The James Webb Space Telescope, which has completed its alignment operation, has captured impressive images of the depths of the universe, a significant improvement over previous telescopes. Shows.
The Large Magellanic Cloud is now clearer than ever with the infrared eyes of the James Webb Space Telescope. As the $ 10 billion James Webb Observatory enters its commissioning phase, its latest image shows the actual performance of the telescope's stars using its coolest instrument, the MIRI, according to NASA officials.
Miri's new image shows interstellar gas chemistry in the finest detail; Including the release of carbon and hydrogen molecules called "polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons," which are part of life.
This imaging capability is crucial to help the Web understand how stars and protoplanetary systems are formed. "This is a very good scientific example of what the Web will do for us in the years to come," he said.
In this image, we look at the same thing in Magellanic Clouds, which are very small outer galaxies that have evolved less chemically than our Milky Way galaxy. "So this gives us a chance to look at the processes of star and planet formation in a very different environment from our own galaxy," he said.
Micron) shows a clear view of the Large Magellanic Cloud, a neighboring dwarf galaxy close to the Milky Way. In addition to the web image, the engineers published an image captured by the retired Spitzer Space Telescope at a wavelength of 8.0 micrometers in the same range. Spitzer was a pioneer in producing high-resolution near-infrared images of the Universe at the time, but this comparison clearly shows that the Web is much more powerful. NASA's Veteran Telescope and its Data has it. Noting that Spitzer did amazing things, Evans noted that the observatory was limited in its spatial resolution because it was optimized for large-scale field mapping of celestial bodies in the background.
"Compared to Spitzer's type of activity, the close-up perspective of the Web offers, for the first time, an astonishing view of other galactic processes and pulls back the curtains," he said. "Because we use the mid-infrared spectrum to study materials that are hidden when viewed at visible wavelengths."
Comparison of images of the James Webb Space
Telescope (right) and Spitzer (left) of the Large Magellanic
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech (left), NASA/ESA/CSA/STScI (right)
In addition to the different missions of the two telescopes, the Web has a much larger main mirror, improved detectors, and a superior viewing point compared to the Spitzer. The Spitzer Telescope also operated in Earth orbit around the Sun, at the opposite point of the Web orbit, at the Lagrangian point 2 of the Sun-Earth, 1.5 million kilometers away. These features allow NASA's new Telescope to access infrared information more clearly than its predecessor.
Cooling down to the final temperature of the depths of space needed for infrared observations, engineers are in the final stages of refining their instruments. (LMC), this galaxy was considered as an ideal end goal. Because, as Michael McElwain, a scientist at the Web Observatory project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, noted, knowing the location of the galaxy's stars is a key advantage for scientists.
"We can Use them for astronomical calibrations, and such information is important for calibrating scientific instruments. Of course, these images are also very spectacular.
In the near future, mission experts will also test the Web's ability to track solar system objects such as planets, moons, rings, asteroids and comets. Given that the observatory is clearly sensitive to starlight, scientists will focus on making sure the web can do this properly.
Evans said of other work in the final preparation process: "Also We will measure the changes in the alignment of the telescope, because during scientific activity, We guide the Telescope to different places. To test this, the web will soon fluctuate between slightly warmer and colder temperatures, so everyone will see how quickly its mirrors heat up and cool by rotating in space.
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Focusing on the launch goal first, they stressed that the observatory is scheduled to begin scientific work this summer, most likely in mid-July. That way, as scientists say, by the time the launch phase is complete, the Web will be ready to open up scientific tools to the universe.
Cover Photo: Graphic Design by the James Webb
Credit : ESA/ATG medialab
Sources: Space, NASA