Government Matters: Gregory Robinson

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The James Webb Space Telescope weighs as much as a school bus, and its sun shield is the size of a tennis court. It’s now a million miles from Earth and will be able to look back 13.5 billion years, close to when the first galaxies were being formed.

  • Gregory Robinson, program director for the James Webb Space Telescope at NASA and finalist for a Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal, said the team is a few weeks away from completing commissioning and will then go into science operations mode. People from around the world will conduct hundreds of scientific activities with the telescope.
  • The telescope is a follow-on to the Hubble Space Telescope, said Robinson, and is 100 times more powerful. It will allow people to see deeper and further back into the universe with more clarity.
  • Robinson said that when he took over the program in 2018, he worked through recommendations from an independent review board, increased transparency throughout the system and tried to mitigate human errors, which helped the program succeed.