NASA plans to have the James Webb telescope in space in 2014 to replace Hubble subject to unforeseen developmental problems and budget constraints. Webb is expected to take us back in time to 250 million years after the Big Bang. (Hubble has taken us back no further than to 800 million.) Where Hubble is 350 miles above earth Webb is anticipated to be a million. Among other things it is expected to reveal more about the nature of the first galaxies and the chemical makeup of early stars. There have been significant developmental and budgeting problems in association with the project and it is under close financial scrutiny but it is nonetheless on track for a 2014 launch.

"This is all about 'where did we come from? What is our place in the universe?' " Gardner said. "Sometimes science and religion are addressing the same question in different ways." 

November 11, 2010 Update: Major Cost Overruns Delay Launching Date to 2015 at Earliest: 

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Replies to This Discussion

I'm so excited about this telescope. Hubble's given us so much, and JW will be even better; like going from Atari to Playstation 3. Or something :)
I am too. I am wondering if we will learn anything more about the Big Bang itself.
The Hubble telescope has been a terrific success----and so popular with the public too.
Thanks John for reminding us about the progress being made on its replacement.



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