Ames Contributions to NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope

Webb Space Telescope: NASA launch the James Webb Space Telescope in 2018 to aid in their exploration of Mars and beyond. Ames is one of the contributing organizations for the JWST project, providing the T4B (Thermal Emission Imaging Spectrograph) instrument. This instrument uses infare light and a combination of visible-light cameras to study the corona and other regions of star formation over time. The thermal emission spectrograph is design to provide NASA with high-resolution images that can be useful when studying objects such as protoplanetary disks or distant stars. Find out more about what Ames has contribute on this article!


Ames Research Center, locate in Ames, Iowa, is one of the premier research institutes in the Unite States. It was found in 1952 and today employs over 3,000 people. Ames is responsible for a wide range of scientific endeavors, including work on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), which is a large space observatory that is schedul to launch in 2021.

JWST will be the successor to Spitzer Space Telescope and Hubble Space Telescope. It will be able to see farther into space than any other telescope and it will be able to look at different parts of the universe at the same time. Ames has play an important role in designing and building JWST. The center has develop many of the technologies that will be use in the observatory, including optics, infare detectors, and actuators.

Ames Research Center is also responsible for some of JWST’s scientific instruments. These instruments include a near-infrar camera call NIRCam and an advance spectrograph call SPICE. Both instruments are crucial for taking pictures and analyzing data from JWST’s observations.

What is the James Webb Space Telescope?

The James Webb Space Telescope is a giant telescope that will be launch into space in late 2018. It is name after James Webb, the first American to walk in space. The telescope will be able to see farther and clearer than any other telescope, allowing scientists to learn more about the origins of the universe, stars, and planets. Ames Contributions to the James Webb Space Telescope (project development, designing, manufacturing and testing).The Ames Research Center (ARC) has been a primary contributor to the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) project development, designing, manufacturing and testing. ARC engineers have play critical roles in developing the telescope’s optics, instrumentation and spacecraft.

Webb Space Telescope

The JWST is a joint project of NASA and the European Space Agency. The telescope will be dedicat to exploring the origins and evolution of the universe. It will be the largest space observatory ever built, with a combined aperture of 3.6 meters (12 feet). ARC engineers are responsible for designing and building three of the JWST’s five main instrument modules: the Near-Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec)

, Mid-Infrared Instrument (MIRI) and Low-Temperature Infrared Camera & Spectrometer (LTI). ARC also contributes to the design and fabrication of two instruments on the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph satellite which will serve as calibration targets for JWST: the Near-Infrared Imager/Spectrometer (NIIRFS) and Fine Guidance Sensor Unit/Imaging Millimeter Array Camera & Submillimeter Telescope (FGS/IMACS). The team at ARC is also responsible for assembling, testing and launching JWST into space.

Technologies used in constructing the James Webb Telescope?

James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is a pioneering astrophysics mission that will be the most powerful space telescope ever built. The JWST will be composed of a 6.5-meter primary mirror, 2.4-meter secondary mirror, six sunshields, and three instrument modules: an infrared observatory, a mid-infrared observatory, and a central detector.

The infrared observatory will collect light in the thermal spectrum from objects within the Milky Way and neighboring galaxies. The mid-infrared observatory will observe emission in the range 1.6 to 12 microns from stars and galaxies located up to 10 billion light years away, making it possible to study the earliest stages of star formation and examine the populations of active galactic nuclei. The central detector will collect data on faint objects across all these wavelengths in order to create a comprehensive view of the universe.

Tools used in constructing the James Webb Telescope?

The James Webb Space Telescope is a large, expensive project that will be able to see farther into space than any other telescope. It will be able to see objects that are billions of years away. The telescope needs many different tools to make it work. These tools include:

  • A telescope mirror
  • A mirror support system
  • A sunshield
  • An observatory building
  • Instruments and software
  • A spacecraft


Ames Research Center has played a pivotal role in the development of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope. Ames scientists led the effort to develop new technologies needed for the telescope, including cryogenic cooling and advanced optics. The team also worked on spacecraft design that would carry the instrument to space. So more than 25 years of experience working on high-profile projects such as this one, Ames is well-equipped to help deliver on JWST’s ambitious goals.

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