The James Webb Telescope, cooling in the darkness of space, is ready for the first observation and the first pictures will drop on July 12. We have a list of cosmic objects that the powerful observatory targeted for its first full colour images and spectroscopic data.
These objects were selected by an international committee of representatives from NASA, ESA, CSA, and the Space Telescope Science Institute.
Carina Nebula: The Carina Nebula is one of the largest and brightest nebulae in the sky. It is home to many massive stars, several times larger than the Sun.
WASP-96 b: WASP-96 b is a giant planet outside our solar system, composed mainly of gas. The planet orbits its star every 3.4 days. It has about half the mass of Jupiter.
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Southern Ring Nebula: It is an expanding cloud of gas surrounding a dying star. It is nearly half a light-year in diameter and is located approximately 2,000 light years away from Earth.
Stephan’s Quintet: It is located in the constellation Pegasus. It is notable for being the first compact galaxy group ever discovered in 1877. Four of the five galaxies within the quintet are locked in a ‘cosmic dance’ of repeated close encounters.
SMACS 0723: These are massive galaxy clusters that magnify and distort the light of objects behind them, permitting a deep field view into both the extremely distant and intrinsically faint galaxy populations.
Launched last December, the $10 billion Webb is the largest and most powerful astronomical observatory ever sent into space. It will seek light emitted by the first stars and galaxies close to 14 billion years ago, and keep a sharp lookout for possible signs of life.
Positioned 1.6 million kilometers from Earth, Webb is considered the successor to the aging Hubble Space Telescope.
The flying observatory is tuned to find answers to the questions of how it all began and what happened moments after the big bang.