PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — NASA has unveiled a new batch of images from its powerful new space telescope. They are giving us a view of the cosmos we have never seen until now.
It’s an exciting new view of outer space that scientists have never seen before.READ MORE: Mother Of 6 Stabbed To Death In West Philly Had Protective Order Against Fiance Charged In Her Murder
CBS3 talked to the Franklin Institute’s chief astronomer, who sheds light on what this new view will mean for the future.
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is returning its first color images from the outer reaches of the universe. It’s our deepest dive into the orbit more than 13 billion light-years away.
“Lots of good stuff. I just don’t know where to start. I’m a kid in a candy shop, this is really good,” NASA infrared scientist Michael Ressler said.
The photos include Stephan’s Quintet — part of the constellation Pegasus, revealing five galaxies in a cosmic dance 290 million light-years away.
Another photo reveals a gas planet about the size of Saturn, and the first-ever spectrum of an exoplanet, showing the distinct signature of water.READ MORE: Philabundance Distributing More Food Than Ever Amid Skyrocketing Prices Caused By Inflation
“This is a view we’ve never ever had before. Previous observatories have hinted at these things but we’ve never seen it in the kind of detail that Webb showed us today,” Ressler said.
The powerful telescope will help scientists unravel some of space’s biggest mysteries and it’s an exciting time for Derrick Pitts, chief astronomer at the Franklin Institute.
“We’ll also be able to understand more about what we can find in the universe. How many more galaxies are there than we ever expected before? We’ll find out about other solar systems and what their planets are like. We may even understand a little bit more about the fate of the universe and the possibility that there could be environments where we might find other inhabitants in the universe,” Pitts said.
President Joe Biden unveiled the first image Monday, a jumble of distant galaxies deeper into the cosmos than humanity has ever seen. The clarity of the images is stunning and has even surprised astronomers like Pitts.
The first image from the Webb Space Telescope represents a historic moment for science and technology. For astronomy and space exploration.
And for America and all humanity. pic.twitter.com/cI2UUQcQXj
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 11, 2022
“The resolution and the clarity of the images. I think one of the things that gets lost when we talk about this is these images that we’re seeing we’re only looking at an extraordinarily small, tiny, tiny section of the sky. And then what we’ve done is we’ve collected the light from that, the radiation, and we’re now expanding that, zooming in and blowing up that image to see what’s there,” Pitts said.MORE NEWS: Darren Arnold Sought For Allegedly Setting Fire To West Philly Home Where 150 Jugs Of Gasoline Were Found
Orbiting nearly 1 million miles from earth, the $10 billion Webb Observatory is the world’s largest and most complex space science telescope.