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NASA's James Webb Space Telescope Mission Invades SXSW 2017
Nobel Laureate John Mather and Northrop Grumman engineer Scott Willoughby talk to a crowd gathered around a model of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope at South by Southwest on March 9, 2013.
Credit: NASA

An interactive exhibit on NASA's next flagship observatory, the James Webb Space Telescope, has landed at the 2017 South by Southwest (SXSW) celebration in Austin, Texas.

NASA, the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) and the Northrop Grumman Corporation are hosting the space telescope exhibit from today through Saturday (March 12-18), NASA officials said in an announcement. SXSW visitors can find the exhibit at the Austin Convention Center, 500 E. Cesar Chavez Street in Austin. [In Images: Building the James Webb Space Telscope]

"The Webb telescope is NASA's top science program in development that will allow scientists to peer ever farther into the cosmos, seeing things no previous telescope has been able to see and explore the formation of the first stars and galaxies," NASA officials said in the announcement.

The $8.8 billion James Webb Space Telescope will launch in 2018. At the exhibit, visitors have the chance to speak with the scientists and engineers behind the mission and the science it will perform.

"The James Webb Space Telescope exhibit at SXSW will feature an augmented reality version of the telescope, an infrared camera demonstration, 3-D animation of the Telescope’s deployment and some of the unique materials used to construct the Webb telescope," NASA officials said.

On Tuesday (March 14) at 12:30 p.m. CDT, JWST scientists will present panel on the space telescope entitled "New Eyes on Our Home System: NASA's Next Telescope." (Location details here.)

"They will discuss the innovative technologies behind and fascinating science expected from the Webb telescope that will push the boundaries of what is capable for spacecraft," NASA officials wrote. "Panel topics will address the unique telescope's infrared capabilities to measure varying conditions and atmospheres of other planets."

Email Tariq Malik at tmalik@space.com or follow him @tariqjmalik Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook and Google+