“No distance of place or lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other’s worth.” -Robert Southey
You might think that, when it comes to finding the most distant objects in the Universe, all we need is a good telescope, to leave the shutter open, and wait. As we accumulate more and more photons, we're bound to find the most distant, faint objects out there.
It's a nice thought, but it misses an important fact: the Universe is expanding! And with that expansion, the wavelength of the light we can see gets redshifted. Ultraviolet light winds up in the infrared, infrared light winds up in the microwave, and the most distant galaxies that are out there are invisible, even to Hubble.
I wonder, could another be built to use as an interferometer - say, with a baseline of several hundred Km.? Easier to achieve in space than the limitations of land based systems.
While this may be heresy, I find those ancient, super-red-shifted galaxies to be boring. They are just a faint fuzzy blob of pixels that look nearly identical to the faint fuzzy blob of pixels taken by the last generation of telescopes. I am not saying it isn't a great technical achievement to find a new record holder, but still it is boring.
One of the things about JWST that I find most intriguing isn't even part of the telescope. It is sometimes funded / sometimes cut remote operated star shade occulter that will help JWST directly image exoplanets.
Images of exoplanets are typically only a single pixel, but there is something about that single pixel that grabs my interest in a way that no record holding proto-galaxy ever could.
"While this may be heresy"
You're confusing science with religion,
We have "different" "opposing" "uncommon" or "contentious". There's no dogma to be heretical over in science.
If there are massive black holes in the centers of these early galaxies, wouldn't there also be continuum radiation emitted by infalling matter? Thanks.
Is it possible to calculate 'where' the big-bang occurred? I can imaging pinpointing the position will be nearly impossible in the near term, but having even a general sense of direction would be very cool.
You can point in any direction and that is where the big bang occurred about 13.8 billion years ago. A good place to start is this piece here:
That question is very similar to the one I think you are asking.
"Is it possible to calculate ‘where’ the big-bang occurred?"
Either yes or no, depending on what you want answered.
It started here. And at Proxima Centuri. And in Andromeda. And in the Bullet Cluster.
They were all there at the same place when the big bang happened, therefore it happened in all those places.
If you want the center of the universe, then no, because there isn't one.
I find it amusing to read that there is no center of the universe. Of course there is a center. It's my wife. Well anyway, she thinks she is..
I wonder, could another be built to use as an interferometer – say, with a baseline of several hundred Km.? Easier to achieve in space than the limitations of land based systems.
Its been proposed (and named: LISA). But not funded.
@PJ #1 and eric #9
The proposed LISA project was an Interferometer but it wasn't supposed to do the type of observations the JWST was built for. I think a better example of a proposed Interferometer telescope of the type that could have used a JWST-type telescope as an end point is the very cool but also cancelled Terrestrial Planet Finder.
It makes Wow feel like a man to talk down to people in science articles. I bet he is a real catch with the ladies
I was thinking more along the lines of visual observation including IR, rather than hunting for gravity waves.