The James Webb Telescope has reached another milestone as the backplane of the telescope was transported to the Marshall Center for testing. Space is an incredibly harsh environment, and the various components of the telescope need to be tested.
Within the backbone for the Webb telescope are 18 beryllium mirrors. Similar in concept to a regular telescope, these mirrors will help give the Webb its reach into seeing deep space. Engineers at the Marshall Center will be testing the backbone and mirrors at some extreme temperatures to simulate being in space. Cryogenic testing will bring the temperature down to -414°F inside a giant vacuum chamber.
Once these tests are completed, the Webb Telescope will be one step closer to launching. We’ll keep you posted as details progress, and you can view more pictures of the backbone transportation via NASA’s website.