After two decades of development, the James Webb Space Telescope launched on December 25th, 2021. This revolutionary telescope is the first ever 6.5 meter segmented telescope in space that was the work of 1000’s of engineers, technicians and scientists. Once in space, there were over 50 successful deployments followed by the first ever alignment of a segmented telescope in space and instrument commissioning. Building this telescope required developing 10 different technologies, a new way to do integration and testing of large telescopes, and a remote commissioning which improved the initial alignment of mirrors by a factor of 1,000,000. This talk will review the history of the JWST telescope development through testing and on-orbit commissioning including the performance and then discuss how one can employ an evolutionary space telescope approach with revolutionary technologies and capabilities like big rockets, robotic servicing, and active optical technologies to enable future generations of space telescopes.
Mr. Lee Feinberg
James Webb Space Telescope
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Lee Feinberg has been the optics lead and Optical Telescope Element (OTE) Manager for the James Webb Space Telescope at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland since 2002. Earlier in his career, Lee was the Assistant Chief for Technology in the Instrument Systems and Technology Division at Goddard and prior to that Lee was part of the optical team that repaired the Hubble Space Telescope on Serving Mission 1, was STIS instrument manager on Servicing Mission-2, and he co-led the concept study for Wide Field Camera-3. Lee was a member of both the LUVOIR and HABEX Science and Technology Definition and he is a member of the Roman Space Telescope Standing Review Board. His research focuses on large and ultra-stable telescopes. Lee is a fellow of the Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE) and a NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Senior Fellow. Lee has a B.S. in Optics from University of Rochester and a M.S. in Applied Physics from Johns Hopkins University. Lee is also a passionate blues, rock and jazz keyboardist and plays in two DC bands.