Technology NASA wants to train the James Webb Space Telescope on gas giants before searching for habitable worlds

15:56  12 july  2018
15:56  12 july  2018 Source:   bgr.com

NASA's Kepler Space Telescope Is Running Out of Fuel and May Not Have Much More Time

  NASA's Kepler Space Telescope Is Running Out of Fuel and May Not Have Much More Time NASA’s storied Kepler Space Telescope—the craft which has discovered thousands of exoplanets since its launch in 2009—is entering the retirement phase of its lifespan. NASA announced on Friday that Kepler staff had “received an indication that the spacecraft fuel tank is running very low” and “placed the spacecraft in a hibernation-like state in preparation to download the science data collected in its latest observation campaign.

When NASA finally sends its mega-powerful James Webb Space Telescope it will be the end of a But as NASA explains in a new blog post, learning how to properly harness the telescope ’s power won’t be an overnight affair, and it’s going to need a bit of training before it can really flex its muscles.

Women with diverse jobs on the James Webb Space Telescope answered questions about the female experience working on a NASA flagship mission in the TwoXChromosomes subreddit. Q: Isn't presence of magnetic field critical in search for habitable planets? (hitchens).

  NASA wants to train the James Webb Space Telescope on gas giants before searching for habitable worlds © Provided by BGR

When NASA finally sends its mega-powerful James Webb Space Telescope it will be the end of a long and troubled road, but it will also be the beginning of an extremely exciting time for astronomers. The telescope’s primary duty will be to sniff out exoplanets and learn more about them, potentially even detecting planets that would be suitable for human settlement after Earth.

But as NASA explains in a new blog post, learning how to properly harness the telescope’s power won’t be an overnight affair, and it’s going to need a bit of training before it can really flex its muscles. To help scientists get a handle on how the powerful instrument works they’re going to point it at larger targets first, like massive gas giant exoplanets.

Behold the Haunting Beauty of a Distant Star Cluster

  Behold the Haunting Beauty of a Distant Star Cluster A new image of star cluster RCW 38, an area strewn with young, hot, massive stars, is providing an unprecedented glimpse into a tumultuous region of space located 5,500 light-years from Earth. This exquisite view of RCW 38 was made possible by the HAWK-I infrared imager mounted on the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile. This instrument can pierce through dusty star clusters, revealing details like individual stars, glowing gases, and long streams of cosmic dust. Star cluster RCW 38 is in the constellation of Vela, and it’s packed with young stars and protostars still in the process of forming.

The James Webb Space Telescope ( JWST ) has a giant sunshield that divides the craft in two: one side facing the sun, which will power the device, and another to The telescope will now be subjected to two years of tests before its planned launch in 2018. James Webb space telescope . Nasa .

Compared with what we can do today, here's a look at six things a giant space telescope like this This figure shows the real stars in the sky for which a planet in the habitable zone can be observed. While James Webb will be NASA 's flagship astrophysics mission of the 2010s and WFIRST will fly in

“We have two main goals,” Jacob Bean, a co-principal investigator studying exoplanets, explains.” The first is to get transiting exoplanet datasets from Webb to the astronomical community as soon as possible. The second is to do some great science so that astronomers and the public can see how powerful this observatory is.”

That all sounds lovely, but first NASA has to actually get the thing into space. For a project that is eating up cash like crazy, that’s actually a lot harder than it might sound. The James Webb Space Telescope is a long, long time coming. You may have recently read about how NASA was forced to push back the launch of the telescope to 2021, but that’s really just the tip of a very large iceberg.

When the work first began on the telescope back in 1997 (!), the original launch was slated for 2007. Since then, the telescope has seen no fewer than 14 significant delays, and a cost increase from an initial budget of $500 million to nearly $10 billion. Much of this falls on Northrop Grumman, the contractor that was hired to build the telescope, and an independent review has found that countless stupid human errors like lost fasteners and incorrect cleaning agents have cost hundreds of millions of dollars to correct.

The telescope will eventually be finished (we hope) and once it is, there’s no telling what new things it might teach us about space and nearby planets. NASA promises that it will be worth the wait, and those are big words when it comes to a nearly $10 billion dollar project that is well over a decade late already. We’ll just have to wait and see.

NASA Reveals Amazing 'Celestial Fireworks' Image .
The image was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope.The stars reside in the center of a nebula—a vast cloud of interstellar gas and dust—known as NGC 3603, located around 20,000 light-years from Earth in the constellation Carina. In the central region of this nebula is a huge cluster of young, hot stars.

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