With the James Webb Space Telescope set to release its initial images July 12th to much deserved fanfare, these images are set to the beginning of a great period of exploration and expansion of knowledge for the field of astronomy. After many years of effort by countless individuals, the telescope will start providing humanity with insights into the cosmos. Therefore, here are 5 reasons to be excited for the James Webb Space Telescope to begin its research.
- The launch, deployment, and alignment have all been stellar!
After so many years of delays, the near perfect launch, deployment, and alignment has meant that the telescope is in a great position to be able to observe the universe for the greatest amount of time due to the amount of fuel left and other factors. The team has done a great job with solving issues that have arisen, such as after its C3 mirror segment suffered a micrometeoroid strike, the team was able to compensate for the strike using a mirror actuator. It is amazing how well this entire project has gone after launch to get it to this point of releasing amazing photographs to the public.
- It will answer many cosmological mysteries
The JWST will solve many cosmological mysteries including how black holes are made, what some of the earliest stars look like, and how planetary disks form. These discoveries will change their respective areas of astronomy and help humanity better understand how the universe and celestial bodies evolve and function.
- Find additional earth-like planets and potentially life
As the JWST does its work, the telescope will help find earth like exoplanets and help identify what their atmospheres are like. This will be able to help scientists better understand more about these exoplanets what elements and might exist on them. This is crucial to help understanding where potentially habitable exoplanets may exist.
- The images will inspire the world
The Hubble Space Telescope has provided the world with so many amazing images throughout its service life that have inspired people to become scientists and love space. With the James Webb Space Telescope will be able to photograph deeper into space than any prior orbital telescope, there will a plethora of opportunities to take photos that will stun the world. These images will inspire scientists and citizens around the world to reach for the stars and solve many of life’s hardest challenges.
- The technology on the JWST will revolutionize future telescopes
Although the JWST was just launched, the methods to deploy the telescope and technologies have an enormous opportunity to revolutionize future telescopes. These ways of manufacturing the JWST and getting the mirrors into space in an affordable and scalable fashion will see more future telescopes provide amazing contributions to science like the James Webb Telescope will.