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The James Webb telescope is the largest telescope ever built and should yield significant information for science.

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the james webb space telescope a brief

THE JAMES WEBB SPACE TELESCOPE

A BRIEF INTRODUCTION

j ames w ebb

JAMES WEBB

Webb was formerly known as

the “Next Generation Space

Telescope” (NGST); it was renamed in

Sept 2002 after a former NASA

administrator, James Webb.

w ebb i s a n i nternational c ollaboration

WEBB IS AN INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION

National Aeronautics and

Space Administration

w ebb i s a n i nternational c ollaboration 1

WEBB IS AN INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION

+

National Aeronautics and

Space Administration

European Space

Agency

w ebb i s a n i nternational c ollaboration 2

WEBB IS AN INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION

+

+

National Aeronautics and

Space Administration

European Space

Agency

Canadian Space

Agency

w ebb i s a n i nternational c ollaboration 3

WEBB IS AN INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION

+

+

National Aeronautics and

Space Administration

European Space

Agency

Canadian Space

Agency

Managing The

Development Effort

Main Industrial

Partner

Operates Webb

After Launch

t he j ames w ebb s pace t elescope 2

THE JAMES WEBB SPACE TELESCOPE

Infrared

6.5

meter primary mirror

t he j ames w ebb s pace t elescope 3

THE JAMES WEBB SPACE TELESCOPE

Infrared

6.5

meter primary mirror

Hubble’s

primary mirror

t he j ames w ebb s pace t elescope 4

THE JAMES WEBB SPACE TELESCOPE

Infrared

6.5

meter primary mirror

Hubble’s

primary mirror

2018

launch date

h ow b ig i s w ebb 1

HOW BIG IS WEBB?

HUBBLE

TRACTOR-

TRAILER

h ow b ig i s w ebb 2

HOW BIG IS WEBB?

WEBB

HUBBLE

TRACTOR-

TRAILER

h ow b ig i s w ebb 3

HOW BIG IS WEBB?

WEBB

HUBBLE

TRACTOR-

TRAILER

BOEING 737

i nnovative t echnologies

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES

Folding, segmented primary mirror

i nnovative t echnologies 1

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES

Folding, segmented primary mirror

Ultra-lightweight beryllium optics

i nnovative t echnologies 2

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES

Folding, segmented primary mirror

Ultra-lightweight beryllium optics

Detection of extremely weak signals

i nnovative t echnologies 3

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES

Folding, segmented primary mirror

Ultra-lightweight beryllium optics

Detection of extremely weak signals

Microshutters

i nnovative t echnologies 4

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES

Folding, segmented primary mirror

Ultra-lightweight beryllium optics

Detection of extremely weak signals

Microshutters

Cryocooler

f our m ain s cience i nstruments o n w ebb

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE INSTRUMENTS ON WEBB

1

Near InfraRed Camera

(NIRCam)

f our m ain s cience i nstruments o n w ebb 1

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE INSTRUMENTS ON WEBB

2

1

Near InfraRed Camera

Near InfraRed Spectrograph

(NIRCam)

(NIRSpec)

f our m ain s cience i nstruments o n w ebb 2

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE INSTRUMENTS ON WEBB

2

1

3

Near InfraRed Camera

Near InfraRed Spectrograph

Mid-InfraRed Instrument

(NIRCam)

(NIRSpec)

(MIRI)

f our m ain s cience i nstruments o n w ebb 3

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE INSTRUMENTS ON WEBB

2

4

1

3

Near InfraRed Camera

Near InfraRed Spectrograph

Mid-InfraRed Instrument

Fine Guidance Sensor/

(NIRCam)

(NIRSpec)

(MIRI)

Near InfraRed Imager

& Slitless Spectrograph

(FGS-NIRISS)

i ntegrated s cience i nstrument m odule ism 1

INTEGRATED SCIENCE INSTRUMENT MODULE (ISM)

The ISM contains

the four instruments

i ntegrated s cience i nstrument m odule ism 2

INTEGRATED SCIENCE INSTRUMENT MODULE (ISM)

The ISM contains

the four instruments

i nfrared r ange

INFRARED RANGE

Webb\'s instruments will be designed to work primarily in the infrared range of the electromagnetic

spectrum, with some capability in the visible range. It will be sensitive to light from 0.6 (orange)

to 28 micrometers (µm) in wavelength.

i nfrared r ange 1

INFRARED RANGE

Webb\'s instruments will be designed to work primarily in the infrared range of the electromagnetic

spectrum, with some capability in the visible range. It will be sensitive to light from 0.6 (orange)

to 28 micrometers (µm) in wavelength.

Gamma Rays

X-Rays

UV Rays

Visible Light

Infrared

Microwave

Radio waves

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

10-5

0.2

0.4

0.75

1,000

i nfrared r ange 2

INFRARED RANGE

Webb\'s instruments will be designed to work primarily in the infrared range of the electromagnetic

spectrum, with some capability in the visible range. It will be sensitive to light from 0.6 (orange)

to 28 micrometers (µm) in wavelength.

Gamma Rays

X-Rays

UV Rays

Visible Light

Infrared

Microwave

Radio waves

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

10-5

0.2

0.4

0.75

1,000

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

i nfrared r ange 3

INFRARED RANGE

Webb\'s instruments will be designed to work primarily in the infrared range of the electromagnetic

spectrum, with some capability in the visible range. It will be sensitive to light from 0.6 (orange)

to 28 micrometers (µm) in wavelength.

Gamma Rays

X-Rays

UV Rays

Visible Light

Infrared

Microwave

Radio waves

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

10-5

0.2

0.4

0.75

1,000

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

Infrared Sensitivity of

Webb’s Instruments

0.6 µm

28 µm

i nfrared r ange 4

INFRARED RANGE

FGS/NIRISS

(0.8 to 5.0 µm)

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

Infrared Sensitivity of

Webb’s Instruments

0.6 µm

28 µm

i nfrared r ange 5

INFRARED RANGE

NIRSpec & NIRCam

(0.6 to 5 µm)

FGS/NIRISS

(0.8 to 5.0 µm)

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

Infrared Sensitivity of

Webb’s Instruments

0.6 µm

28 µm

i nfrared r ange 6

INFRARED RANGE

NIRSpec & NIRCam

(0.6 to 5 µm)

FGS/NIRISS

(0.8 to 5.0 µm)

MIRI

(5 to 28 µm)

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

Infrared Sensitivity of

Webb’s Instruments

0.6 µm

28 µm

i nfrared r ange 7

INFRARED RANGE

Near IR

Reveals:

•cooler red stars

(dust is transparent)

NIRSpec & NIRCam

(0.6 to 5 µm)

FGS/NIRISS

(0.8 to 5.0 µm)

MIRI

(5 to 28 µm)

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

Infrared Sensitivity of

Webb’s Instruments

0.6 µm

28 µm

i nfrared r ange 8

INFRARED RANGE

Near IR

Reveals:

•cooler red stars

(dust is transparent)

NIRSpec & NIRCam

(0.6 to 5 µm)

Mid IR

FGS/NIRISS

(0.8 to 5.0 µm)

MIRI

(5 to 28 µm)

Reveals:

•planets, comets, and asteroids

•dust warmed by starlight

•protoplanetary disks

Visible Light

Near Infrared

Mid Infrared

Far Infrared Rays

Wavelength in

microns (µm)

0.6

0.75

1.5

4

1,000

Infrared Sensitivity of

Webb’s Instruments

0.6 µm

28 µm

f our m ain s cience t hemes

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE THEMES

THE END OF THE DARK AGES:

FIRST LIGHT AND REIONIZATION

1

f our m ain s cience t hemes 1

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE THEMES

THE END OF THE DARK AGES:

FIRST LIGHT AND REIONIZATION

THE ASSEMBLY

OF GALAXIES

1

2

f our m ain s cience t hemes 2

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE THEMES

THE END OF THE DARK AGES:

FIRST LIGHT AND REIONIZATION

THE ASSEMBLY

OF GALAXIES

THE BIRTH OF STARS AND

PROTOPLANETARY SYSTEMS

1

2

3

f our m ain s cience t hemes 3

FOUR MAIN SCIENCE THEMES

THE END OF THE DARK AGES:

FIRST LIGHT AND REIONIZATION

THE ASSEMBLY

OF GALAXIES

THE BIRTH OF STARS AND

PROTOPLANETARY SYSTEMS

PLANETARY SYSTEMS

AND THE ORIGINS OF LIFE

1

2

3

4

t he l aunch 1

THE LAUNCH

Arianespace\'s ELA-3

launch complex

near Kourou, French Guiana

t he l aunch 2

THE LAUNCH

Arianespace\'s ELA-3

launch complex

near Kourou, French Guiana

t he l aunch 3

THE LAUNCH

Arianespace\'s ELA-3

launch complex

near Kourou, French Guiana

t he l aunch 4

THE LAUNCH

Arianespace\'s ELA-3

launch complex

near Kourou, French Guiana

t he l aunch 5

THE LAUNCH

Arianespace\'s ELA-3

launch complex

near Kourou, French Guiana

w ebb s o rbit

WEBB’S ORBIT

• Webb must be very cold

• Shielded from the heat of the Sun

AND the Earth

• Solution: L2 (Lagrange point)

L2

150 million km

1.5 million km

w ebb s o rbit 1

WEBB’S ORBIT

L4

• Webb must be very cold

• Shielded from the heat of the Sun

AND the Earth

• Solution: L2 (Lagrange point)

L2

L1

THE L2 LAGRANGE POINT

L3

150 million km

1.5 million km

Lagrange Points provide a stable

configuration in which three

bodies can orbit each other yet

stay in the same position relative

to each other.

L5

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

BIG

BANG

0

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee 1

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

BIG

BANG

COSMIC

MICROWAVE

BACKGROUND

0

.0004

(~400,000 yrs)

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee 2

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

DARK AGES

BIG

BANG

COSMIC

MICROWAVE

BACKGROUND

FIRST

STARS

0

.0004

.3

(~400,000 yrs)

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee 3

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

DARK AGES

BIG

BANG

COSMIC

MICROWAVE

BACKGROUND

FIRST

STARS

FIRST

GALAXIES

0

.0004

.3

1

(~400,000 yrs)

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee 4

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

DARK AGES

BIG

BANG

COSMIC

MICROWAVE

BACKGROUND

FIRST

STARS

FIRST

GALAXIES

MODERN

UNIVERSE

0

.0004

.3

1

13.7

(~400,000 yrs)

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee 5

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

HST GOODS /

CHANDRA DEPP FIELD

DARK AGES

BIG

BANG

COSMIC

MICROWAVE

BACKGROUND

FIRST

STARS

FIRST

GALAXIES

MODERN

UNIVERSE

0

.0004

.3

1

13.7

(~400,000 yrs)

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

h ow f ar b ack i n t ime w ill w ebb s ee 6

HOW FAR BACK IN TIME WILL WEBB SEE?

HST GOODS /

CHANDRA DEPP FIELD

DARK AGES

BIG

BANG

JWST

(13.4 billion years ago)

COSMIC

MICROWAVE

BACKGROUND

FIRST

STARS

FIRST

GALAXIES

MODERN

UNIVERSE

0

.0004

.3

1

13.7

(~400,000 yrs)

AGE OF THE UNIVERSE (billions of years)

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