NASA on Tuesday unveiled the first image of the most powerful space telescope of all time, the breathtaking shots of James Webb, galaxies and nebulae that have begun scientific activity, awaited by astronomers around the world year after year.
“Each image is a new discovery”, NASA boss Bill Nelson said during the inauguration from the Goddard Space Center near Washington, where crowds of American and European space agency officials and scientists gathered for the event. Every offer “A view of the universe to humanity that we have never seen before.”
The contents of this original surprise bag have been carefully kept secret for so long to add suspense.
The Carina Nebula, located about 7,600 light-years away, depicts star formation. Snapshots show hundreds of them that have never been seen before, but galaxies in the background and structures that we still don’t know what they are.
A dead star
Perhaps most impressive for their details and the great contrast of blue and orange: pictures of two nebulae, huge clouds of gas and dust.
The Southern Ring Nebula is a so-called planetary nebula (although it has nothing to do with the planet): it is a huge cloud of gas surrounding a dead star.
– Stephen’s quintet
Another goal has been revealed: Stephen’s Quintet, a cluster of galaxies. A total of five scenes are visible in this spectacular image, four of which interact with each other in a truly gravitational dance. The two are combined.
– The galaxy
The last cosmic object whose observations were published on Tuesday was an exoplanet, a planet in orbit around a star other than our Sun, one of the main lines of James Webb’s research.
It was not actually photographed, but analyzed by spectroscopy, a technique used to determine the chemical composition of a distant object. In this case, WASP-96b, a giant planet composed primarily of gas.
Analysis of the light passing through the atmosphere as it passed in front of its star found the presence of water there, NASA said. James Webb’s predecessor, the Hubble Space Telescope, has detected water in the atmosphere of exoplanets in the past, but James Webb’s observations are much more detailed.
On Monday, a first image taken by a telescope, depicting cosmic distant times, was unveiled in the presence of U.S. President Joe Biden, who greeted a moment. “Historic”.
The shot, which is full of detail, shows galaxies formed immediately after the Big Bang more than 13 billion years ago.
One of James Webb’s main missions, the 10 10 billion engineering gem and the most powerful space telescope ever designed, is actually exploring a very young universe. The purpose of this first exhibition was to give an overview of its power in this area.
James Webb was sent into space from French Guiana about six months ago, on Christmas Day, by an Aryan 5 rocket. In the project since the 1990s, it is located 1.5 million kilometers away from Earth.