Exciting new images of Jupiter captured by the James Webb Space Telescope

The latest photos from the James Webb Space Telescope show that it is capable of seeing more than just cosmic objects that are far away from Earth. NASA has unveiled Webb’s first images of our own solar system, including shots of Jupiter and circling asteroids. According to Mashable, these images were taken by engineers while the observatory’s instruments were being tested. The pictures show that Webb is able to pick up blurry objects while simultaneously seeing unique details on objects moving near Earth. The telescope’s guiding sensor, which enables Webb to point, capture and track with precision, is to thank for this feat.

According to Klaus Pontopidan, an astronomer at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, NASA officials debated placing local targets in the initial batch of breathtaking far-space photos, but ultimately chose a more cautious course. “We didn’t want to rely on working target observations, not keeping things too complicated,” he said. “As it actually turns out, we probably could have done that.”

After the first set of full-color scientific photographs of Webb were unveiled by NASA, the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency two days ago, further images were released. For the $10 billion telescope, the occasion marked the beginning of science operations. According to astronomers, Webb is expected to usher in a golden age in the study of the universe.

According to NASA, the images of Jupiter don’t look as vivid as we saw on Tuesday, because they weren’t processed in the same way. Instead, they look like sepia-toned photographs. These were created to highlight certain features. A view from the telescope’s near-infrared camera shows clear bands around the gas giant planet, as well as the Great Red Spot, a permanent storm large enough to “swallow Earth,” according to NASA. To the left of the spot is the shadow of Europa, one of the moons orbiting Jupiter.

Other moons in these images include Thebe and Metis. The US space agency said all these details were captured with an exposure of about one minute.

Scientists are relieved that the James Webb Space Telescope has passed its vision test. Astronomers also look to probe vapor plumes emanating from Europa and Saturn’s moon, Enceladus; Places that can close off the oceans.

The team also wanted to know how fast an object can move and still be seen by binoculars, which is important for astronomers who want to study flying space rocks. To test Webb’s limits, engineers attempted to track an asteroid in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter; 6481 Tenzing. They were not disappointed. “Our speed limit was 30 million seconds per second, which could be as fast as Mars,” said Jane Rigby, a NASA project scientist. “We really broke it. We managed to get the speed limit of 67, so we can track targets faster than we promised.”

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