NASA delays tightening James Webb Space Telescope sunshield to study power system

NASA personnel are spending the day studying the power subsystem of the massive James Webb Space Telescope to ensure the observatory is ready to execute a key procedure: tensioning its vast sunshield.

The Webb space telescope, which launched on Dec. 25, is conducting a month-long deployment procedure necessary to prepare the telescope to gather data. But most steps in that procedure are controlled from the ground: While NASA has a tentative schedule for the work, mission leaders can decide to adjust the timeline along the way. So after taking Saturday (Jan. 1) as a rest day, the Webb team is spending Sunday (Jan. 2) studying the observatory’s power subsystem, NASA announced.