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Open Standards Planned For Next NASA Telescope

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the no-meters-feet-mixup-this-time dept.

Space 63

BobB writes "A NASA infrared space telescope called the 'James Web Space Telescope' is scheduled to be launched in 2013. The plan is that it will be built using open standards-based software designed to prevent problems caused when software programs developed by various agencies are incompatible with each other, as has been the case with the Hubble telescope. From the article: 'Though open standards has become common in the business sector, Matthews says this is the first time NASA has used the IBM Rational system. "This is a fairly major shift in approach for NASA," he says. "They traditionally have been very conservative in their adoption of new technologies and new tools, but I think they've found that conservative approach just doesn't hold up when you start to reach a [certain] size and complexity."'"

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frist poist!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17697810)

yay!!! yay!

typo: James WEBB Space Telescope (4, Informative)

davidwr (791652) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697832)

I was all set to make a "Universe-Wide-Web" joke then I checked the spelling.

Fixing this typo is a job for your friendly neighborhood slashdot-editor-man.

Better than Windows (3, Funny)

RandomPsychology (932636) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697846)

...because initially, MS went for the bid (attempting to dominate the space business), but NASA has (apparently) gotten wiser and moved away from satellites that BSOD at random.

Re:Better than Windows (0, Offtopic)

Sudheer_BV (1049540) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697872)

Scientists are wiser than the wicked.

Re:Better than Windows (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17697896)

In space, no one can hear you blue screen.

Re:Better than Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17704062)

Yeah, after all in space blue screens hear you!

Re:Better than Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17706074)

In Soviet space perhaps...

Re:Better than Windows (3, Funny)

Teresita (982888) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698112)

"NASA has (apparently) gotten wiser and moved away from satellites that BSOD at random."

Buggy Spontaneous Orbital Decay?

Re:Better than Windows (1)

kwrxxx (1038350) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698598)

*-*-*-

Error 2338743437:jhhjkfds
Please launch the Space Shuttle
then have the astronauts hold the
Micro$oft key down for four seconds
to reboot.

*-*-*-

yes.. (3, Insightful)

macadamia_harold (947445) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697898)

This is a fairly major shift in approach for NASA," he says. "They traditionally have been very conservative in their adoption of new technologies and new tools, but I think they've found that conservative approach just doesn't hold up when you start to reach a [certain] size and complexity.

Yes, complexity, like converting english measurements to metric.

and Quantity (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17698144)

Astronomers possibly would love a cluster of space telescopes. Amongst other heavenly bodies the discovery of new planets might well skyrocket as difference in images is analyzed constantly and continuously. Imagine on earth a spherical planetarium with the collective view of all those telescopes displayed with all items not in previous database marked in some fashion for study and possible naming other then the automatic naming necessary by the computer system to add the new sighting to the database. This cluster could be keyed on some predetermined criteria to shift focus to certain events detected.

Plenty of ideas to be filled in there, maybe some to be thrown out as this AC is not a scientist nor really understands beowulf clusters sufficiently. The Joe Taxpayer in me is sitting on my shoulder telling me to shut up, anyway I probably should have just said:

"Imagine a Beowulf cluster of Telescopes"

Re:yes.. (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17698206)

but I think they've found that conservative approach just doesn't hold up when you start to reach a [certain] size and complexity.

Yeah, NASA has no experience working with complexity. The Apollo spacecraft and the Space Shuttle are just so primitive compared to a new Ford truck with Microsoft auto software.

Or it might just be that NASA realizes that a slow evolutionary change of their systems is better than a revolutionary change that is 50% more efficient but blows a rocket up.

This change to open standards follows that. NASA first found something that worked and now they are slowly adjusting it. 'Conservative' may be a bad word in politics (for some), but it is a very good word in engineering. To most engineers I know, being called a non-conservative engineer is the same thing as being called an idiot.

I agree (4, Interesting)

wasted (94866) | more than 7 years ago | (#17699190)

but I think they've found that conservative approach just doesn't hold up when you start to reach a [certain] size and complexity.


Yeah, NASA has no experience working with complexity. The Apollo spacecraft and the Space Shuttle are just so primitive compared to a new Ford truck with Microsoft auto software.

Or it might just be that NASA realizes that a slow evolutionary change of their systems is better than a revolutionary change that is 50% more efficient but blows a rocket up.

Knowing one or two folks who work for NASA, and having met more than that, I think that they would move toward open source so it can be peer reviewed, which would result in the evolutionary change. Of the people I have met, the average IT staffer troubleshooting Word installations is way more conceited than any of the shuttle astronauts I have met. (About five that I know of, and probably at least a couple more, not that it matters.) NASA folks work to accomplish a mission, and their egos are pretty much non-existant except in the context that they have been part of the team that accomplished a specific mission. If John Doe off of the street offers an optimal solution, they will grab it, test the heck out of it, and use it if it works. Then, after the successful mission, they can say, "I was a part of that" when it comes up at cocktail parties.

Then again, I may have only met the best of NASA, and others who work there may have a better grasp on their corporate culture.

Re:yes.. (1)

pnewhook (788591) | more than 7 years ago | (#17707046)

Sarcasm on: Yeah, NASA has no experience working with complexity. The Apollo spacecraft and the Space Shuttle are just so primitive compared to a new Ford truck with Microsoft auto software.

Let's compare..

The Apollo on board computer had a grand total of 4k of memory. That included the guidance system to land on the moon. I doubt Microsoft could write 'hello world' in 4k.

The space shuttle has 10 milliion lines on code in the onboard computers, and has enough smarts to land from orbit completely automated.

Ford and Microsoft's software, called 'Sync' allows drivers to make hands-free phone calls, listen to music on digital media players and have cell phone text messages read aloud. Hardly in the same class of complexity.

Re:yes.. (5, Insightful)

jd (1658) | more than 7 years ago | (#17699394)

Major shift? Conservative? This is the same NASA that broadcast NASA Select over CU-SeeMe and also the Multibone, allowed Donald Becker to develop network drivers for Linux, opened the source of a great many Computational Fluid Dynamics packages, promoted the early development of Beowulf Clusters, published guidelines on how to identify barbarian invaders, has hosted talks by SETI folks, investigated AJAX-style applications in the mid 1990s and was routinely helping the Open Source community years before any business would go near it?

Now, I think they make some extremely stupid decisions at times. I think that half their management is an extreme liability to their operations, the safety of their astronauts and the quality of their science. I also think they are desperately underfunded and have developed something of a siege mentality. However, "conservative" is not a term I'd associate with them, and they are most certainly familiar with "Open Standards" - having either invented them or were early adopters.

This is merely where they should have been all along, based on their own practices and their own connections with the IT industry. Far from calling it revolutionary, I'd consider it merely evolutionary.

Barbarian Invaders? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 7 years ago | (#17699908)

...published guidelines on how to identify barbarian invaders

What in the name of the nine+ worlds of Sol are you talking about?

Re:Barbarian Invaders? (2, Funny)

jd (1658) | more than 7 years ago | (#17700244)

This gem [paulgazis.com] first appeared on NASA AMES' webserver. It got featured on Slashdot at the time. After AMES was rebuilt from the wreckage left after their webserver exploded, all copies at NASA were purged. However, the Slashdot archives include the original link and writeup, so proof does exist that this truly is a NASA document.

Re:Barbarian Invaders? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 7 years ago | (#17701988)

That's hilarious. Although... If the webserver was in building 245, there may be a DARC-820AD or an FF-1066AD floating around that could explain why the server "exploded".

free look 'ahead' kode offered by creators (-1, Troll)

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Bet (0, Flamebait)

The Dobber (576407) | more than 7 years ago | (#17697948)

Five bucks says this system never sees the light of day. Already way over budget.

"Conservative" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17698090)

...first time NASA has used the IBM Rational system... they've found that conservative approach just doesn't hold up
According to my PHB (who also reads /.), IBM is conservative. "You don't get fired choosing IBM," he always says.

True, even Hitler & friends used IBM to kill j (-1, Offtopic)

cheekyboy (598084) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698492)

Read http://www.ibmandtheholocaust.com/ [ibmandtheholocaust.com]

IBM provided to Germany basically a Google search on the population to find out who lived where and did what and who was a jew or had jewish blood.

Re:True, even Hitler & friends used IBM to kil (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17698660)

I think we should boycot IBM and the Roman Empire. I still can't get over how they fed my people to the lions.

Re:True, even Hitler & friends used IBM to kil (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17698756)

I think we should boycot IBM and the Roman Empire. I still can't get over how they fed my people to the lions.

That's what I'm saying. Do you have any idea how long they had to starve those lions before they would eat "your people"? It's just not humane.

MS; the new IBM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17699974)

Bush and the terrorists both push MS for use. Bush to keep track of the terrorists at our nazi camps, and the terrorists for planning how to do their operations. I will be in 20 years, both will wish that they had not use that capability.

Ho Hum (1)

Indigo (2453) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698108)

JWST to use Rational Rose, film at 11.

Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (4, Insightful)

amightywind (691887) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698124)

I used Rational Rose in a large avionics project. I can honestly say it is the worst piece of software I have ever encountered. This push comes from the suits at NASA glad handing their buddies at IBM. It cannot come from the programmers.

Re:Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (5, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698286)

I used Rational Rose in a large avionics project. I can honestly say it is the worst piece of software I have ever encountered.

I'll second that. Worked next to a project that was built in four months by two primary programmers, a DBA and two analysts. The customer brought EDS in to take over long term maintenance and they wanted to move everything over to Rational for managing change requests. Today there are 30 people on the project and what used to take hours now takes months. Where they used to spend 10's of thousands they now spend 100's of thousands.

They brought in EDS because they didn't think they were getting good value from the team that built the original application.

Rule 1: Forget Rational

Rule 2: Never give a working application to EDS.

Re:Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (3, Insightful)

Utopia (149375) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698362)

I agree.

Having worked with Rational Rose I can that if NASA is using Rational then the "major shift" is in the wrong direction.
I had to use Rational because of a push from management for a company-wide use of Rational.
A really bad decision in opinion. Too many bugs and clunky workflow makes the software utter crap.

Re:Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (1)

Curlsman (1041022) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698458)

Looks like automated CYA. After woking at NASA mid '80s, being good at CYA is how people get promoted into management,
who stay there unchangeable until they die. Good engineers get screwed or transfered to no-where projects that get canceled.

I'm not good at CYA...but I guess that's a personal problem.

Re:Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (2, Informative)

feronti (413011) | more than 7 years ago | (#17700016)

I definitely have to agree about Rose. I can't speak to XDE (or whatever they call it now), but RealTime sucks goat balls, at least if you're developing in C++. First, if you want to use the STL, you have to add it to the model yourself (granted, that's a problem with pretty much every model-driven development tool... you'd think it'd occur to someone that they should include models for standard libraries). Unfortunately, their code analysis tool sucks, so if you try to use that to reverse engineer the libraries you're using, it'll take more time than just adding the classes by hand.

Second, it doesn't properly understand templates... if you want to declare a template function, you need to define an empty macro to use as the return for the function, and then put the entire template declaration into the name field, otherwise it won't generate the correct code. If you want to create a class that inherits from an instantiation of a template, you have to first create an instantiated class (essentially a typedef naming the parameters to the template), unless the new class itself is a template, in which case you can do the inheritance directly. It's also terrible for doing round-trip engineering, since it only allows you to make changes in specific marked places in the code, so if you discover you need a new attribute or whatever, you can't just add it and have it show up in the model on the next round trip... you have to round trip it, and then add it in the model and regenerate the code.

All that said, it does have some nice things, too... the RealTime Services Library is (mostly) well designed, though some of the design decisions they made seem rather arbitrary (e.g.: you can dynamically resize the replication of a port, but you can't dynamically resize the replication of a capsule role).

Re:Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (1)

Bastard of Subhumani (827601) | more than 7 years ago | (#17702412)

Why is it that software developed for people who develop software is often total crap? You'd think that if there could be only one type of software that was reliable, reasonably featured and easy to use, developmers' tools would be it. Maybe that old proverb that the barefoot child is the cobbler's son has some basis in fact...

Re:Reamed with the Rational Rose-bush (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17706980)

The only software development tool I've ever wanted outside of visual studio was rational purify :)

Ironic (2, Insightful)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698240)

"They traditionally have been very conservative in their adoption of new technologies and new tools"

That's an exceptionally ironic statement to make about an organization responsible for space exploration.

Re:Ironic (2, Insightful)

Indigo (2453) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698478)

It does sound pretty funny, but in the specific context of flight software, it's true. When sending something complicated and expensive into space, you don't want it running bleeding edge code. You want to stick to the tried and true, even boring, stuff. Granted, there are missions that push the software envelope, but for those missions it's done deliberately and treated as a risk, not just because someone doesn't want to seem old fashioned.

Re:Ironic (1)

chgros (690878) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698572)

but in the specific context of flight software, it's true
Actually, it's also true for hardware, I heard NASA was starting to have trouble finding the obsolete parts they need for maintenance.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/ch ronicle/archive/2002/05/12/MN141658.DTL&type=tech [sfgate.com]

Re:Ironic (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698604)

"They traditionally have been very conservative in their adoption of new technologies and new tools"

That's an exceptionally ironic statement to make about an organization responsible for space exploration.

It's only ironic if your only contact with space science and technology is via NASA PR. In reality, NASA *is* highly conservative - 'new' technologies only fly after extensive qualification and testing. (By which point they aren't really 'new'.) NASA qualifies new materials for use in space flight extremely rarely. They do a great deal of research - but much less of it flies than their marketing dept would have you believe.
 
Nor is this really a new thing. The managers of the Apollo program only considered two technologies 'risky and untried' - 1) pressurization of the fuel and oxidizer tanks on the CSM and the LM directly, rather than using bladders as had previously been the gold standard, and 2) the heatshield on the CM.

Re:Ironic (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 7 years ago | (#17710470)

That's an exceptionally ironic statement to make about an organization responsible for space exploration.
no its not really, space exploration is HARD, fixing things in space is EVEN HARDER, a small fault can DOOM A MISSION and if the mission is manned KILL THE CREW (especially if it takes place during the crucial liftoff and landing phases).

so once you have a system that works you don't take making major changes to it lightly, any benifits of a new system have to be balanced carefully against the risk it poses.

IBM abusing the language? (1)

luge (4808) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698268)

Rational Rose is open standards software... how? Because it outputs UML? Seriously? Someone please tell me I'm missing something here.

Oblig. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17698270)

But does it run..... Linux?

sharing (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698466)

NASA seems to be pretty good about sharing space telescope images with the public, so don't view this as a complaint, but could open source become open access? Looking at a live feed on your computer?

Re:sharing (2, Informative)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 7 years ago | (#17703526)

Because "live feeds" from the Hubble would look like digital noise. It's NOT a web cam. The ground controllers send up very specific commands for the satellite to do very specific things. It acquires the data and transmits it back, then the data has to be analyzed carefully. Much of it isn't even imagery - just numbers. I have no idea exactly what format the data comes down in, but it's not going to be a .jpg.

NASA doing unworkable things again. (1)

lancejjj (924211) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698574)

The plan is that [the satellite] will be built using open standards-based software designed to prevent problems caused when software programs developed by various agencies are incompatible with each other
Whoa! That means that they'll no longer be able to leverage the power of Microsoft Access on board the satellite. I don't know if they thought this one through... I know, I'll call my congressman and let him know that a law should be passed requiring MS-Access on all NASA devices. That'll save tons of taxpayer money. You should call your congressman on this one too.

Interesting spin job (4, Informative)

wrmrxxx (696969) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698624)

The decision to buy IBM's product is being spinned by this article as if it's some kind of win for open standards, but there isn't anything significantly open going on here. As far as I can tell, they've adopted Rational Rose for diagramming/design and Clearcase for version control. Both of these products are closed source applications, and both store their data in closed, priority formats. There's nothing open about either of them. The best you could say is that NASA is using an open modelling language (UML), but of course that exists entirely independantly of the IBM product - I can use UML with a pencil and the back of an envelope.

If NASA really wanted to do something for openness (and delivering American taxpayers value for money), they'd be using Subversion, not ClearCase.

Both Rational and ClearCase are examples of the worst in their category of software. I've used many types of version control software, but ClearCase was the worst of all by far. This software was not purchased because NASA was particularly interested in open standards. Rational and ClearCase usually only get purchased because some manager had a very successful golf game with an IBM rep or still reasons that "nobody ever got fired for purchasing IBM".

Re:Interesting spin job (1)

wrmrxxx (696969) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698954)

and both store their data in closed, priority formats

Oops. Obviously I meant to say "proprietary", not "priority". Now we see just how much brain damage I have suffered from using ClearCase for a while.

Re:Interesting spin job (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17699664)

I disagree with you. ClearCase is not the worst in its category. This is not true.
Hell, it's so bad it warrants a category on its own.

Re:Interesting spin job (1)

feronti (413011) | more than 7 years ago | (#17700036)

Someone who thinks Clearcase is the worst example of configuration management software has obviously never used CMSynergy. Maybe it's just the way our CM group have things set up, but I find it gets in the way more than any other CM system I've used.

Re:Interesting spin job (1)

iso-cop (555637) | more than 7 years ago | (#17709872)

The article is very much mislabeled. What has been done is that everyone on JWST is being made to use Rational Rose, so that there is one set of development tools that work together. Hubble instruments are only made to conform to an interface protocol for communication, so there are a bunch of different compilers and various other tools needed to handle updates. The "open" part is that all of the developers can see one another's models, which happen to be in UML.

They need a good IPC toolkit (1)

Catamaran (106796) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698698)

I recommend Ice [zeroc.com] .

Bad idea... (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698752)

The last time NASA use two different measurement systems on the same project, the probe bounced off the Martian atmosphere.

Re:Bad idea... (1)

Oktober Sunset (838224) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698806)

I think it was supposed to bounce, but it ended up more of a splat.

Open Standards Planned For Next NASA Telescope (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 7 years ago | (#17698850)

All parts will be metric so the entire world can understand them!

bi2nkatch (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17699096)

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Matthews is wrong (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17699186)

I worked on multiple NASA projects in the 1990s. During the mid-90s we used Rational http://www-306.ibm.com/software/rational/ [ibm.com] for a short period of time (6 months) then dropped it. IME, the people who want these tools are architect that couldn't program their way out of a paper bag. Since Ive become an architect now, I prefer Visio http://www.microsoft.com/office/visio/ [microsoft.com] to most of these other tools - that's only if a pencil drawing doesn't cover everything good enough AND I need to make a presentation to someone with money.

IBM has many nice tools and the best bang for your buck hardware, but Rational ought to be buried into a deep, dark hole with a RADIOACTIVE sign outside. http://www.nmsu.edu/~safety/images/signs/sign_caut ion-rad-mat.jpg [nmsu.edu]

W00T fp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17699724)

IT A BREAK, IF Of all legitimate Or mislead tHe are there? Oh,

I'll believe it'll work... (2, Interesting)

solitas (916005) | more than 7 years ago | (#17699930)

...after I SEE it work. After all, the HST needed unanticipated 'eyeglasses' before IT was fully operational (and even then they still had to do lots of software correction afterward).

FIO: what software runs the HST? Custom, I would imagine.

Re:I'll believe it'll work... (1)

smoker2 (750216) | more than 7 years ago | (#17703828)

After all, the HST needed unanticipated 'eyeglasses' before IT was fully operational (and even then they still had to do lots of software correction afterward).
WTF has Hubble got to do with it ? The problem with Hubble was physical, the mirror was distorted. Why was it distorted ? Well it was sat waiting to get launched for so long because of delays with the shuttle (due to a fairly high profile accident), and gravity did its worst. Open or closed software development would have had identical problems. Of course they might have checked it out before they launched it, but it still has nothing to do with software.

Re:I'll believe it'll work... (1)

solitas (916005) | more than 7 years ago | (#17718914)

What it has to do with the HST is that it wasn't done right the first time (software and hardware), and stands a great chance of not being done right the second time. This _is_ NASA...

As for the mirror: where the fçk have you been? Gravity twisted the mirror because the project was shelved for so long after the Challenger O-ring 'difficulty'? Seriously, you haven't been "following the news"?

I'll save you time - here, go directly to, and read, the four sections starting with this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hubble_Space_Telescop e#Flawed_mirror [wikipedia.org]

This is not new (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17700292)

The "Open" standards that are implied in this message are those developed by the CCSDS and OMG.

Go to the website http://www.ccsds.org/ [ccsds.org] ... there are some very interesting standards especially one called XTCE, which is the used for describing spacecraft data systems.

The greatest software ever written (1)

XB-70 (812342) | more than 7 years ago | (#17705692)

For all the NASA nay-sayers and doubters, have a look at this quote from http://www.informationweek.com/showArticle.jhtml;j sessionid=AP2H4SQPCLVBIQSNDLOSKHSCJUNN2JVN?article ID=191901844 [informationweek.com] :

"I've always been amazed at the Apollo spacecraft guidance system, built by the MIT Instrumentation Lab. In 1969, this software got Apollo 11 to the moon, detached the lunar module, landed it on the moon's surface, and brought three astronauts home. It had to function on the tiny amount of memory available in the onboard Raytheon computer--it carried 8 Kbytes, not enough for a printer driver these days. And there wouldn't be time to reboot in case of system failure when the craft made re-entry. It's just as well Windows wasn't available for the job." [Thank God!! - Ed.]

If NASA open-sources software of this calibre, the entire world will benefit. Look at what NASA's innovations have done for miniaturising circuitry, freeze-drying foods, high-speed airfoils and robotics (to name a few). Now, go download NASA mars rover imaging software (MAESTRO) at http://mars.telascience.org/softwaredownload [telascience.org] and look around Mars yourself. With software of this quality open-sourced, just think of the value to the world.

NASA the new Blu-Ray (1)

heroine (1220) | more than 7 years ago | (#17706304)

They'll find out as we have in consumer electronics, it's a lot of different companies with incompatible needs stepping on each other that makes stuff not work. The standards process just encapsulates the incompatible needs in a wrapper and creates new jobs for standards VP's.

You end up with most of the budget spent on reimplementing thousands of requirements because each member mandated each requirement for your inclusion in the consortium, not because you needed every thousandth component.

James E. Webb 1906-1992 & the JWST (1)

maggard (5579) | more than 7 years ago | (#17706950)

For those unaware (and /. editors too lazy to correct a memorial's name) James Webb was the head of NASA under whom the lunar missions were such a success. He was widely considered to be an excellent leader, both within NASA and in championing NASA in Washington DC. He was with NASA from 1961 to 1968 and died in 1992. In 2002 the planned "Next Generation Space Telescope" was renamed in his honor.

For more information on the man & the telescope see:

Wikipedia entry on James E. Webb at NASA [wikipedia.org]

Wikipedia Entry on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) [wikipedia.org]

NASA page on James E. Webb [nasa.gov]

NASA website on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) [nasa.gov]

Re:James E. Webb 1906-1992 & the JWST (1)

silentounce (1004459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17710612)

Those are good links. I was about to post similar and mention that the "satellite" will be the second man-made object put into "orbit" at lagrange point 2 [wikipedia.org] (the WMAP was the first [wikipedia.org] ). This is interesting because it will revolve around the Sun instead of the Earth. If it was round and nothing else was in its orbit it could be considered the first man-made planet. ;-)
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