The cheers for the successful and long-awaited launch of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) have not yet died down when the US space agency NASA comes ”with a new hurray message.
The US-European-Canadian telescope was launched on Saturday from a European Ariane-5 launch vehicle. The precision of that launch and two trajectory corrections left so much fuel that the telescope “will have significantly more than a 10-year life cycle,” according to NASA.
The basic expectation was five years. Instead, as an ambitious successor to the mythical Hubble Space Telescope (HST), the JWST will be able to look back in the infrared 200 million years after the Big Bang.
Now we have to wait for the mirror with a diameter of 6.5 meters and the sunshade as big as a tennis court to unfold.