- StarDate & Universo Radio Shows
Clouds of dust block our view of stars in our galaxy. The Spitzer Space
Telescope detects infrared light that penetrates the dust clouds, lifting
the veil for astronomers to see how dust coalesces into stars and planets.
The Spitzer Space Telescope (formerly known as SIRTF) is an engineering
marvel, and a cool telescope. The temperature of its detectors must be
cooler than the objects astronomers want to study. Unlike the Hubble Space
Telescope which closely orbits the Earth, the Spitzer Space Telescope will
follow or trail Earth in its orbit around the Sun.
Lyman Spitzer was a remarkable astronomer who dreamed of telescopes in
space. His dream has come true. Astronomers are now hard at work using the
Spitzer Space Telescope to explore star clusters for the dim infrared light
emitted by brown dwarf stars and signs of planet formation outside our solar
The Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed what could be the beginnings of a
new planetary system and young star. Astronomers can apply these
observations to understand how our own solar system may have formed several
billion years ago.
- Classroom Activities
- Spitzer Space Telescope
- Spitzer Legacy Programs