A New Telescope for the Final Frontier
NASA Unveils New Technology for Space Exploration
FARGO, N.D. — From the satellite to the space shuttle, exploration in the world above has often been of key interest to scientists and a new tool is helping us discover even more.
The Hubble Space Telescope helped scientists detect components of the early universe but now, the James Webb Space Telescope is taking over.
The scientific successor to the Hubble, the Webb, will help answer some of the questions about astronomy that were unknown before it.
With this new equipment, analysts will be able to go back billions of years to look through dust clouds to see the humble beginnings of our universe.
“We’ll use this telescope to peer through dust clouds and see the site of star formation in our own Milky Way galaxy,” explained NASA Scientist Amber Straughn.
Another use of the telescope is to figure out what else is out there in the Milky Way, especially other planet–like objects.
“We want to learn about exoplanets,” said Straughn. “We had this really exciting discovery a few weeks ago of the Trappist–1 system. That’s an exoplanet system that’s relatively nearby. Only 40 light years away.”
The new technology will be able to filter the starlight as it moves through the exoplanet system and see what chemicals make up these pseudo–planet’s atmospheres.
Scientists are hoping they’ll be able to find water vapor and carbon dioxide; two key ingredients to hopefully have one day on the exoplanet.
The telescope will be launching from French Guyana in South America in 2018 and we’ll get the first images stateside in the spring of 2019.
For more information on the James Webb Space Telescope, click here.