The James Webb Space Telescope is midway towards getting its instrument modes tested for science undertakings, which are anticipated to begin mid-July.
The James Webb Space Telescope is equipped with four cutting-edge instruments, which will facilitate the $10 billion observatories to discern the most distant, oldest galaxies, created in the early universe only a few hundred million years after the Big Bang, and review their chemical composition. These devices have 17 science modes between them, and every science mode must be tested before the telescope can initiate science operations in mid-July.
“As of today, 7 out of Webb’s 17 instrument modes are ready for science,” NASA announced on Twitter this Friday.
“Each mode has a set of observations and analysis that need to be verified,” Jonathan Gardner, the James Webb Space Telescope deputy senior project scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, clarified in a blog post on May 12th. “Some of the modes won’t be verified until the very end of commissioning,”
Gardner announced that for each of the 17 modes, the team assigned a “representative example science target” that will be examined during the first year of Webb’s science operations, named Cycle 1.
“These are just examples,” Gardner added. “Each mode will be used for many targets, and most of Webb’s science targets will be observed with more than one instrument and/or mode.”