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The European Space Agency (ESA) announced late yesterday that, due to “adverse weather conditions” in French Guiana, it has delayed the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope on an Ariane 5 rocket one day to December 25th.
The announcement also stated that the final launch readiness review also approved the launch, though no update has yet been issued on the ground control communications problem that had caused a two day delay last week.
Meanwhile, this story and its headline encapsulates the terror I think many astronomers presently feel about this telescope:
The sense is one of helpless panic among astronomers who want to use Webb. They know it will do really cutting edge science, but they also know that many things can go wrong, and the history of the telescope (ten years late and 20x overbudget) will likely make replacing it impossible.
And many things can go wrong. Below is NASA’s video showing the telescope’s complex unfolding, step-by-step, after launch.
Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!
From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.
“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.
All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.
Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.