NASA to unveil 1st images from James Webb Space Telescope today. Here's where to find them.

This animation of the James Webb Space Telescope shows how light is reflected from its mirrors onto its scientific instruments.
This animation of the James Webb Space Telescope shows how light is reflected from its mirrors onto its scientific instruments. (Image credit: NASA)

Update for 12 pm ET: NASA has officially revealed the first images from the James Webb Space Telescope, which show 18 versions of the target star HD 84406. Read our full story here.

NASA will unveil the first-ever images from the James Webb Space Telescope on today (Feb. 11) and you'll be able to see them as they debut online. But don't expect a dazzling view.

The first images captured by Webb, the largest telescope ever flown in space, will be released today at 10:30 a.m. EST (1530 GMT) via NASA's James Webb Space Telescope blog. You'll be able to find the images here once they go live. NASA will also hold a press teleconference at 11 a.m. EST (1600 GMT) to discuss the images and Webb's latest progress since its Dec. 25 launch. That livestream will also appear at the top of this page once it begins.

Related: How the James Webb Space Telescope works in pictures
Live updates: NASA's James Webb Space Telescope mission

NASA scientists have said repeatedly that the first images from Webb, which is a powerful infrared observatory, won't resemble the stunning space photos from similar space telescopes. Instead, the first images are expected to be blurry and repetitive from the 18 segments of Webb's primary mirror. Those images were collected by the telescope's main camera, called the Near-Infrared Camera, and are are part of the telescope's fine-tuning process. 

"The early engineering imagery produced during this stage in the process, called 'segment image identification,' stitches together more than 1,000 images to form 18 unfocused versions of a single star," NASA wrote in an update Thursday (Feb. 10). "This serves as the starting point for gradually aligning Webb's mirror segments into one precise system."

The first target star for Webb was HD 84406, a sun-like star in the constellation Ursa Major that includes the star pattern the Big Dipper that is located about 260 light-years away. You need a telescope of high-power binoculars to see the star, as its too dim for the unaided eye to see. Here's our guide for the best telescopes for 2022, and our guide for the best binoculars may help you find the right pair to hunt Webb's star.

The star HD 84406 is located in the constellation Ursa Major, near the Big Dipper. (Image credit: SkySafari)

The alignment of Webb's mirror segments is expected to take up to three months so that the18 segments function as a single cohesive mirror. Once complete, Webb will be ready for its mission to peer deeper into the universe than ever before. 

The $10 billion James Webb Space Telescope is the largest and most powerful space telescope ever launched. It currently sits in an observing point called Earth-sun Lagrange point 2, a stable region of space on about 1 million miles from Earth in the direction away from the sun. There, the space telescope is expected to gaze into the cosmos to unravel mysteries of the first stars and galaxies, dark matter, exoplanets and other astronomical phenomenon. 

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Tariq Malik

Tariq is the Editor-in-Chief of and joined the team in 2001, first as an intern and staff writer, and later as an editor. He covers human spaceflight, exploration and space science, as well as skywatching and entertainment. He became's Managing Editor in 2009 and Editor-in-Chief in 2019. Before joining, Tariq was a staff reporter for The Los Angeles Times covering education and city beats in La Habra, Fullerton and Huntington Beach. In October 2022, Tariq received the Harry Kolcum Award for excellence in space reporting from the National Space Club Florida Committee. He is also an Eagle Scout (yes, he has the Space Exploration merit badge) and went to Space Camp four times as a kid and a fifth time as an adult. He has journalism degrees from the University of Southern California and New York University. You can find Tariq at and as the co-host to the This Week In Space podcast with space historian Rod Pyle on the TWiT network. To see his latest project, you can follow Tariq on Twitter @tariqjmalik.