James Webb’s newest photos



James Webb’s 18-segmented mirror designed to capture infrared light.

The James Webb telescope is currently the largest optical telescope in space conducting infrared astronomy. It launched on Dec. 25, 2021, and since its activation, it has been sending back photos of unseen galaxies and new stars.
The telescope has four main goals: to search for the light of the first stars and galaxies in the Big Bang, to study the origins of life, to learn more about star and planet formation, and to study how galaxies are formed and evolve.
“Every once in a while I like to search for more new space photos from the James Webb Telescope. They are so pretty and cool. All the different colors from galaxies are cool,” freshman, Alexandra Holt said.
Recently, the James Webb telescope sent back photos of a fiery, swirling galaxy nicknamed the Phantom Galaxy. This galaxy had gone unseen before, but James Webb’s ability to see in infrared allows it to see through dust clouds that block the view of other telescopes. The Phantom Galaxy is 32 million light years away from Earth and part of the constellation Pisces.
“It’s sometimes hard to believe the photos that come back. They are so detailed and clear that it doesn’t seem possible to build technology to see that,” sophomore, Luke McLaine said.
Spiral galaxies are created when stars release energy and create large spheres of dust and gas.
Astronomers are using the James Webb telescope to look into the center of 19 spiral galaxies. The telescope has sent back detailed images of five of them.
“We keep seeing all these amazing stars and stuff in space and every time we see a new photo I think, it can’t get better than this. And I’m wrong every time,” senior, Zachary Martin said.