$10 Billion Space Origami - James Webb Telescope [Live: 25.12.2021, 12:20 UTC]
Arianespace is flying the James Webb Telescope to Langrange Point 2 (Lagrange Points - Sixty Symbols). It is often described as the successor to the Hubble telescope, but it detects infrared light instead of visible light. Because it is an infrared telescope, it needs to be as far away from the sun as possible, otherwise the sun's radiation would drown out everything else.
The larger the telescope, the more light it can gather, the better the images it can produce. To get around spatial restrictions of rocket nosecone volumes, the JWST has been folded up for launch and will unpack over a period of 2 weeks. There need to be 50 separate movements and the process has 344 single points of failure (Launching the World’s Biggest Space Telescope). Hair raising complexity for an expensive tool deployed in space.
Check out animations of the single deployment steps: NASA
What is the first data from JWST we can expect to hear about:
Launch mass is 6500kg. Minimum design life is 6 years.
Streams will start at different times before launch time:
Check your local time of launch at: www.timeanddate.com
Useful links to stay up to date on launches:
Spaceflightnow.com: Launch Schedule
Everyday Astronaut: Prelaunch Previews
NASA Spaceflight nasaspacefight.com
Vote for my witness: @blue-witness
Posted with STEMGeeks