One of Europe's main contributions to the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is built and ready to ship to the US.
The Mid-Infrared Instrument (Miri) will gather key data as the $9bn (£5.5bn) observatory seeks to identify the first starlight in the Universe.
The results of testing conducted at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in the UK have just been signed off, clearing Miri to travel to America.
James Webb - regarded as the successor to Hubble - is due to launch in 2018.
It will carry a 6.5m primary mirror (more than double the width of Hubble's main mirror), and a shield the size of a tennis court to guard its sensitive vision from the heat and strong light of our Sun.
The observatory has been tasked with tracking down the very first luminous objects in the cosmos - groupings of the first generation of stars to burst into life.
Read More: http://www.bbc.co.uk...environment-18006933