Linked Questions

8
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4answers
5k views

How can electronics on board JWST survive the low operating temperature while it's difficult to survive lunar nights?

Compared to the temperatures encountered in lunar nights, the desired operating temperature of the James Webb Space Telescope is very low. Lunar nights are typically -170°C while the operating ...
3
votes
7answers
3k views

Would it have been cheaper and/or faster to put a James Webb-like Space Telescope on a balloon instead of a rocket?

I've just noticed the following items: CNET: NASA to send stadium-size balloon skyward to study the cosmos JPL/NASA News: NASA Mission Will Study the Cosmos With a Stratospheric Balloon Even in 2020 ...
18
votes
3answers
2k views

How much can the Mars rover Curiosity do autonomously, after four years of operation?

I was under the impression (when asking this question) that over the past four years that experience by ground operators and programmers had lead to a configuration where the Mars rover Curiosity ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

Could JWST stay at L2 “forever”?

Using only reaction wheels powered by solar panel and the sunshield as a sail (in continuous active attitude control) to generate thrust from solar photon pressure in the desired direction, could JWST ...
14
votes
1answer
2k views

How can the 6.5 m primary mirror of the JWST fit inside the 5.4 m fairing of Ariane 5?

All the variants of the payload fairing for Ariane 5 are 5.4 meters in diameter, the same as the core stage of the rocket. At the same time, the mirror of the James Webb Space Telescope is 6.5 meters. ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

Can/Will the James Webb Telescope maintain its position passively?

A recent article about the telescope states (emphasis mine): Unlike Hubble, which orbits the Earth at about 340 miles of altitude, Webb will be sent almost a million miles into space, at a ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the sources of light at L2? How will the James Webb telescope be powered?

The James Webb space telescope will be positioned very close to L2. According to JPL, Webb will have a large solar-array to power itself. I don't understand how this works, since L2 is positioned "...
9
votes
1answer
913 views

What happens to JWST after it runs out of propellant?

JWST will be orbiting L2 which is unstable equilibrium thus will require propellant for station keeping. JWST will carry propellant for 5-10 years. What will happen once it runs out of propellant? ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Are some Halo Orbits actually Stable?

UPDATE: I found another reference! While I always enjoy a good video starring Jimmy and Linda Carter, this one has Dennis Wingo describing ISEE-3's original Halo orbit. He describes Sun-Earth $L_1$ as ...
5
votes
1answer
269 views

What are the future prospects for spacecraft autonomy

edit: Possibly helpful information in Gizmodo and YouTube. In general spacecraft are supplied with propulsion systems often with substantial redundancy in the plumbing and engines or thrusters so ...
3
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1answer
131 views

Will WFIRST and JWST be able to resolve each other?

The James Webb Space Telescope is scheduled to launch in 2021 and be put in a halo orbit around Sun-Earth L2 soon after. The plan for the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope is a launch perhaps ...
0
votes
0answers
62 views

How will NASA's software for autonomous navigation in cis-lunar space work?

NASA news item NASA Funds CubeSat Pathfinder Mission to Unique Lunar Orbit says: The pathfinder mission represents a rapid lunar flight demonstration and could launch as early as December 2020. ...