The prestigious science magazine “Science” announced that its editors have chosen to award the title of best scientific discovery of the year 2022 to the James Webb Space Telescope.
In a statement, the magazine praised the telescope for allowing researchers to reveal “the unfathomable past of the universe in astonishing and unprecedented detail.”
James Webb, since its launch last summer to explore the beginnings of the universe and the atmosphere of distant planets, has printed the year 2022 with exceptional images that raise hopes for major discoveries in the coming years. Since it was placed 1.5 million kilometers from Earth, the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, which is also still in service, has astonished astronomers with images of unprecedented resolution.
Also, the accuracy of its launch allows it to continue working for a period of no less than twenty years, after the guaranteed life expectancy was ten years.
The James Webb telescope was sent aboard an Ariane 5 rocket at the end of 2021, a long journey launched by the US Space Agency (NASA) more than three decades ago.
On the way to his final location, James Webb deployed a sunscreen the length of a tennis court, then deployed his 6.5-metre main mirror.
Once its controls were in place, with an accuracy of about a millionth of a meter, the mirror’s 18 petals began collecting light from the planets.
On July 12, 2022, the telescope presented five images that embody the extent of its capabilities, showing a constellation of thousands of galaxies, some of which date back to shortly after the Big Bang, 13.8 billion years ago, in addition to a star formation site in the Base Nebula.