By Anthony Miller 7:04 pm PST

The James Webb Space Telescope launched on December 25, 2021, begins to reveal more clearly the structure of the universe. Not a universe full of stars but of galaxies forms the relevant part of the information provided.

This has been made clear by employing gravitational lensing, to review certain of the universe.

Comparative image of the same region of the universe, the Wolf-Lundmark-Melotte (WLM) dwarf galaxy, the Webb telescope demonstrates its remarkable ability to resolve faint stars outside the Milky Way. Here it is compared with images from the Spitzer Red-inflated Space Telescope and the Hubble Space Telescope. (Photo: NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI, and Kristen McQuinn (Rutgers University)/Flickr)


Webb captured this mosaic of a region of the sky measuring 2% of the area covered by the full moon. (Photo: NASA)


Compare Hubble’s combined visible and ultraviolet view (left) with Webb’s mid-infrared view (right) of galaxy IC 5332. Notice how the dark regions of dust between the spiral arms of this galaxy are visible in Hubble’s image but not in Webb’s, as mid-infrared light is able to pass through the dust. Different stars also shine brighter at different wavelengths — so some stars are clearer in Hubble’s view, while others are more visible with Webb. Taken together, these two views provide us a more complete understanding of galaxy IC 5332’s structure and composition. (Photo: ESA/Webb, NASA & CSA, J. Lee and the PHANGS-JWST and PHANGS-HST Team/Flickr)


An infographic titled “Galaxy Cluster SMACS 0723, Webb Spectra Identify Galaxies in the Very Early Universe; NIRCam Imaging and NIRSpec Microshutter Array Spectroscopy.” At left is a NIRCam image of the field, which is filled with galaxies of different colors, shapes, and sizes. Four galaxies from this image are highlighted, and labeled: 11.3 billion years, 12.6 billion years, 13.0 billion years, 13.1 billion years to indicate when the observed light was emitted. In inset images, these galaxies appear blurry and have red areas. To the right are four line graphs corresponding to the four highlighted galaxies. These are labeled NIRSpec Microshutter Array Spectroscopy. They show the shift in the position of hydrogen and oxygen emission lines to longer wavelengths as age of the light increases. (Photo: NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI/Flickr)

In a recent research published by The Astronomical Journal, the north ecliptic pole was analyzed (within the project: Prime Extragalactic Areas for Reionization and Lensing Science (PEARLS), together with gravitational lensing (A gravitational lens is a distribution of matter -such as a cluster of galaxies- between a distant light source and an observer that is able to bend the light from the source as the light travels towards the observer, Source: wikipedia). Very distant galaxies were observed. A billion times more than can be seen with the naked eye, the light from these galaxies have traveled 13.5 billion years.

PEARLS NIRCam image of the El Gordo module 3′ away from the cluster. image orientation is shown by the labeled arrows. (Photo: Proyect PEARLS/Astronomical Journal)