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Space telescope's 'golden eye' opens, last major hurdle

NASA-Space Telescope
Posted at 5:44 PM, Jan 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-09 10:22:25-05

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.— NASA's new space telescope has opened its gold-plated, flower-shaped mirror, the largest and most sensitive ever launched.

The final part of the 21-foot mirror swung into place Saturday at flight controllers' command, completing the unfolding of the James Webb Space Telescope.

Webb is so big that it had to be folded orgami-style to fit in the rocket that soared from South America two weeks ago.

Its tennis court-size sunshield unfurled earlier in the week, providing subzero shade for the mirror and science instruments.

More powerful than the Hubble Space Telescope, the $10 billion Webb will scan the cosmos for infrared light from the first stars and galaxies formed 13.7 billion years ago.