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NASA Completes Mirror Polishing For James Webb Space Telescope
 
Mirrors are a critical part of a telescope. The quality is crucial, so completion of mirror polishing represents a major milestone. All of the mirrors that will fly aboard NASA's James Webb Space Telescope have been polished so the observatory can see objects as far away as the first galaxies in the universe.
The Webb telescope is comprised of four types of mirrors. The primary one has an area of approximately 25 square meters (29.9 square yards), which will enable scientists to capture light from faint, distant objects in the universe faster than any previous space observatory. The mirrors are made of Beryllium and will work together to relay images of the sky to the telescope's science cameras.

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Powerful telescope can see Big Bang

Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3 can look out into space and detect redshifts (speeds of objects moving away from us) of galaxies as far as 500 million years after the universe was formed, according to NASA.
With the Webb Space Telescope, scientists will be able to detect redshifts up to 20-180 million years before after the Big Bang.
Dmitry Vorobiev, another UNM research assistant professor, said the telescope will lend insight into current and future research.

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Webb Sunshield Like an Umbrella on the Shores of the Universe

The James Webb Space Telescope has a unique shield to protect its sensitive instruments from the heat and light of the sun. The sunshield is like an umbrella popping open on the shores of the cosmos that allows the instruments beneath it to see far into the universe.
Like a beach umbrella protects people from the sun's heat and ultraviolet radiation, the sunshield protects the telescope and the sensitive infrared instruments that fly beneath the Webb telescope's sunshield from our sun's heat and light.

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James Webb Space Telescope's "Chassis" Gets Taken Out for a Spin at NASA

The Integrated Science Instrument Module, or ISIM, is the structural heart of the James Webb Space Telescope, what engineers call the main payload. It will house the four main scientific instruments of the telescope. The ISIM is like a chassis in a car providing support for the engine and other components.
Webb will undergo significant shaking when it is launched on the large Ariane V rocket. To be sure the telescope's "chassis" is ready for this "bumpy road," the ISIM is subjected to some extreme testing.  During the testing process, the ISIM is spun and shaken while many measurements are taken. Afterwards, engineers compare the measurements with their models of the ISIM. If there are discrepancies, then the engineers track down why, and make corrections.

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Hot pixel mystery plagues delayed space telescope

Something strange is killing off pixels at an alarming rate in the detectors of a multi-billion dollar space telescope scheduled to launch in 2014.
The problem is just the latest blow for NASA's ultra-sensitive James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), which is expected to launch late and run over-budget.

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Webb Telescope Interactive Fly-by

Imagine flying around in space to examine a future space observatory thats under construction today. Thanks to animators and web developers, Internet users can get a fly-by tour of NASA's next-generation, tennis court-sized James Webb Space Telescope on their computer.
The interactive Fly-by tour can be found on the NASA Website.

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The Webb Telescope's Actuators: Curving Mirrors in Space

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope is a wonder of modern engineering. As the planned successor to the Hubble Space telescope, even the smallest of parts on this giant observatory will play a critical role in its performance. A new video takes viewers behind the Webb's mirrors to investigate "actuators," one component that will help Webb focus on some of the earliest objects in the universe.
The video called "Got Your Back" is part of an on-going video series about the Webb telescope called "Behind the Webb." It was produced at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, Md. and takes viewers behind the scenes with scientists and engineers who are creating the Webb telescope's components. During the 3 minute and 12 second video, STScI host Mary Estacion interviewed people involved in the project at Ball Aerospace in Boulder, Colo. and showed the actuators in action.

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A NASA report says the replacement for the Hubble Space Telescope is again over budget, by another $1.5 billion. Also, it will miss its already delayed 2014 launch.
An internal study says it will take about $6.5 billion to launch and run the James Webb Space Telescope. The cost of the telescope had already ballooned from $3.5 billion to $5 billion.

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The scale of the delay and cost overrun blighting Nasa's James Webb Space Telescope has been laid bare by a panel called in to review the project.
The successor to Hubble will probably cost at least $6.5bn to launch and operate, and may get into orbit by September 2015.

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NASA Holds Teleconference About Space Telescope Review Report

NASA will hold a media teleconference at 5 p.m. EST today to discuss an independent review panel's report on the status of the James Webb Space Telescope project.
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