A Lockheed Martin optical instrument for the James Webb Space Telescope has completed tests at NASA‘s Goddard Space Flight Center.
The company said Friday it built the Near Infrared Camera for the space agency and the University of Arizona.
The instrument serves as the Webb telescope’s primary science instrument and mirror-alignment sensor, Lockheed added.
“[The] alignment of the primary mirror segments depends on NIRCam to determine how to adjust the segments correctly,” said Alison Nordt, Lockheed program manager for NIRCam.
The tests measured NIRCam’s optical accuracy to be between 32 and 52 nanometers, Lockheed said.
The company added it delivered NIRCam to NASA in March 2014 to be installed into the Integrated Science Instrument Module, which has completed tests and is scheduled to be integrated into the optical telescope element for further trials.
The Webb telescope project is led by NASA in partnership with the European and Canadian space agencies and is scheduled to be launched in October 2018, Lockheed noted.