NASA's $10 billion James Webb Telescope permanently damaged after being hit by micrometeoroid: Report

The scientists informed that since the launch, the Webb telescope has been struck by six micrometeorites.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Wednesday, July 20, 2022, 06:16 PM IST
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James Webb Telescope developed by NASA | Photo: Twitter/ NASA

The world’s largest telescope, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), built by NASA, was damaged permanently and irreparably, says a new report.

As per the scientists, the damage sustained to the telescope took place during a micrometeoroid strike in late May 2022.

According to the Forbes report, scientists have reported problems that “cannot be corrected”.

Writing about the projected lifetime of the Webb telescope, the researchers said, “At present, the largest source of uncertainty is long-term effects of micrometeoroid impacts that slowly degrade the primary mirror,” Forbes reported.

The scientists informed that since the launch, the Webb telescope has been struck by six micrometeorites.

However, the reports suggest that as the damage has taken place on one of the panels, it will not impact the Webb telescope’s image-taking abilities at all.

Providing more information regarding the asteroid strike, LiveScience reported researchers as saying, “The micrometeoroid which hit segment C3 in the period 22—24 May 2022 UT caused a significant uncorrectable change in the overall figure of that segment. However, the effect was small at the full telescope level because only a small portion of the telescope area was affected.”

The $10 billion space telescope was launched on Christmas Day in 2021. Earlier this month, NASA revealed the first of many images that it captured of deep space captured by the James Webb Space Telescope.

The world's biggest and most powerful space telescope rocketed away last December from French Guiana in South America. It reached its lookout point 1.6 million kilometres from Earth in January.

The first image from the Telescope was released last week at the White House.

(with sources inputs)

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