0_explorationEspace
Home / Braincamps / Space / How Space telescopes unravel the mysteries of the cosmos
π Space

How Space telescopes unravel the mysteries of the cosmos

3 episodes
  • 1
    James Webb Space Telescope: the new “Hubble”?
  • 2
    In the space between galaxies: dark matter and interstellar dust
  • 3
    How do solar winds impact Earth?
Épisode 1/3
Isabelle Dumé, Science journalist
On November 17th, 2021
3 mins reading time
Philippe Laudet
Philippe Laudet
Astronomy and Astrophysics Program Manager at CNES

Key takeaways

  • A new space telescope, named James Webb (JWST), will be launched later this year onboard an Ariane 5 rocket – described as being the successor of the renowned Hubble Space Telescope.
  • With a 6.5-metre-diameter segmented mirror, three times the size of Hubble’s and is 400 times more sensitive than current ground-based or space-based infrared telescopes.
  • It will observe infrared waves helping researchers trace them back to the birth of stars and as far back as 200 million after the Big Bang.
  • Data collected by the JWST will also give us more information about the atmosphere of ~10 exoplanets discovered over past decade.
Épisode 2/3
Isabelle Dumé, Science journalist
On November 17th, 2021
3 mins reading time
David Elbaz
David Elbaz
Astrophysicist and Scientific Director of the CEA Astrophysics Department

Key takeaways

  • Space telescopes give us the opportunity to collect crucial data about the Universe, which are unobtainable and invisible from Earth.
  • Those observations provide us with more knowledge on the composition of space; for example, we now know that galaxies float in ‘plasma’, and that they can lose some of their own matter through galactic winds.
  • New ways of observing space can drive technical innovation. And some of them can be useful to everyday objects on Earth, such as our mobile phones.
Épisode 3/3
Isabelle Dumé, Science journalist
On November 17th, 2021
4 mins reading time
Lina Hadid
Lina Hadid
CNRS Research Fellow at the Plasma Physics Laboratory (LPP)

Key takeaways

  • Ejections from the surface of the sun, as well as solar winds, generate so-called ‘solar storms’ that impact the Earth’s magnetic outer layer (magnetosphere). • There are two types of solar wind events; “fast” winds that can reach 800 km/s, and “slow”, which move at speeds of 400 km/s.
  • The collision between these winds and the Earth’s atmosphere creates the polar auroras – or Northern Lights.
  • Scientists observe and analyse the properties of turbulence created in the atmospheres of planets to learn more about them.

Contributors

Isabelle Dumé

Isabelle Dumé

Science journalist

Isabelle Dumé holds a PhD in physics. She collaborates with various scientific magazines and media, public and private institutions, and actors in higher education and research in France and worldwide.