James Webb, space as a gift!

25 December 2021

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is the largest space telescope ever sent into orbit. Launched by an Ariane 5 rocket from Kourou shortly after Christmas, this NASA telescope developed jointly with ESA and the Canadian Space Agency appears as a gift to anyone who wants to learn more about the origin of the Universe. Related to the main key dates of the space conquest, Telespazio, 1st industrial partner of the Guyanese Space center, is part of this great scientific and human adventure.

After a setback during the preparations for take-off, which had required additional tests, this ultra-complex engineering jewel will be on its way to the L2 Lagrange point, 1.5 million kilometers from earth. This positioning will host the primary mirror of any light source coming from the center of the solar system and thus make it possible to observe permanently the sources of infrared light. An essential point because James Webb is designed to continue the discovering mission of the Hubble Space Telescope. If the first has discovered thousands of galaxies, participating in mapping the universe, the second will allow going further back in time. Galaxies, stars or nebulae already perceived by Hubble will be analyzed again with more precision and, very quickly, James Webb could detect new habitable exoplanets. This quest for scientific understanding, almost philosophical in some aspects, and this desire to create a technological link between space and Man are the beating heart of Telespazio's vision of space. Therefore, our group could not be stranger to this fantastic programme. Thus, in addition to the Telespazio France teams, associated with all the phases of the launch, Telespazio UK was involved in the engineering of the telescope.

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