play_arrow

keyboard_arrow_right

skip_previous play_arrow skip_next
00:00 00:00
chevron_left
volume_up
chevron_left
  • cover play_arrow

    Rother Radio (128k) Love Local, Love Music!

  • cover play_arrow

    Rother Radio (64K) Love Local, Love Music!

  • cover play_arrow

    Hit Music Radio (128K) More Music Variety!

  • cover play_arrow

    Hit Music Radio (64K) The Best Variety of Hits!

World News

James Webb Space Telescope begins ‘voyage back to the birth of the universe’ after ‘perfect’ launch

today25/12/2021

Background
share close

A $10bn (£7.5bn) space telescope has left Earth on a mission to give humankind its first glimpse of the infant universe.

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), which is the world’s most powerful, set off attached to an Ariane rocket from the Kourou spaceport in French Guiana at 12.20pm on Christmas Day.

It is designed to answer unsolved questions about the universe, and the telescope will look further back in time than ever before to 400 million years after the Big Bang, the UK Space Agency has said.

Arianespace's Ariane 5 rocket, with NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope onboard. Pic: NASA/NASA TV/Handout via REUTERS
Image: Arianespace’s Ariane 5 rocket, with NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope onboard. Pic: NASA/NASA TV/Handout via REUTERS

It was originally meant to launch on 24 December, but it was delayed after high-level winds were forecast.

Controllers were given a 30-minute window to launch the rocket beginning at 12.20pm, and successfully hit the beginning of the time slot.

As the rocket launched, NASA spokesman Rob Navias said: “Lift-off, from a tropical rainforest to the edge of time itself, James Webb begins a voyage back to the birth of the universe.”

Operators described the launch as “perfect” after the telescope separated from the rocket.

More on Nasa

Do aliens exist? The key mysteries that could be unlocked after the James Webb telescope launched

Preparation for the project began in 1996 and construction was completed in 2016.

The launch was first scheduled for earlier in December but it suffered several setbacks, including a communications issue and an incident requiring extra rounds of checks on the telescope.

The Ariane 5 rocket on the launchpad in French Guiana with the James Webb Space Telescope. Pic: NASA/Bill Ingalls
Image: The Ariane 5 rocket on the launchpad in French Guiana with the James Webb Space Telescope. Pic: NASA/Bill Ingalls

The JWST’s partners are the European Space Agency, NASA and the Canadian Space Agency.

Scientists from Durham University are among a team of 50 researchers from around the world taking part in the Cosmos-Webb programme, which will use JWST to survey a patch of sky near the constellation Sextans.

The cosmologists will map the dark matter around galaxies with the aim of unlocking the secrets of the mysterious substance that makes up the majority of matter in the universe.

An artist's rendering of what the telescope would look like in space. Pic: Northrop Grumman/NASA via AP
Image: An artist’s rendering of what the telescope would look like in space. Pic: Northrop Grumman/NASA via AP

Scientists said a “new era of astronomy” could be brought in with the launch.

The device is expected to profoundly transform scientists’ understanding of the universe and our place in it and the infrared telescope has been hailed as the premiere space-science observatory of the next decade.

 Sky News

© Sky News 2021

Written by: Rother Radio News


Previous post

UK News

Thousands receive ‘jingle jabs’ as they visit COVID vaccination sites on Christmas Day

Thousands of people have received COVID vaccinations at centres across England today as the NHS effort to get people boosted continues in the wake of surging case rates.Queues have been forming outside some pharmacies as people take up the offer of a Christmas Day jab. NHS staff and volunteers are giving up their time this Christmas to deliver vaccinations, with both pre-booked and walk-in appointments available in some sites in […]

today25/12/2021