Due to bad weather, the launch of James Webb has been postponed for another day. This isn’t the first time: The launch date of the most powerful space telescope ever has been pushed back for years due to misfortune and human error. While construction began in 1996, it was still believed that it would soar into the air in 2007.
To get an initial idea of what exactly Webb will do: Science journalist Govert Schilling explains it all in this video. In search of the edges of the universe and the beginning of time:
“It’s a crazy idea that it really has come this far, but it’s definitely nice that it finally happened,” flight engineer Maurice T. Plait told RTL Nieuws. “We worked hard, put a lot of energy into it. Now I want to see what he can do, and what he will show us all.”
T-plate is James Webb’s technology. For the past 20 years, he helped with all technical tests and solve any problems. He did this first from Holland, and later moved to the US state of Maryland. This is what it works for who – whichEuropean Space Agency.
His work on the telescope is not over yet today: “There is still a lot of technology and maintenance from Earth. The launch of course is always an important and exciting moment. But revealing all the mechanisms in space is also very exciting. “
The James Webb Telescope is the most powerful and largest space telescope ever built. Its development took more than 25 years. James Webb is more sensitive than its predecessor, Hubble. This allows astronomers to dig deeper into the universe. It is also the most expensive telescope ever made: the device cost more than 8 billion euros.
James Webb is so big that he wouldn’t even fit in the gigantic Ariane 5 missile he’s launching. T-plate: ”It folds inward and unfolds once in space. Like an origami piece.”
Nothing can go wrong here.
This detection takes about fourteen days and is a critical process. “We’re sure all of this will work, but it’s something that makes you think: Nothing can go wrong here.”
But the mission is designed in such a way that its makers don’t have to worry about it. “Every system has a backup. When one system fails, we can always switch to the other side. In addition, everything has been tested for years.”
Back to the first stars
James Webb was designed to look deeply into our universe. “We are particularly curious about the first stars and galaxies that formed. In addition, we hope to find materials in exoplanets that we consider essential for life, such as water.”
“But above all, I hope to get answers to questions we don’t yet know,” he says. “The greatest discoveries have been made about things that no one has ever thought of. I am especially curious about these kinds of surprises. Who knows, we might be completely wrong about the Big Bang, haha.”
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