James Webb Space Teleskop infographic
Grafik zeigt Spezifikationen vom James Webb Space Teleskop und die Wissenschaft im Hintergrund der Mission.


James Webb Super-Teleskop ist startbereit

By Jordi Bou

December 18, 2021 - Das James Webb Weltraumteleskop, das größte und stärkste Observatorium, das je gebaut worden ist, ist bereit zum Abheben mit einer Ariane 5 Rakete von Europas Kourou Weltraumhafen in Französisch Guayana. Sobald es seine Umlaufbahn erreicht hat, können Astronomen bis in die größten Weiten des Universums sehen.

Conceived 30 years ago as the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, the Webb is a joint project between NASA, the European Space Agency (ESA) and Canadian Space Agency (CSA).

The project has experienced numerous delays and cost overruns, ballooning from $500 million to almost $10 billion.

To fit inside the rocket, the telescope must be folded up, then unfolded in space in a series of manoeuvres in the first month after launch.

Webb features 18 hexagonal shaped mirrors arranged in a honeycomb shape 6.5 metres across, giving it a surface area 6.25 times larger than Hubble’s spherical 2.4m diameter primary mirror.

A Kapton foil sunshield the size of a tennis court blocks light from the sun, moon and Earth to keep the telescope extremely cool.

Webb will orbit the sun 1.5 million km from Earth at Lagrange point 2, where the gravitational pull from Earth and the sun balance out, allowing the observatory to remain stable.

While Hubble looks mostly in the visual and ultraviolet parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, Webb will look at longer wavelengths in the infrared, to see what the universe looked like around 100 to 250 million years after the Big Bang, when the first stars and galaxies were formed.

Webb will also look much closer to home, studying nearby exoplanets and objects within our solar system including Mars, the gas giants, and even some asteroids and comets.

PUBLISHED: 13/10/2021; STORY: Graphic News