Webb Moves to Johnson Space Center

  • Released Wednesday, May 31st, 2017
  • Updated Wednesday, May 3rd, 2023 at 1:47PM

May 2017 marked the end of an era for NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center because the James Webb Space Telescope has moved to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX.

Webb has been at Goddard in some form for 21 years. And with the completion of the acoustic, vibration and center of curvature tests, the telescope part of the Webb spacecraft was finally ready for the next big test - the cryogenic vacuum test in the Apollo-made-famous Chamber A.

Transporting Webb is a carefully choreographed dance. For the move to Johnson, the telescope was placed into a climate-controlled container called STTARS (Space Telescope Transporter for Air Road and Sea). A truck then slowly moved the large container during the night to Joint Base Andrews where it was loaded into a C-5 cargo airplane. The container is so tall that some power lines and traffic lights were moved.

After a flight to Ellington Field in Houston, Texas, Webb was driven to Johnson.

Webb was unpacked in Houston's Chamber A cleanroom and preparation for testing commenced.

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