Never been seen before! James Webb Telescope reveals ethereal star

    The James Webb Space Telescope unveiled its latest image of celestial majesty, an ethereal hourglass of orange and blue dust being shot out from a newly forming star at its centre.
    By: AFP
    | Updated on: Nov 17 2022, 20:13 IST
    NASA reveals stunning Jupiter images captured by James Webb Space Telescope
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    1/6 Amazingly, currently, on Jupiter, there are auroras, storms, extreme temperatures and powerful winds stirring things up, according to NASA. The images captured by the James Webb Space Telescope could give scientists a look at the conditions of the gas giant. (NASA)
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    2/6 Planetary astronomer Imke de Pater, professor emerita of the University of California, Berkeley said, “We hadn’t really expected it to be this good, to be honest. It’s really remarkable that we can see details on Jupiter together with its rings, tiny satellites, and even galaxies in one image.” (NASA)
    James Webb Space Telescope
    3/6 The images were captured by the telescope's Near Infrared Camera (NIRCam) instrument on July 27, which highlighted the planet's unique features. According to NASA, the NIRCam has three specialized infrared filters that showcase details of the planet. (AFP)
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    4/6 The image was created by compositing several images. Auroras are visible near the Northern and Southern poles of the planet. According to NASA, the auroras shine in a filter that is mapped to redder colors, which also highlights light reflected from lower clouds and upper hazes. (NASA)
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    5/6 The Great Red Spot as well as other clouds can be visible in the images as white since it is reflecting the sunlight. The Great Red Spot is a giant vortex which has been swirling around on Jupiter’s surface for a long time. Jupiter’s 2 moons, Amalthea and Adrastea can also be seen “photo-bombing” the planet. (REUTERS)
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    6/6 Thierry Fouchet, a professor at the Paris Observatory, as part of an international collaboration for Webb’s Early Release Science program said, “This one image sums up the science of our Jupiter system program, which studies the dynamics and chemistry of Jupiter itself, its rings, and its satellite system.” (NASA/AFP)
    NASA James Webb Space Telescope
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    NASA James Webb Space Telescope shows the Protostar within the dark cloud L1527 with ejections from the star above and below appear orange and blue in infrared view. (AFP)

    The James Webb Space Telescope unveiled its latest image of celestial majesty on Wednesday, an ethereal hourglass of orange and blue dust being shot out from a newly forming star at its centre.

    The colourful clouds are only visible in infrared light, so had never been seen before being captured by Webb's Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam), NASA and the European Space Agency said in a statement.

    The very young star, known as protostar L1527, is hidden in darkness by the edge of a rotating disk of gas at the neck of the hourglass.

    However light spills out from the top and bottom of the disk, lighting up the hourglass-shaped clouds.

    The clouds are created by material ejected from the star colliding with surrounding matter, the statement said. The dust is thinnest in the blue sections and thickest in the orange parts, it added.

    The protostar, which is just 100,000 years old and at the earliest stage of star formation, is not yet able to generate its own energy.

    The surrounding black disk, which is around the size of our solar system, will feed material to the protostar until it eventually reaches "the threshold for nuclear fusion to begin," the statement said.

    "Ultimately, this view of L1527 provides a window into what our Sun and solar system looked like in their infancy," it added.

    The protostar is located in the Taurus molecular cloud, a stellar nursery home to hundreds of nearly formed stars around 430 light years from Earth.

    Operational since July, Webb is the most powerful space telescope ever built, and has already unleashed a raft of unprecedented data as well as stunning images. Scientists are hopeful it will herald a new era of discovery.

    One of the main goals for the $10-billion telescope is to study the life cycle of stars. Another main research focus is on exoplanets, planets outside Earth's solar system.

     

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    First Published Date: 17 Nov, 13:22 IST
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