And now Jupiter in the eyes of the James Webb Space Telescope

Not only did the James Webb Space Telescope study celestial bodies millions or billions of light-years away, it also pointed its large mirror at Jupiter and its potentially habitable moon, Europe. Again, the result exceeds astronomers’ expectations.

That first images by James-Webb unveiled on July 12 and effectively inaugurated the scientific campaign for the largest and most powerful space telescope ever launched, amazed us with their discoveries on Tuesday. There is so much to say about each of them, from afarUniverse visited again – the deepest picture of the universe ever obtained » -, to planetary nebula from the southern ring that passes through a fog with its dizzying “reliefs” of detail, and not to mention the intertwined galaxies of Stefan’s Quintet, where one can even see stars individual … In short, already iconic images. An impressive leap forward in the details achieved by its instruments for cosmic objects tens of thousands of miles awaylight years… billions of light-years away. And “this is just the beginning!” (this is only the beginning), repeated it astrophysicists who attended their live presentations by Nasa.

And now, Jupiter!

Another surprise and beauty recorded on July 12 in the Mikulski archives of STSI (Space Telescope Science Institute) as part of the James-Webb commissioning, a well-known and nearby object: Jupiter. That astronomers are happy and do not hide their admiration for the quality of the images and data obtained.

Curious to see what it would be like to observe such a dense and radiant celestial body, they were not disappointed: these portraits of the largest planet in Solar system actually reveals its very discreet rings (picture of NIRCam), the moon Europa and the little ones Metis and Thebes. The images of Jupiter in the narrowband filters were designed to provide beautiful images of the entire planet’s disk, but the wealth of additional information about very faint objects (Métis, Thebes, the main ring, the nebulae) in these images taken with about a minute of exposure was a very pleasant surprise “says John Stansberry, who takes care of the NIRCam instrument.

As far as it is concerned Europeone of Jupiter’s four Galilean satellites (visible in binoculars), we can also see its shadow projected on Jupiter, just to the left of the famous Large red spot. This potentially habitable satellite, which protects a global ocean beneath a thick crust of ice, will be a privileged target for astronomers hoping to study and study its steam vents with the space telescope. “I think it’s just one of the coolest things we can do with this telescope in the solar system.”says Stefanie Milam, Planetary Science Researcher at GSFC (Goddard Space Flight Center) from NASA.

James Webb is not done surprising us, and the scientific images of the universe will rain down to our greatest pleasure and show us structures and objects that we had never seen before.

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