In the next few years, NASA will launch the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope, opening the door to new observations and a better understanding of the universe. The upcoming Roman Space Telescope will eclipse Hubble when it comes to the field of view, offering around 100 times larger panoramas while still utilizing around the same degree of image resolution and sharpness.
In addition to offering a much larger field of view, the Roman Space Telescope can also conduct sky surveys at up to 1,000 times faster than the Hubble Space Telescope. As a result of these upgrades, NASA says the upcoming space telescope will be able to shed light on the formation and evolution of galaxies “over cosmic time.”
The Roman Space Telescope will, NASA explains, help astronomers understand how the Milky Way galaxy formed, as well as aiding them in observing faint celestial bodies and other features of the universe. One of the key features offered by Roman is its spectroscopic tools, which observe the light from space objects and paint them in a “rainbow of colors.”
The spectrum of colors will enable astronomers to learn details about the objects Roman observes, including what they’re made of and how far away they are. Roman will be able to provide this spectrum of color for every object it observes, combing those details with its vast field of view and high-resolution imagery.
As one example, the spectrum of light will help astronomers understand how the stars in a galaxy formed, observing a galaxy’s history as well as its current state. It remains a mystery why galaxies stop forming new stars, but NASA says Roman will make it more likely that its experts will get to see this transition in action.