May 16, 2017, Next year the James Webb Space Telescope will launch from Arianespace’s ELA-3 launch complex at European Spaceport located near Kourou, French Guiana (NASA, 2016). Meanwhile NASA continues to prepare for the launch and is currently preparing the large 18-segmented gold mirror for the testing at Johnson Space Center. In preparation for testing, the “wings” of the mirror (which consist of the three segments on each side) were spread open. This photo shows one fully deployed wing, and one that is moments from being fully deployed. An engineer observes the move.
The James Webb Space Telescope is the world’s most advanced space observatory. This engineering marvel is designed to unravel some of the greatest mysteries of the universe, from discovering the first stars and galaxies that formed after the big bang to studying the atmospheres of planets around other stars. It is a joint project of NASA, ESA (the European Space Agency) and the Canadian Space Agency (Loff, 2017.)
Loff, Sarah (2017). James Webb Space Telescope Primary Mirror Prepared for Testing at Johnson Space Center. NASA. Retrieved from: https://www.nasa.gov/image-feature/james-webb-space-telescope-primary-mirror-prepared-for-testing-at-johnson-space-center
NASA (2016). About JWST Launch. NASA. Retrieved from: https://jwst.nasa.gov/launch.html