As we await the solemn release of the first official images taken by NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, the first reactions to these long-awaited shots are already very promising.
“The images are being taken right now,” Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA science mission manager , told reporters on Wednesday . “There’s already some amazing science in the box, and more to come as we go. We are in the process of recording the data that will mark history”.
NASA plans to release several images on July 12. These are the first “first light” observations from the space telescope and a potentially revolutionary moment for the field of astronomy.
It’s a momentous event and emotions are already running high.
“What I saw moved me, as a scientist, as an engineer and as a human being,” Pam Melroy, NASA deputy administrator, told reporters.
Zurbuchen also admitted he was in his feelings about the new footage.
“It’s really hard not to look at the universe in a new light and not have a deeply personal moment,” he said at the press conference. “It’s an emotional moment when you see nature suddenly release some of its secrets, and I want you to imagine and look forward to that. »
The images are expected to include unprecedented views of the depths of the universe and the atmosphere surrounding a distant exoplanet, potentially giving us glimpses of a habitable world other than our own.
It’s the culmination of more than a decade of research and a $10 billion investment that could soon pay off.
No wonder the scientists working on the project are a bit emotional.