Webb telescope’s sharp views of the universe will change astronomy


PREMO Member
The James Webb Space telescope has the sharpest perspective on otherwise invisible light in the universe.

The highly anticipated first science images by the world’s premier space observatory aren’t expected until this summer. But recent test images captured by the telescope during its final commissioning phase are providing a glimpse of what’s to come.

“These are the sharpest infrared images ever taken by a space telescope,” said Michael McElwain, Webb observatory project scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, during a news conference Monday.

Webb will be able to peer inside the atmospheres of exoplanets and observe some of the first galaxies created after the universe began by observing them through infrared light, which is invisible to the human eye. The images were taken after the successful alignment of the telescope’s massive golden mirror segments. The test images show the clear, well-focused images that the observatory’s four instruments are capable of capturing.