天文学教室 談話会

last-update:2024/06/20

  第1791回 天文学教育研究センター/天文教室合同談話会

2024年6月25日(火) 16:00-17:00 @Lecture room, IoA, Univ. of Tokyo

Title: The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) – Humankind’s greatest space science facility
Speaker: James W. Beletic (Chief Scientific Officer, Teledyne Digital Imaging)
Language: English

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is NASA’s flagship astronomy and astrophysics mission that was launched on December 25, 2021 and is operating in a halo orbit at Lagrange Point 2 (L2), 1.5 million km from Earth. With a 6.5-meter diameter primary mirror that is cooled to 50K and four infrared instruments, JWST is investigating four major science areas: ・First light and reionization: JWST is a powerful time machine with infrared vision that is looking back 13.5 billion years to see the first stars and galaxies forming in the early Universe. ・Assembly of galaxies: JWST’s unprecedented infrared sensitivity enables astronomers to compare the faintest, earliest galaxies to today’s spiral and elliptical galaxies, helping us understand how galaxies assemble over billions of years. ・Birth of stars and protoplanetary systems: JWST can see into massive clouds of dust that are opaque to visible-light observatories (like Hubble), where stars and planetary systems are being born. ・Planets and origins of life: JWST is telling us more about the atmospheres of extrasolar planets, and perhaps will even find the building blocks of life elsewhere in the Universe. In addition to other planetary systems, JWST will also study objects within our own solar system.This presentation starts with the scientific motivation of JWST and reviews the major technological innovations that were needed to build the observatory. The four JWST instruments are presented with the optical path of the NIRSpec animated. The infrared focal plane arrays (FPAs) are presented and performance of the FPAs and telescope optics are reviewed; telescope performance is exceeding specification in spite of micrometeoroid hits on the primary mirror. The process of image data collection and processing is demonstrated by the iconic “Cosmic Cliffs” image (shown below). The presentation concludes with scientific examples that demonstrate the breadth of JWST capability and glimpse of the science that will be performed over the next two decades.

今後の予定

  • 2024年7月9日(火) 16:15-17:15 — 藤井通子(東京大学)
  • 2024年7月16日(火) 16:15-17:15 — 立石大(東京大学)
  • 2024年7月23日(火) 16:15-17:15 — Ella Wang (Australian National University)

 

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