James Webb Space Telescope (JWST)

Launch Time
Sat Dec 25, 2021 12:20 UTC

Flight VA256. The launch is funded by ESA in exchange for science time on the telescope from NASA.


Ariane 5 ECA
Image Credit: Arianespace
Status: Retired
Price: $200.0 million
Liftoff Thrust: 15,120 kN
Payload to LEO: 21,000 kg
Payload to GTO: 10,500 kg
Stages: 2
Strap-ons: 2
Rocket Height: 53.0 m
Fairing Diameter: 5.4 m
Fairing Height: 17.0 m

Mission Details

James Webb Space Telescope

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is a space telescope developed in collaboration between NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency that will be the scientific successor to the Hubble Space Telescope. The JWST will offer unprecedented resolution and sensitivity and will enable a broad range of investigations across the fields of astronomy and cosmology. One of its major goals is observing some of the most distant events and objects in the universe, such as the formation of the first galaxies. These types of targets are beyond the reach of current ground and space-based instruments. Other goals include understanding the formation of stars and planets, and direct imaging of exoplanets and novas.

Payloads: 1
Total Mass: 6,161.0 kg
Highly Elliptical Orbit


ELA-3, Guiana Space Centre, French Guiana, France



138th orbital launch attempt


289th mission
7th mission of 2021
278th successful mission
9th consecutive successful mission

Ariane 5

112th mission
3rd mission of 2021
107th successful mission
15th consecutive successful mission