FSU astrophysics program advances with NASA technology

The Carina Nebula, 7,600 light-years away, as seen by the James Webb Space Telescope. This is one of the first five images NASA released on July 12.

The Florida Department of Astrophysics has made progress since the December 12 launch of the James Webb Space Telescope. On January 25, 2021, three professors at FSU have begun their first observational cycle of research.

When NASA launched the James Webb Space Telescope last Christmas, there was little assurance that it would reach its destination safely. After a million miles of travel, the telescope must still be carefully deployed from its stowed launch position, cooled to below minus four hundred degrees Fahrenheit, and calibrated for its first observations.

Still, NASA scientists are well-positioned to make this feat of engineering look easy.

In Tallahassee, the Challenger Learning Center hosted a viewing party to celebrate NASA’s July 12 release of the telescope’s five first images.

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