SCEINCE

The launch of the James Webb Telescope has been delayed again. This time because of an “accident”

A “bracket incident” again delayed the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope. IN blog postThe National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has confirmed that after the incident, the readiness to launch was moved no earlier than December 22.

Scheduled to launch for the first time in 2007, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has seen a series of delays and cost escalations. Designed to replace aging Hubble, JWST will provide us with new ways to peek into space when it is deployed. To do this, however, its 21-foot-wide (6.5-meter) mirror must be unpacked just when the telescope is about a million miles (1.5 million km) from Earth. So NASA, the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency, which have also contributed financially and technically to the assembly of the telescope, are doing everything to ensure that it works without any problems.

Unfortunately, while the team was preparing to attach the telescope to the European one Ariana 5 rocket at Kourou satellite training facility in French Guiana that there was an accident. According to a NASA press release, the telescope has been attached to the launcher’s adapter, which will attach the first to the upper stage of the rocket.

Brackets are used during such a transfer to ensure that the payload is held firmly. However, one of the brackets was suddenly released in an unplanned manner, which sent “vibrations throughout the observatory,” NASA wrote in a blog post.

With a telescope weighing over 14,000 pounds (6,500 kg), one can imagine what vibrations must be felt in the facility. NASA has convened a team to investigate whether the incident caused damage to components. The team will perform additional tests on the spacecraft and provide an update by the end of this week.

Additional steps to be taken here will return the launch date by a few days, with NASA expecting the launch by December 22. Ars Technique reported that an unnamed senior source at NASA has confirmed that testing is advancing ahead of schedule and no serious problems have been identified so far.

Hopefully, this is the last of the delays that the magnificent space telescope must see on its way out.





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