by the equipment, according to Thomas Zurbuchen, co-director of NASA’s Science Mission Direction, who spoke at the same event.
These spectra, which measure the amount of light emitted at certain wavelengths, provide clues to the planet’s chemistry that point to its formation history.
“Let us look at these worlds that keep us awake at night, while we look at the starry sky and ask ourselves: Is there life elsewhere?” This is what Zurbuchen said about the philosophical teacher.
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