Here’s how astronomers color the images obtained by the James Webb Space Telescope

If you thought the spectacular images were unretouched, we’re sorry to disappoint you.

Here's how astronomers color the images obtained by the James Webb Space Telescope

The astronomy is a complicated science to approach, since they treat unfathomable distances in our head or images to interpret so that the general public can see them in all their dimension. The snapshots that revolutionized the world, including the galaxies distorted by spacetime or the chaotic galaxy Cart wheelThey are one sweet version of the pictures that he James Webb gets in his journey through the stars and the cosmos.

Interpreting images from the James Webb Telescope with care and skill

As you can see in the video uploaded by CNETand that we show you on these lines, the telescope space is capable of represent the universe thanks to some of instruments who is attached. These instruments are the near infrared camerathe near infrared spectrographthe tool of mid infraredthe guide sensor and one spectrograph. The images, once obtained, must go through a editing process so that they end up being as spectacular as those we have become accustomed to in recent weeks.

Color change in an image obtained by the James Webb Telescope

Color change in an image obtained by the James Webb Telescope. Nasa

The persons in charge of this treatment must convert infrared images by color mapping to different wavelengths. This is why these shots are so colorful and you can see colors as varied as red, yellow, white or blue. To clarify a little more, the longest waves They usually have shades redwhile the shorter wear the color blue present. Alyssa Pagan claims in said video that:

There are filters in instruments that collect certain wavelengths of light, which we then apply to a color closer to what we think it would be in the visible spectrum.

Different wavesafter being colored, go integrating in final composition, as if they were the layers of a Photoshop job. However, the work does not stop there, since the pictures must be carefully handled. Joe De Pasqualein the video itself, ensures What:

There are a wide variety of aesthetic elements that are integrated into this edition. You need to have great attention to detail, even at the pixel level, in every frame.

One of Alyssa’s Closing Argumentsmember of the team dedicated to playing with the images of James Webb and making them perfect for all of us to admire, is as interesting as it is philosophical:

When I work with astronomical data, I work on a kind of marriage between art and science. When choosing colors for filters, you are trying to show the different details and processes that occur in astronomical images. However, at the end of the day, you want to be compelling and do a great job because space is at a premium.

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