Maker News Space
The Incredible Mechanism At The Heart of The JWST’s Adjustable Mirrors

Most of us geeks can easily agree that the James Webb Space Telescope is awesome. However, the degree to which eas of us is familiar with it frequently determines what aspect of it we’re most excited about.

The youtube channel Breaking Taps did a fantastic breakdown of the really cool mechanical system they use to make minute adjustments to each mirror. You see, each mirror on the giant assembly needs to be adjusted down to a fraction of a millimeter, in order to combine their reflections on the central lens.

So, when you’ve got to blast something into space, and every ounce of mass matters, how do you make a mechanical connector that can do all this fine adjustment, work in sub zero temps, and last a long time? Well, watch and see! it’s crazy how they do all this adjustment with a single motor, simply genius.


I get ridiculously excited seeing people make things. I just want to revel in the creativity I see in makers. My favorite thing in the world is sharing a maker's story. You can find me on twitter at @calebkraft

View more articles by Caleb Kraft