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How the James Webb Space Telescope will unfold the universe - John C. Mather

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The James Webb Space Telescope is the world's most powerful telescope and humanity's latest attempt to answer questions like: "Where did we come from?" and "Are we alone?" Nobel Laureate John C. Mather, the leader of the team at NASA that built the Webb, explains how this miracle of modern science and engineering will help us observe the first galaxies, the birth of stars, and much more.

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Additional Resources for you to Explore
Learn more about the James Webb Space Telescope by checking out NASA’s website.

Follow the latest updates about the James Webb Telescope from NASA's blog.

Track the James Webb Space Telescope’s ongoing progress using NASA’s “Where is Webb?” tracker.

In 1995, scientists pointed the Hubble Telescope at an area of the sky near the Big Dipper. The location was apparently empty, and the whole endeavor was risky – what, if anything, was going to show up? But what came back was nothing short of spectacular: an image of over 1,500 galaxies glimmering in a tiny sliver of the universe. Alex Hofeldt helps us understand the scale of this image.

Deep in our solar system, a new era of exploration is unfolding. Beneath the thick ice of Europa; in the vapor plumes on Enceladus; and within the methane lakes of Titan, scientists are hunting for extraterrestrial life. These moons are ‘ocean worlds’— they contain liquid oceans, which can support the formation of life. Does life exist on ocean worlds? Augusto Carballido explores the possibility.

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  • Speaker John C. Mather