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James Webb telescope: How to watch NASA’s largest and most powerful space science telescope launch on Dec 24

Dec 20, 2021, 09:59 IST
Business Insider India
The James Webb space telescope is targeted to launch on December 24. NASA
  • The James Webb space telescope launch has been rescheduled to December 24 after two delays.
  • It’s going to be the world’s largest and most powerful space science telescope.
  • The James Webb space telescope will help scientists learn about the stars and galaxies that formed 100 million years ago.
NASA’s biggest launch of the year is set to take place on Christmas Eve. The James Webb space telescope has seen many delays with the project having started in 1989 and originally expected to launch in the early 2000s. But NASA is now aiming for a December 24 launch after two delays on December 18 and 22.

The James Webb space telescope could help reveal what the universe looked like 14 billion years ago after the Big Bang. It will succeed the famous Hubble telescope that launched in 1990 and is expected to continue for a few more years.

Here’s how to watch it live

The James Webb telescope is scheduled to launch at 7:20 am EST on December 24 which is 5:50 pm IST for Indian viewers. It will take off on an Arianespace Ariane 5 rocket from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. The launch will be livestreamed on NASA TV, NASA app and the agency’s website. The live coverage will begin one and a half hours before the targeted launch.

NASA’s James Webb telescope is designed to collect infrared light from very distant corners of the cosmos to help scientists learn more about the origins of our universe and how it came to be. The telescope has four infrared instruments to collect infrared light that is emitted from cosmic objects like stars and planets. The goal is ambitious as NASA hopes the telescope will study the first set of stars that came into existence in the universe.

The James Webb telescope is also expected to identify galaxies that may have formed when the universe was 100 million years old. It’s strong enough to see through dust clouds and a distance that the Hubble telescope is not capable of reaching.

Mission length

NASA says the James Webb telescope is designed to last for at least five and a half years but it could go on for more than 10 years. This lifetime is shorter compared to the Hubble telescope because of the amount of fuel used for maintaining the orbit, and the telescope’s components that could degrade over time due to the harsh environment in space.


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