NASA's new telescope may show us signs of life that are close to Earth

NASA's new James Webb telescope is launching next month, and the 'most exciting' thing about it may be its ability to see 'close'.

Published Tue, Aug 10 2021 3:32 AM CDT   |   Updated Fri, Sep 10 2021 10:42 PM CDT

Next month, NASA is expected to launch the telescope that is poised to replace the famous Hubble Space Telescope.

NASA's new telescope may show us signs of life that are close to Earth 01 |

The new telescope is dubbed the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), and due to its upgraded hardware, the telescope is expected to usher in a slew of new cosmic discoveries. The New Yorker described the JWST as a "potentially revolutionary instrument" as it will be able to see further into space than any other space telescope currently available, allowing astronomers to peer further back in time than ever before.

While being able to see the infancy of the universe has its own uses, it may not be the most exciting aspect of the telescope. David Helfland, an astronomer at Columbia University, spoke to The New Yorker and said that the JWST will be able to see "very far away" and "very close", and the latter of the two "in some ways may be the most exciting" because "it's about looking at planets that are not too different from Earth."

The JWST will not only be used to search for distant cosmic objects but also ones that are relatively close to Earth. Researchers will use the telescope to inspect planets for signs of life, such as oxygen being present in the atmosphere. However, that all depends on the launch being successful, and NASA has already warned that if you aren't "terrified" for the launch, you don't understand what the space agency is trying to do - more on that story here.

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science and space news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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