Looking back in time to the creation of stars and the beginning of our own solar system, the James Webb Space Telescope will be a giant leap forward in space telescope technology. Hubble has done a great job capturing amazing photos of the cosmos but the James Webb telescope will give us a study of the universe unparalleled in modern astronomy.
Here is the latest information on the launch date and the mission of the telescope (courtesy of the James Webb Space Telescope website):
The James Webb Space Telescope (sometimes called JWST or Webb) will be a large infrared telescope with a 6.5-meter primary mirror. The telescope will be launched on an Ariane 5 rocket from French Guiana in October of 2018.
JWST will be the premier observatory of the next decade, serving thousands of astronomers worldwide. It will study every phase in the history of our Universe, ranging from the first luminous glows after the Big Bang, to the formation of solar systems capable of supporting life on planets like Earth, to the evolution of our own Solar System.
The full-scale James Webb Space Telescope model at South by Southwest in Austin.
Credit: NASA/Chris Gunn