NASA announced that the space telescope “James Webb” will not be able to start in March 2021, as previously planned. It is noted that the device operation was going according to plan until the start of the pandemic coronavirus.
The statement was made at a joint meeting of the Council of space research 2020 and Aeronautics and space engineering. It was noted that NASA switched to remote work to combat the spread of the virus, and this greatly slowed the development of many missions.
When will launch telescope
Now the Agency had not discussed a new planned launch date. Probably the decision will be made next month. However, the Deputy administrator of the science mission Directorate of NASA Thomas Zurbuchen expressed hope that the launch will take place in 2021.
The cancellation of the planned launch was not a surprise. In the report of the accounts chamber of the USA in January this year said that the chance to run, “James Webb” in March 2021 account for only 12%. Such assessments were expressed even before the pandemic. Overall, since 2007, the planned launch date was postponed several times, and the price of the project is 9.8 billion dollars. Moreover, the problems started when preparing ready the Observatory for testing.
What will trigger the telescope “James Webb”
The new Observatory is intended to be the successor of the Hubble space telescope. The Ariane 5 with the telescope will launch from French Guiana, and it will go to the point L2 of the system Sun – Earth (Lagrange point) about 1.5 million km from Earth.
What will telescope in space
The work of “James Webb” is based on finding traces of infrared light, in fact, heat. To detect very weak thermal signals of astronomical objects in the far distance, the telescope must have stable low temperature.
Video shows a test deployment portable tower telescope:
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