About the Online JWST Dictionary

You may find yourself needing R&R from all in confusing JWST TLAs and FLAs (rest and recuperation, James Webb Space Telescope, three letter acronyms and four letter acronyms!). Well, you've come to the right place, the dictionary that defines what they mean!


Lisa May Walker and Dan Kiminki bravely set out to start defining and collecting definitions for the large number of acronyms used on the JWST project. They created an online web tool (this site) and a downloadable application for Linux and Mac based on Python. The downloadable application is no longer supported, so users should go to this site for the latest acronym updates.

Initialism vs. Acronym

Many take the view that an acronym should be pronounceable and used as a word, such as AWOL (absent without leave). JWST (James Webb Space Telescope), for example, where each letter is pronounced in sequence, is often described as an initialism. However, in keeping with the original name of this tool, we use acronym and initialism synonymously.