James webb telescope images

What is the James Webb Space Telescope?

The James Webb Space Telescope is a powerful tool that will allow astronomers to study the universe in greater detail than ever before. The telescope is set to launch in October of 2018 and will be able to take images of distant objects with unprecedented clarity. The telescope is named after James Webb, the former NASA administrator who played a key role in the development of the Hubble Space Telescope. The James Webb Space Telescope is often referred to as the " successor" to Hubble, as it will be able to observe even more distant objects with its larger mirror and enhanced instruments.

The technology of the James Webb Space Telescope

The telescope has a mirror that is 6.5 meters in diameter. This allows it to collect lighter than any other telescope. It also has a camera that can take extremely high-resolution photos.

The telescope has a primary mirror that is six times larger than the primary mirror of the Hubble Space Telescope. The James Webb Space Telescope will be able to see objects that are much fainter than those that can be seen with the Hubble Space Telescope.

The photos from the James Webb Space Telescope

The photos that the James Webb Space Telescope takes are incredible. They show us things that we have never seen before. They help us to understand the universe better.

Amazing looking carina nebula.
(c) NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration

The Sombrero Galaxy

It's one of the most stunning galaxies ever observed in the universe, 30 million light years away.The Sombrero Galaxy is a spiral galaxy around 50,000 light years across, about a third the size of the Milky Way. From Earth we nearly see the galaxy edge on, but not quite. From our perspective we can see that the Sombrero Galaxy has a large central bulge filled with stars, as well as a dust lane that cuts right across the central bulge. The Sombrero Galaxy is easily visible with small telescopes, making it a popular target for amateur astronomers.

This cosmic island is also known to harbour a supermassive black hole at its centre, making it a popular target for study among professional astronomers.

PC: NASA

THIS QUASAR IS DESTROYING ITS GALAXY!

This quasar is known as “J1342+0928”, and it lies at the center of its galaxy. In the center of this object, there is a supermassive black hole that is destroying nearby stars. This is currently the second farthest known Quasar at a distance of 13 billion light-years away from Earth!! 🤯🔥(The related supermassive black hole is reported to be 800 million times the mass of the Sun)

Credit: NASA, ESA, and J. Olmsted (STScI)

The Ring Nebula!

Credit: NASA, ESA, AND C. ROBERT O’DELL (VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY)

The Cartwheel Galaxy, one of the most unique in the universe.

Snap by NASA.

Clearest picture of Mercury ever taken | NASA

𝐍𝐀𝐒𝐀’𝐬 𝐖𝐞𝐛𝐛 𝐓𝐚𝐤𝐞𝐬 𝐒𝐭𝐚𝐫-𝐅𝐢𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐝 𝐏𝐨𝐫𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐭 𝐨𝐟 𝐏𝐢𝐥𝐥𝐚𝐫𝐬 𝐨𝐟 𝐂𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has captured a lush, highly detailed landscape – the iconic Pillars of Creation – where new stars are forming within dense clouds of gas and dust. The three-dimensional pillars look like majestic rock formations, but are far more permeable. These columns are made up of cool interstellar gas and dust that appear – at times – semi-transparent in near-infrared light.

Webb’s new view of the Pillars of Creation, which were first made famous when imaged by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope in 1995, will help researchers revamp their models of star formation by identifying far more precise counts of newly formed stars, along with the quantities of gas and dust in the region. Over time, they will begin to build a clearer understanding of how stars form and burst out of these dusty clouds over millions of years.

Newly formed stars are the scene-stealers in this image from Webb’s Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam). These are the bright red orbs that typically have diffraction spikes and lie outside one of the dusty pillars. When knots with sufficient mass form within the pillars of gas and dust, they begin to collapse under their own gravity, slowly heat up, and eventually form new stars.

What about those wavy lines that look like lava at the edges of some pillars? These are ejections from stars that are still forming within the gas and dust. Young stars periodically shoot out supersonic jets that collide with clouds of material, like these thick pillars. This sometimes also results in bow shocks, which can form wavy patterns like a boat does as it moves through water. The crimson glow comes from the energetic hydrogen molecules that result from jets and shocks. This is evident in the second and third pillars from the top – the NIRCam image is practically pulsing with their activity. These young stars are estimated to be only a few hundred thousand years old.

Although it may appear that near-infrared light has allowed Webb to “pierce through” the clouds to reveal great cosmic distances beyond the pillars, there are no galaxies in this view. Instead, a mix of translucent gas and dust known as the interstellar medium in the densest part of our Milky Way galaxy’s disk blocks our view of the deeper universe.

This scene was first imaged by Hubble in 1995 and revisited in 2014, but many other observatories have also stared deeply at this region. Each advanced instrument offers researchers new details about this region, which is practically overflowing with stars.

This tightly cropped image is set within the vast Eagle Nebula, which lies 6,500 light-years away.

The Pillars of Creation are set off in a kaleidoscope of color in NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope’s near-infrared-light view. The pillars look like arches and spires rising out of a desert landscape, but are filled with semi-transparent gas and dust, and ever changing. This is a region where young stars are forming – or have barely burst from their dusty cocoons as they continue to form.

Credits: NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI; Joseph DePasquale (STScI), Anton M. Koekemoer (STScI), Alyssa Pagan (STScI).

Other images from James Webb Telescope

(Pictures from Nasa.gov)

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David Marsh
David Marsh
David Marsh is a freelance writer and editor. He's also a long-time fan of science, technology and astronomy. Over the past five years, he has used his knowledge of astronomy to review over a dozen telescopes for buyers interested in learning more about what's available for amateur astronomers.