Astro Bob's Backyard Astronomy: A new eye in the sky hopes to see further back into the early universe.
Launched at 6:20 am CST on Christmas morning, NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope will travel over the next few months to set up position roughly 1 million miles beyond the Earth’s orbit (about .01 au) in a “a convenient parking place” called the L2 Lagrange point. Bob King shares his excitement about the possibility of what it can reveal; using an array of infrared detectors, Webb will allow us to see galaxies from the early universe, further into the distant past than ever before.
Elsewhere in our solar system:
- Venus will make its final appearance in the night sky on New Year’s Eve and will reappear in the morning sky later in January after it passes across the Sun.
- In the early morning on Monday, January 3, look above the handle of the Big Dipper to see The Quandratids, an annual January meteor shower, that should produce about 25 meteors per hour in our region.