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    NASA to Launch New WFIRST Telescope Project Aimed at Studying Dark Matter

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    NASA (US National Aeronautics and Space Administration) plans to launch its new Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) in the mid-2020s to study dark energy and matter.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The decision to move forward with the WFIRST project was made on Wednesday by NASA's Agency Program Management Council, which evaluates programs on content, risk management and performance.

    "With a view 100 times bigger than that of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, WFIRST will aid researchers in their efforts to unravel the secrets of dark energy and dark matter, and explore the evolution of the cosmos. It also will discover new worlds outside our solar system and advance the search for worlds that could be suitable for life," NASA said in a Thursday release.

    WFIRST will be used to track down dark energy, which has been speeding up the expansion of the universe, and dark matter, an invisible material that makes up most of the matter in our universe, according to NASA.

    WFIRST is not an official mission yet, it has only moved from being a mission under study to one NASA intends to execute, the agency's spokesperson told Popular Science. According to the magazine, a 2016 spending bill provided $90 million toward developing WFIRST.

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