This is “one of the deepest photos of the universe ever taken.” It’s just an appetizer of what the James Webb promises

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There is less than a week left for the James Webb Space Telescope to finally show us the first official photo taken by its fully tuned instruments, but NASA has not been able to wait for offer us a small appetizer.

It is indeed an unexpected appetizer, because the image —here in full size— was taken with a sensor that isn’t even meant to “take pictures”. Despite this, he ended up capturing “one of the deepest images of the universe ever taken” according to NASA. And that without intending itwhich makes us think once again how much James Webb will reveal to us starting next week.

This is just the beginning

Last May, NASA wanted to test the behavior of the Fine Guidance Sensor (FGS), an instrument developed by the Canadian Space Agency and dedicated to one thing: finding and fixing the target of the observation.

Although this sensor is capable of taking images of the universe, the goal is to ensure that the sensors that are really dedicated to it do it with astronomical precision -and never better said-.

The images that are taken with that sensor for its operations are usually discardedespecially considering that the limited bandwidth to send data from James Webb to Earth means that only two instruments can send them at the same time.

However, in recent stability tests the engineering team wanted to keep the images because there was bandwidth available. The 72 captures with a total exposure of 32 hours over eight days they were combined for an image that NASA says is one of the deepest ever taken of the universe.

Those responsible for NASA have remained amazed at the result. Although the data does not allow us to study, for example, the age of the galaxies in the image, the FGS “is capable of producing spectacular views of the cosmos.”

This is how the James Webb Space Telescope is going to change the way we see the universe

Some of you may wonder why the center of some stars appear as a black dot. That is because “the James Webb detectors were saturated” they explain at NASA. The goal of the test was to see if the telescope could control its “turn”—take photos while turned on its side, like a plane in flight—and that image makes it clear that it could.

Not only that: this appetizer is a display of James Webb’s ability. If you have captured that image with a sensor not intended for it, we can’t even imagine what it will be able to capture with its specific sensors. In a few days we will finally begin to see these fruits.

There is less than a week left for the James Webb Space Telescope to finally show us the first official…

There is less than a week left for the James Webb Space Telescope to finally show us the first official…

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