Orbiting 100 million miles away from the Sun, the largest telescope in space is ready to be shipped around the world, with its own postal stamp from the United States Postal Service (USPS). The stamp celebrates the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) James Webb Space Telescope, and the full-color pictures it has captured.
The stamp, which opened for sale on September 8, 2022, is a forever stamp, a stamp that can be used no matter the purchase date or price. On the same day, the stamp was dedicated in the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. According to NASA, the stamp had an illustration of the Webb telescope. As well as an appealing, starry background. The associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Thomas Zurbuchen, stated, “I am excited to add this beautiful stamp to our collection, as we watch from the ground as humanity’s newest and most capable telescope unlocks the greatest secrets of our cosmos that have been waiting to be revealed since the beginning of time.” He additionally says “The Webb Telescope represents a new start to a new era of what we can accomplish for the benefit of all.”
The James Webb Space Telescope had NASA partner with the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) to launch this mission from Earth’s Spaceport in French Guinea to where it would unfold 1.5 million kilometers from Earth. After unfolding, the telescope goes into deep space collecting information on planets that could potentially support life, and see other evidence of the start of time, which includes the Big Bang. It will capture those images by using its four instruments, including Near-Infrared Camera (NIRcam) and Near-Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec). The James Webb Telescope will also dive deeper into the Canis Major Dwarf, which is the closest galaxy to the Milky Way galaxy.
The photos and planets the Webb Telescope has discovered are just the tip of the iceberg for the discoveries it can uncover. So, as time goes on, there will be more discoveries that will be worthy of a postal-stamp or even more.