Various reports have indicated that NASA seeks to launch the James Webb Space Telescope on Wednesday, December 22. This telescope is one hundred times more powerful than the 31-year-old Hubble Telescope and the largest & most expensive instrument ever flown. It is designed for more than 5 years with 10 years of operating life and will carry enough stuff on there to last for ten years. The silver shroud is a parasol at the bottom of the spacecraft and big as a tennis court to shield Webb from the sun. There are 21 feet of gold-plated mirrors, which are 6 times bigger than Hubble’s mirror to catch the earliest starlight in creation. Moreover, Webb features 18 hexagonal mirrors and they all work as one mirror to create a solid image.
Point to be noted that image would be invisible to the human eye, like a night vision camera. Webb is designed to see heat and infrared light and that’s the only signature left from the stars at the edge of time. The sun shield keeps Webb cold and dark because any infrared heat from the sun or earth would blind the telescope. The five layers are made of gossamer sheets, not unlike mylar birthday balloons. The layer facing the sun is layer one, and layer one reaches about 230 degrees Fahrenheit. It gets to negative 370 degrees Fahrenheit on the telescope side. There’s a roughly 600-degree difference between one side of the heat shield and the other. Telescopes really are time machines and they literally allow us to see into the past and the reason for that is just due to the nature of how light travels.
It is noteworthy that light from the sun takes about 8 minutes to get to the earth and we’re seeing the sun as it was 8 minutes ago. The Webb Telescope about dark matter is like we have a 14-billion-year-old story of the universe, but we’re missing that first chapter. Moreover, Webb was specifically designed to allow us to see those very first galaxies that formed after the Big Bang. Now, galaxies are born and then they evolve, they change over time, and this way that galaxies change must rely critically on dark matter and Webb is going to allow us to observe that process of galaxy evolution in much more detail. Webb was to launch 7 years ago but canceled in 2011, by the House Appropriations Committee and saved in the Senate. Now, the Webb is on the doorstep and aboard a European space agency rocket.