The James Webb Space Telescope: A Glimpse into the Cosmos

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope captured an image of the starburst galaxy M82 in 2006, with the small box at the galaxy’s core representing the area captured by the NIRCam instrument on NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope. In the Webb image, red filaments are visible, which represent the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission tracing the shape of the galactic wind.

The Hubble image showed different wavelengths of light being represented by different colors – light at .814 microns was colored red, .658 microns was red-orange, .555 microns was green, and .435 microns was blue. Filters used for these images were F814W, F658N, F555W, and F435W, respectively. On the other hand, in the Webb image light at 3.35 microns was colored red, 2.50 microns was green and 1.64 microns was blue with filters F335M, F250M and F164N used.

These stunning images were made possible through a collaboration between NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI and A. Bolatto from the University of Maryland who provided insight into the galaxy’s structure and dynamics.

By Sophia Gonzalez

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