May 17, 2022

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NASA’s James Webb Telescope teases another view of an attractive star

NASA's James Webb Telescope teases another view of an attractive star

It’s only been three months since NASA’s James Webb Telescope Her journey started It is already showing results.

Despite its location Clips of the mirror not yet lined up, the telescope shot an image of an exciting star, According to the NASA blog Posted on Friday.

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The question now becomes: What will we discover more with this wonderful tool?

Alluring picture of a star

“We still have work to do, but we are increasingly pleased with the results we’re seeing,” said Lee Feinberg, Webb’s Optical Telescope Element Manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. “Years of planning and testing are paying off, and the team couldn’t have been more excited to see what the next few weeks and months will bring.”

The new image released is Webb’s first-ever “stacked” image of the star HD 84406 and it gives an idea of ​​how sharp the telescope’s eye will be once it reaches its final shape. The term “stack” refers to the shape and the processes that the telescope had to perform in order to produce the image.

The full picture of the star HD 84406. Source: NASA

NASA engineers started with a A process called segment alignment. This occurs when all 18 beryllium strips and gold-plated and beryllium mirrors are carefully placed in alignment with each other.

The next step is called “image stacking” and where the term “stack” came from. In the process, the engineers activated groups of six mirrors simultaneously and instructed them to reset their light to interfere.

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Once all of these steps were completed, NASA was able to produce an image of the distant star using the Web’s primary science tool: NIRCam.

Next steps

What’s next for a powerful telescope? The instrument has just undergone the second and third stages of a seven-step process designed to fully align the telescope’s mirrors and operate all 18 parts as a single unit.

As Webb Telescope completes each next stage, the images it will produce will become clearer and clearer, like never before. It’s an exciting time for astronomers everywhere as they wait for Webb to reach his full final form and hopefully unlock some of the Cosmo’s deepest mysteries.