Space Agency NASA has received the first picture made by a new space telescope called TESS (Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite), launched last month. The device is designed to search for new exoplanets. Photograph NASA employees received 17 may and published in the open access later in the day, were made on April 26, when the telescope was about 8000 miles from the surface of the moon.
Natural satellite of our planet telescope used to convert a gravitational maneuver, thanks to which the unit went on planned and rather elongated orbit around the Earth. According to experts from NASA, to date, in this orbit have not worked none of the launched spacecraft.
“This is a very elliptical orbit with a maximum angle of view for a very large part of the sky,” said NASA in its official statement.
Last run of the motors of the telescope for anchoring the orbit is planned on may 30. After checking all systems and camera calibration, the unit will begin its biennial planned space mission.
With the help of one of the cameras TESS has already received the first image. Telescope has made the Central part of the Centaurus constellation in the southern hemisphere of the sky, and he showed it on more than 200,000 stars.
“In the upper right corner of the image of the observed region of the nebula the Coal sack. To the right and below it, you can see a very bright star Beta Centauri (Hadar). With its four cameras, the telescope, TESS will be able to cover an area more than 400 times greater than that which we see in this picture” — the experts of NASA.
Scientists add that the first image of the academic level expected in June.
TESS is designed to search for new exoplanets by the transit method. The device will monitor the brightness of stars, hoping to detect changes in this indicator. The same discovery of new worlds uses a space telescope “Kepler” — on the transit method accounts for more than 70% of the 3700 they found and confirmed exoplanets.
The new telescope is intended to replace and even surpass the “Kepler” on the part of the total number of detected ekzoplanet. The main objectives of TESS will be the star, located in relative proximity to our system. Recall that the “Kepler” discovered a planet not only in the immediate environment, but also very distant from our systems. In addition, through the use of more modern scientific tools, TESS will be able to conduct deeper research discovered worlds.
In the future, the possibility and efficiency of such studies will be considerably expanded. For example, thanks to the space telescope “James Webb” (JWST), the launch of which (at the moment) is scheduled for 2020. Scientists believe that “Webb” will be able to analyze at least several dozen open in the future TESS exoplanets in the presence of water, oxygen, methane, and other gases in their atmospheres.
The cost of the mission telescope TESS is estimated at $ 200 million. The launch using SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket cost the space Agency NASA in an additional $ 87 million.