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The first batch of James Webb Space Telescope Chief Observer Science Program selected



James Webb Space Telescope Artist's Thoughts

The James Webb Space Telescope is a space observatory that can understand the universe more deeply than ever before. It aims to answer unanswered questions about the universe and make breakthrough discoveries in all fields of astronomy. Weber will observe the first galaxy in the universe, reveal the birth of stars and planets, and look for exoplanets with life potential. Closer to home, Weber will also examine our own solar system from a new perspective. Image source: ESA / ATG medialab

Chief Observer NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space TelescopeThe first year of operation has been selected. Proposals from ESA member states accounted for 33% of the total number of selected proposals, equivalent to 30% of the telescope time available on Webb.

The NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope will be launched later this year to become the world’s most important space science observatory. Weber will solve the mystery about the solar system, study the distant world around other stars, and explore the mysterious structure and origin of our universe. Webb is an international program led by NASA and its partners, the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).

Weber’s mission officials announced that they had selected the “Universal Observer” program for the first year of the telescope, which is “Cycle 1”. These specific programs will provide the world’s astronomy community with the first broad opportunity to use Weber’s scientific goals for investigation. The selected proposals cover a wide range of scientific fields and will help fulfill the overall mission of ESA to deepen our understanding of the universe and its place in the universe.

Weber’s general observer time is extremely competitive. As a result, the proposal selection process is very strict. Members of the astronomy community are assigned to different groups covering a wide range of scientific topics. Of these, 52 are from ESA member states.due to Coronavirus disease The pandemic lasted for three weeks, and members spent countless additional hours to read and evaluate proposals.

A total of 1172 proposals were received before the deadline. Scientists from 44 countries/regions applied for part of the 6000 observation hours. This accounts for approximately two-thirds of all observation time in Cycle 1, and the rest is allocated to the Early Release Science and Guaranteed Time (GTO) program. Of the 266 observation proposals, 33% are from ESA member states, which is equivalent to 30% of the available telescope time for Webb in the first cycle. In addition, among the selected proposals, 41% will mainly use Webb’s NIRSpec instruments, while 28% will mainly use MIRI instruments.

“We celebrate the very successful partnership between the European Space Agency and our colleagues at NASA and CSA. We look forward to the beautiful images and spectra and amazing discoveries that Weber will obtain in the first year of observations,” Aerospace Europe Said Günther Hasinger, director of science of the bureau.

“At the European Space Agency, we are very pleased to see that the European astronomy community has made a huge participation and achieved great success in obtaining valuable observation time for this extraordinary mission of the James Webb Space Telescope,” Space Antonella Nota, head of the ESA office of the telescope, said: Baltimore Institute of Science (STScI).

ESA provided two instruments for the James Webb Space Telescope mission. This includes the entire NIRSpec instrument, which is a near-infrared spectrometer that can perform large-spectrum measurements on astronomical objects (such as stars or distant galaxies). ESA also owns 50% of MIRI instruments, which is the only instrument on the telescope that can work at mid-infrared wavelengths. The telescope will be launched from the Ariane 5 rocket launched from the French Guiana spaceport in Europe.

The full list of regular observer procedures is here.




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