NASA, in partnership with ESA (European Space Agency) and CSA (Canadian Space Agency), will release the James Webb Space Telescope’s first full-color images and spectroscopic data during a live broadcast beginning at 10:30 a.m. EDT Tuesday, July 12, from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

Released one by one, these first images from the world’s largest and most powerful space telescope will demonstrate Webb at its full power as it begins its mission to unfold the infrared universe.

This illustration depicts NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope – the largest, most powerful, and most complex space science telescope ever built – fully unfolded in space. The telescope’s first full-color images and spectroscopic data will demonstrate Webb at its full power, ready to begin its mission to unfold the infrared universe. Credit: Adriana Manrique Gutierrez / NASA

Each image will simultaneously be made available on social media, as well as on the agency’s website at:

The following is a list of activities for the release (all times Eastern):

Friday, July 8

NASA will share the list of cosmic targets for Webb’s first images and spectra on the agency’s website.

Tuesday, July 12 (Image Release Day)

9:45 a.m. – Live, opening remarks by the agency and Webb leadership will air on NASA TV, the NASA app, and the agency’s website ahead of the first images released.

10:30 a.m. – Live coverage of the image release broadcast will air on NASA TV, the NASA app, and the agency’s website. The public also can watch live on FacebookTwitterYouTubeTwitch, and Daily Motion.

12 p.m. – Following the live broadcast, NASA and its partners will hold a joint media briefing at NASA Goddard. The briefing will Livestream on NASA TV, the NASA app, and the agency’s website. Participants include:

  • Eric Smith, Webb program scientist and Astrophysics Division chief scientist, NASA Headquarters
  • Knicole Colón, Webb deputy project scientist for exoplanet science, NASA Goddard
  • René Doyon, principal investigator for the Canadian Near-Infrared Imager and Slitless Spectrograph, University of Montreal
  • Christopher Evans, Webb project scientist, ESA
  • Klaus Pontoppidan, Webb project scientist, STScI
  • Jane Rigby, Webb operations project scientist, NASA Goddard
  • Amber Straughn, Webb deputy project scientist for communications, NASA Goddard

Wednesday, July 13

1 p.m.: NASA en español social media event

NASA will broadcast a live social media event in Spanish on its NASA en español YouTubeFacebook, and Twitter accounts. Webb experts Begoña Vila and Néstor Espinoza will discuss the release of the first images and take questions from followers.

3 p.m.: NASA Science Live

Webb experts will answer questions about the first images and data in a NASA Science Live show. The broadcast, Webb’s First Full-Color Images Explained, will air live on the NASA Science Live website, as well as YouTubeFacebook, and Twitter. Viewers of this episode can submit questions on social media using the hashtag #UnfoldtheUniverse or by leaving a comment in the chat section of the Facebook or YouTube stream.

NASA Social

The agency will host an in-person NASA Social Tuesday, July 12, and Wednesday, July 13. Participants will join as guests for the in-studio filming of the televised broadcast at NASA Goddard, tour NASA Goddard and STScI facilities, and interact with experts from the Webb mission.

Social media users can also join a virtual global social event on Facebook to get a behind-the-scenes look at the mission and celebrate Webb’s first images.

Webb Community Events

The public can also join in the release of the first full-color images by attending one of the official Webb Space Telescope Community Events taking place across the country this summer. The list of events celebrating Webb’s first images is available online and updated frequently.

Webb, an international partnership with ESA and CSA, launched Dec. 25 from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. After unfolding into its final form in space and successfully reaching its destination 1 million miles from Earth, the observatory now is completing the months-long process of preparing for science operations. Webb will explore every phase of cosmic history – from within the solar system to the most distant observable galaxies in the early universe, and everything in between.

Stay connected with the mission and share your experience with Webb’s first images on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram with #UnfoldTheUniverse. Follow and tag these accounts:

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply