The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) was launched at 7:20am EST on 25 December 2021 from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, South America. It is with an international Partnership between NASA, European Space Agency (ESA) and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA). The James Webb Space Telescope launch was carried out on an Ariane 5 rocket.
The launch mission was successful. Webb’s mission operations centre in Baltimore, US, confirmed the spacecraft deployed its solar array and is in good condition. The Webb is expected to travel to its final destination, the second largest point of the Sun-Earth System (L2).
Why the name?
The Telescope is named after James E Webb. He was the NASA’s administrator from 1961 to 1968 who played an integral role in the Apollo Program. James Webb Telescope will succeed the Hubble Space Telescope as NASA’s flagship mission in Astrophysics.
The development of the Telescope was managed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Maryland and operations of the Webb is managed by Space Telescope Science Institute. The development started in 1996 and the initial launch date was planned for 2007. Due to major design changes and hurdles, the launch was delayed and finally launched on the 25th of December 2021.
James Webb Space Telescope is designed to provide improved infrared resolution and sensitivity over the Hubble Telescope. It will provide a range of services in the fields of Astronomy and Cosmology. The Telescope will also carryout observations of some of the most distant events and objects in the Universe like formation of the first Galaxy. It will also help in identifying potentially habitable exoplanets.
Read more about James Webb Space Telescope here