Exoplanet and Planetary Science with the James Webb Space Telescope
JWST is uniquely primed to unravel the mysteries of the star and planet formation processes, and make breakthrough discoveries in exoplanet and planetary science and the origins of life. It was designed around four main science themes, two of which are central in exoplanet and planetary science studies. The goal of the JWST Birth of Stars and Protoplanetary Systems theme is to unravel the birth and early evolution of stars, from infall on to dust-enshrouded protostars, to the genesis of planetary systems. The goal of the JWST Planetary Systems and Origins of Life theme is to determine the physical and chemical properties of planetary systems, and investigate the potential for the origins of life in those systems. JWST is uniquely primed to solve these mysteries given the combination of its high resolution observing modes, imaging, spectroscopy (including transit spectroscopy) and coronographic capabilities, and superb near and mid-IR sensitivity. JWST's planetary exploration theme also includes a rich solar system science case that includes imaging and spectroscopic characterization of Mars and the outer planets, Kuiper belt objects, dwarf planets, solar system moons, ocean worlds, asteroids, comets, and rings.
As the flight and science operations center for the James Webb Space Telescope, we will enable the astronomical community to transform ideas into scientific discoveries and help them obtain the best science. After launch, we will operate the observatory and maintain its systems and its orbit. During science operations, we solicit proposals to use the telescope, schedule observations, provide calibrated scientific data, and curate a data archive that is open to astronomers and the public.
JWST Science Resources
JWST Science Publications from the Community
July 1, 2018
April 1, 2018
September 1, 2016