NASA's James Webb Space Telescope

February 26th Social Media Q&A Session on Twitter

News Feature March 1, 2018

Promotional image for February 26, 2018 Q&A session.

STScI held the first Q&A session on our JWST Observer Twitter account on Monday, February 26, 2018 to help the community prepare for the JWST Cycle 1 proposals. We will conduct another session on Monday, March 5 at 3:00 pm (ET).  Please join us if you have any questions about proposing for Cycle 1.

Below are the questions and answers from the 2/26 session.

Q. How do I know if I’m using the latest version of APT?

A. When you open APT, you should get an alert saying a new version is available. Or you can check for updates in the application. Or you can go to the APT Overview page on JDox.

Q. How do I know how to break my observation up into groups, integrations and exposures for a given exposure time?

A. For MIRI recommended strategies, check out the MIRI Generic Recommended Strategies page on JDox. Similar recommended strategies pages for the other instruments can also be found on JDox.

Q. Is there guidance specifically for folks observing Solar System objects?

A. Yes! Here's a tutorial on creating solar system observations in APT.

Q. How can I get started using the JWST Exposure Time Calculator (ETC)?

A. There are several short video tutorials available on the JWST Observer YouTube channel, in addition to JDox documentation on the ETC. After you log in to the ETC website, there's also a list of Sample Workbooks you can download.

Q. What’s the workflow I should use for JWST proposals?

A. There is no single work flow to follow. It depends on your science case. But this JDox Cycle 1 Proposal Checklist and Resourcesarticle gives the basics.

Q. Can I observe the same target with two instruments simultaneously?

A. The instruments' fields of view have fixed (non-overlapping) locations in the JWST focal plane, so they can't look at the same field simultaneously. Some instrument modes can be used in parallel, which you can read about in the Cycle 1 Observation Types and Restrictions article in JDox.

Q. What if I can’t find the answer to my questions on JDox?

A. Reach out to the JWST Help Desk at .

Q. Could you please provide checksums such as sha256 or sha512 so that we astronomers can rest assured that the APT binaries have not been tampered with when we download them? (I ask as the website hosting them is not secured with https.)

A. We are in the process of completing the transition to "https:" with the next release on 5/14/2018. Please check the website after that date. In the meantime, we do have "https:" servers available at:

Q.  Can JWST directly image Proxima B? If not, what can Webb do to study the atmosphere of Proxima B?

A. JWST is not big enough to image Proxima B directly, as it’s too close to its host star. JWST instruments are well suited for studying exoplanet atmospheres. You can use the PandExo software to help prepare exoplanet observations.