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21 Dec, 8 tweets, 4 min read
INTERACTIVE: This gold-plated, alien-hunting space telescope is about to begin a journey that could reveal some of the universe's most enduring mysteries and take us billions of years back in time.

Here's how it'll work and why it’s so significant →

The James Webb Space Telescope is being billed as the successor to the Hubble Telescope, and it comes with huge technological advances.

NASA is describing this as an "Apollo moment."

Because it takes time for light to travel through space, telescopes essentially function as time machines by capturing events that happened billions of years ago.

The Webb telescope will be able to see farther than ever — and farther back in time.

About 13 billion years.
You might be familiar with these images of cosmic gas and dust (thank you, Hubble Telescope).

They are big and awe-inspiring — and they're also blocking our view.

The Webb Telescope will use infrared technology to observe the celestial objects beyond.
And what about aliens? The Webb telescope will be keeping an eye out.

It has instruments sensitive enough to sniff out the atmospheres of exoplanets — including possibly faint biosignatures of extraterrestrial life.

How will it work?

The telescope’s huge primary mirror, which collects light from celestial objects, is key (the larger the mirror, the more detail it can pick up.)

It's honeycomb-shaped mirror measures about 270 sq. ft and is made up of 18 gold-coated segments.
The Webb observatory will be able to see a long way but it can't do its work from Earth.

It will launch on Dec. 24, beginning a million-mile journey to an orbit far enough from the sun to do its careful work.

Once it’s in place, the Webb Telescope will undergo an intricate, monthlong unfurling process that @NASA has nicknamed "29 days on the edge."

After six months, it will snap its first images.

Read more: nbcnews.to/3qmVxKa

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More from @NBCNews

13 Dec
NEW: Supervisors threatened to fire candle factory workers if they left hours before deadly tornado leveled their facility, employees say. nbcnews.to/31SRk8h
As a catastrophic tornado approached Mayfield, Kentucky, employees of a candle factory heard the warning sirens and wanted to leave the building.

But at least four workers say supervisors warned employees that they would be fired if they left their shifts early.
For hours, up to 15 workers beseeched managers to allow them to take shelter at their own homes, only to have their requests rebuffed, the workers say.

Fearing their safety, some in fact left during their shifts regardless of the repercussions.
Read 12 tweets
13 Dec

• At least 64 killed in Kentucky, ranging from 5 months old to 86 years old, Gov. Beshear says

• 105 unaccounted for in Kentucky

• 6 dead in Illinois

• 4 dead in Tennessee

• 2 dead in Missouri

• 2 dead in Arkansas

📷 Tayfun Coskun / Getty
LATEST: Rescuers continue to search for survivors after deadly tornadoes tore through Kentucky and neighboring states over the weekend, decimating entire towns.

Red Cross volunteers work to drop off, sort and gather essential supplies from donations for people whose homes were destroyed or damaged by tornadoes at South Warren High School in Bowling Green, Kentucky.


📷 Silas Walker / Lexington Herald-Leader
Read 8 tweets
7 Dec
SPECIAL REPORT: To build electric cars, manufacturers need to mine nickel.

To dig up more nickel, a mining company plans to bulldoze a section of pristine rainforest.

The “ethical dilemma” of when promising tech results in environmental harm:
A nickel mine stretching nearly 4 square miles scars a rainforest in Palawan, Philippines.

The mine, Rio Tuba, plays a vital role in satisfying the global demand for a mineral more coveted than ever due in part to the explosion of the electric car industry.
The raw nickel dug out of the ground here ends up in the lithium batteries of plug-in vehicles manufactured by Tesla, Toyota and other automakers, according to an @NBCNews review of company filings and shipping records.
Read 5 tweets
4 Dec
As oil companies carve up more of the rainforest, a new study says no place in the world uses more oil from beneath the Amazon than California.

Published in partnership with @pulitzercenter @Rainforest_RIN #NBCNewsThreads (1/8) nbcnews.to/3ptuZpS
@pulitzercenter @Rainforest_RIN Last year alone, some 70M barrels of oil from the Amazon rainforest in Ecuador flowed to the U.S. California accounted for nearly 56M barrels, far more than the 5 other states that received oil: Texas (6M), Louisiana (6M), Mississippi (0.5M), Washington (0.4M). (2/8)
@pulitzercenter @Rainforest_RIN About half of the Amazon oil exported to California went to 3 refineries in and around Los Angeles, the report said. California drivers fill up on Amazon oil at gas stations operated by major brands such as Marathon, Chevron and Shell. (3/8)
Read 8 tweets
24 Nov
BREAKING: Three men found guilty of felony murder in death of Ahmaud Arbery. nbcnews.to/3DPW64B
The jury convicted Travis McMichael of malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault, false imprisonment and criminal attempt to commit a felony.

Gregory McMichael and William Bryan were acquitted of the top charge.

All now face up to life in prison.
Read 5 tweets
19 Nov
BREAKING: Kyle Rittenhouse acquitted on all charges in shooting that killed two people and injured a third. nbcnews.to/3nxFnx9
Wisconsin jury finds Kyle Rittenhouse not guilt on all counts in the fatal shooting of two men at a 2020 protest in Kenosha. nbcnews.to/3nxFnx9
Read 6 tweets

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