Roman Coronagraph Instrument Color Filter Assembly
This image shows a series of color filters on the Color Filter Assembly for the Coronagraph Instrument on NASA's Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope. Each filter blocks all but a specific color, or wavelength, of light. Many of the filters appear dark in this photo because they block all visible light – the range of wavelengths that are visible to the human eye – but are transparent to infrared light, which encompasses a range of wavelengths slightly longer than visible light.
Most of the filters will be used by the instrument for calibration purposes, but there are scientific uses for some of the filters as well. The presence or absence of different wavelengths can reveal properties of exoplanets (planets around other stars) including their chemical composition and the presence of clouds high or low in their atmospheres. For example, cold gas giant planets with high clouds will appear redder, like Jupiter, compared to those without high clouds, like Neptune.
The Roman Coronagraph Instrument was designed and is being built at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which manages the instrument for the agency. Contributions were made by ESA (the European Space Agency), the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the French space agency Centre National d'Études Spatiales(CNES), and the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy (MPIA) in Germany. Caltech, in Pasadena, California, manages JPL for NASA.
For more information about the Roman telescope, visit: https://roman.gsfc.nasa.gov/