From the ancient ages, the human race was curious about what was happening in space. With the building curiosity, scholars started noticing any development in the sky. The issue was with naked eyes; there were only a few things like the sun, the moon, and a few other stars that they would monitor. With that bit of knowledge, they made various speculations. Although some of those observations were right, like Earth is spherical, others were absurd. Things like Earth is fixed, but the sun and the stars are moving. People thought that was the truth for many centuries, but everything changed with time.
In the early 17th century, famous astronomer, physicist, and engineer Galileo Galilei revolutionized astronomy after applying a telescope to study the universe. Since then, many physicists have modified the telescope to make it optically more powerful. The telescope was first invented in the 17th century; in the beginning, the primary use of the telescope was for military purposes—things like keeping an eye on an enemy from a distance. Later when Galileo build his telescope to observe the ways of the universe. However, the initial telescope was not powerful enough to see very far; with his determination, hard work, and knowledge, Galileo increased the magnification of the telescope.
With the invention of the telescope, our curiosity about the universe grew more and more with time. At present, various space research organizations exist; although most of them are government-led, there are few exceptions. All the major countries worldwide are trying to find new stars and planets around the universe. No human being cannot possibly go everywhere; not only is it expensive, but also that would be life-threatening. So they came up with the plan to place a telescope on Earth’s orbit, or they will send it far away into space to observe the universe. Infrared Telescopes are very powerful and can quickly look into the centre of different galaxies.
In December 2021, NASA announced that they launched the James Webb telescope. According to scientists, it is one of the most powerful telescopes ever launched. It took NASA around 10 billion dollars to create the James Webb Space Telescope. Many scientists believe that there are other planets out there where life is present. JWST can answer all the questions tormenting scientists for the past 50 years; it can give us breakthroughs.
OVERVIEW OF JAMES WEBB SPACE TELESCOPE
James Webb Telescope is the largest telescope ever been put into space; the design is superior in technology. One of the challenges it faced in the initial stages was it needed a gigantic sized mirror to collect light. The other challenge it had to tackle was keeping cool so that the light could be observed without any interference from the unwanted infrared source. The primary mirror in the James Webb telescope is enormous; it allows it to collect enough infrared light. There is also a gigantic sun shield to keep it cold. Because of the massive size of the mirror and the sun shield, it wasn’t easy to fit in the launching vehicle. The engineers had to be very creative with the solution; they turned it into an enormous Japanese origami that could swiftly fold itself at the time of launch. Afterwards, it will be back to its standard size and observe universes million miles away from the Earth.
JWST is a highly ambitious engineering project capable of rewriting history; it will give humankind’s space expedition a whole new shape. With the help of the James Webb Space Telescope, we can know about the history of our universe, and we can get an idea about our beginning. Here are six reasons why James Webb Space Telescope is so important, and if it becomes a success, the things it can achieve.
JWST Is powerful:
According to the scientist of NASA, James Webb Space Telescope is the biggest and most powerful telescope that has even been sent to space. Although there are other telescopes on the ground, nothing compared to this; this is truly one of a kind. It is ten times more potent than its predecessor, the Hubble. The mirror present in James Webb is far more significant and superior to Hubble’s mirror. The James Webb Space Telescope can peer far back into time by having a larger area to capture the light. Also, James Webb would be 1.5 million kilometres away from Earth’s orbit.
Can take us back to the initial phase of our universe:
For centuries, humans have been obsessed with the idea of the creation of this galaxy; there were numerous theories about, many well-known scientists have spent their entire life to figure out how the Earth, the planets, the solar system and universe were created. After going through many theories and observing the universe for years and decades, we still are not fully aware of the universe’s history. How it became what it is now. Previously with the Hubble, we were able to observe other galaxies. Still, the issue was those universes were pretty new compared to ours but not exactly what we were looking for. In terms of age, they were in their teens, but we need to observe a universe with babies. To know about the beginning of our universe, we can study other universes at their early stages. Other than that, we can also characterize planets and search for the ocean, atmosphere, and different substances. It will give us a fair idea of how our planet was initially.
It will help us find new elements in the universe:
With the help of Webb, researchers will also be able to find new elements like asteroids and unknown planets. The unrevealing the history of such planets and asteroids, they are also hoping that they will learn new things about our solar system and planet. This will open a universe of different possibilities. There were various other telescopes before James Webb Space Telescope, but none was powerful enough to observe elements so far. Still, with it, we can find different planets and know about their atmosphere, the elements and chemicals that are present there.
With its help, we might be able to map the universe:
Although it will be an overstatement to say that the James Webb Telescope can tell whether there is life on other planets or not, it can accurately map out the entire space. It helps investigate the universe and gives the researcher a road map to probe further. James Webb space telescope will be vital in finding newly forming planets and stars; these planets and stars mostly hide behind light-absorbing dust. And as Webb look at the universe in the infrared, it can penetrate the dust that absorbs light.
We might find a new Earth with its help:
The endgame of such a space expedition is not only observing the universe but also finding a planet that has an atmosphere similar to the Earth. Scientists worldwide plan to investigate the nature of dark energy and are trying to understand all the ancient objects in space; they will characterize every planet, and in this process, they might find something similar to the Earth. The Hubble was also designed to do the same thing but was unsuccessful with its task.
It is technologically superior:
The potential of the James Webb Space Telescope is limitless. According to many scientists, it can change the shape of space expedition; it can drastically change our knowledge about the cosmos. Not only will we be able to observe and examine the universe better, but also technologically, it will put us in a superior position. The technology we created for this telescope can also be used in other sectors. For example, the mirror that is used in the telescope can also be helpful in eye surgery.
The ultimate goal of the James Webb Space Telescope is to find a planet that is similar to our Earth, but the task is not as easy as it seems because a planet like Earth is likely to be very rare in the neighbouring solar system. It is most likely that Webb will observe gas giants like Saturn and Jupiter and ice giants like Neptune. It can also observe planets in our solar system better than before, and we might get to gather various other facts about them. James Webb Telescope is a technological miracle; scientists and engineers spent years creating it. At Hubble’s launch, exoplanets were a part of science fiction, but studying exoplanets became the primary task. Let’s see what the James Webb Space Telescope offer us.