Time Until Launch
Launching in October 2020 the James Webb Telescope will be the premier space observatory for astronomers worldwide, extending the tantalizing discoveries of the Hubble Space Telescope.
It will be the largest telescope ever placed in space; 100 times more powerful than Hubble. So big it has to fold origami-style to fit in the rocket and will unfold like a “Transformer” in space.
Webb will be able to see right through and into massive clouds of dust that are hazy to visible-light observatories like Hubble.
But thats not everything the James Webb Telescope will tell us. Its going to unfold mysteries about the atmospheres of extrasolar planets, and perhaps even find the building blocks of life elsewhere in the universe. In addition to other planetary systems, Webb will also study objects within our own Solar System.
The new Telescioe will orbit the sun, a million miles away from Earth at the second Lagrange point. (L2 is four times further away than the moon!)
The Lagrange points are orbital points near two large co-orbiting bodies. At these points the gravitational forces of the two large bodies cancel out in such a way that a small object placed in orbit there is in equilibrium relative to the center of mass of the large bodies.