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Webb Space Telescope: How can it detect ‘life’s first chemical origins’?

  • Jonathan Amos
  • Science Correspondent – BBC

image copyright NASA/ESA/CSA/M.Zamani/F.Sun/Z.Smith/Ice Age Team

photo comment,

Chameleon 1: ice buried in a thin (blue) molecular cloud

The new James Webb Space Telescope has penetrated deep into the ice depths of space.

Webb searched some of the darker, cooler regions of space to find clues about the chemistry that goes into making planets, and possibly even life.

This newly released image shows part of the Chameleon I molecular cloud, or Chameleon 1, about 630 light-years from Earth.

Here, at temperatures as low as about -260 degrees Celsius, the Webb telescope is detecting types of ice grains that have not been observed before.