T + T – normal size
The James Webb Space Telescope, the most powerful space science telescope ever built, was hit by a “dust-sized micrometeorite” in May.
The micro-meteorite collided with part of the main mirror of the telescope between May 23 and 25, the US space agency “NASA” said Wednesday.
NASA said the telescope was still “operating at a level that exceeds all mission requirements despite a detectable marginal effect in the data.”
And NASA added that the mirror is “designed to withstand impact from a micrometeorite environment.”
NASA’s Lee Feinberg said the telescope experienced four “smaller, measurable micrometeorite strikes”, but that one in late May was “larger than our predictions assumed.”
James Webb was launched into space on December 25 from the European spaceport of Kourou in French Guiana, nearly two years later than originally planned.
Scientists hope the telescope images will provide insight into the time after the Big Bang, about 13.8 billion years ago.
It took James Webb about 30 years to develop and cost about $10 billion. It follows the Hubble telescope, which has been in use for more than 30 years.
“Reader. Infuriatingly humble travel enthusiast. Extreme food scholar. Writer. Communicator.”