The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), the Hubble replacement, has undergone a crucial phase of mirror alignment and has taken the highest resolution infrared images of distant galaxies ever taken from space.
This article by Leah Crane, writing for New Scientist, makes the following points:
- The telescope’s operators say the JWST will be able to meet, or even exceed, expectations.
- JWST peers into the cosmos with the help of 18 gold-plated hexagonal mirrors.
- These mirrors must be aligned with extraordinary precision for the telescope to work properly.
- The first images, sent back in February, were blurry because the mirrors weren’t correctly aligned. Following the adjustments, however, the images are now crystal clear.
- Once JWST begins taking science images, it should help unravel some of the universe’s biggest mysteries—from exoplanet habitability to dark energy.
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