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Voyager 1 escapes sun, enters new region of space

Discussion in 'Science & Technology' started by micropage7, May 17, 2013.

  1. micropage7

    micropage7

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    NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has finally left our solar system, 35 years after its launch.

    After cruising the “magnetic highway” that rings the very outskirts of the solar system, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has entered a new and unexplored region of space, although it had yet to exit the solar system, NASA indicated.

    "It is the consensus of the Voyager science team that Voyager 1 has not yet left the solar system or reached interstellar space," NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab said in a statement. "In December 2012, the Voyager science team reported that Voyager 1 is within a new region called ‘the magnetic highway’ where energetic particles changed dramatically. A change in the direction of the magnetic field is the last critical indicator of reaching interstellar space, and that change of direction has not yet been observed."

    The Voyager spacecraft was launched in 1977, and is far and away the most distant man-made object from the sun, at more than 11 billion miles away. A new study of cosmic rays and radiation posted online Wednesday in the peer-reviewed journal Geophysical Research Letters shows that the spacecraft has decisively left our corner of the sky, saying goodbye to the influence of the sun and the familiar eight planets that make up our cosmic neighborhood (sorry, Pluto).

    “It’s outside the normal heliosphere, I would say that,” said Bill Webber, professor emeritus of astronomy at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. “We’re in a new region. And everything we’re measuring is different and exciting.”

    The heliosphere is a region of space dominated by the sun and its wind of energetic particles, and which is thought to be enclosed, bubble-like, in the surrounding interstellar medium of gas and dust that pervades the Milky Way galaxy.

    According to the study, on Aug. 25, 2012, Voyager 1 measured drastic changes in radiation levels as it travelled the cold distant reaches of space. Anomalous cosmic rays, those that are trapped in the outer heliosphere, all but vanished, dropping to less than 1 percent of previous amounts. At the same time, galactic cosmic rays -- radiation from outside of the solar system -- spiked to levels not seen since Voyager’s launch, with intensities as much as twice previous levels.

    “Within just a few days, the heliospheric intensity of trapped radiation decreased, and the cosmic ray intensity went up as you would expect if it exited the heliosphere,” Webber said. He calls this transition boundary the “heliocliff,” as in, "Voyager 1 just fell off the heliocliff."

    That's the edge of our solar system, right? Mostly, Webber said.

    As Voyager continues to boldly go where no man has gone before, scientists continue to debate just where it is. Whether Voyager 1 has reached interstellar space or entered a separate, undefined region beyond the solar system remains up for debate, Webber said.

    In December, scientists said the craft was exploring an area at the far reaches of the solar system that they called “the magnetic highway,” the last stop before interstellar space.

    They described the magnetic activity at that point in space as unlike anything seen before.

    "The new region isn't what we expected, but we've come to expect the unexpected from Voyager," said Edward Stone, Voyager project scientist based at the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.

    http://www.foxnews.com/science/2013/03/20/voyager-1-leaves-solar-system/

    http://www.space.com/20313-voyager-1-leaves-solar-system.html
     
  2. jmcslob

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    Reading this makes me wanna watch the 1st Star Trek movie...

    Nice article...but when is Veeger going to stop communicating with the creator?
    If I remember right from science class I think its something like 2025 or more can't remember and to lazy to look it up.
     
  3. micropage7

    micropage7

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    yeah max is about 2025 before it loses its power
    and thats interesting so far this is one human made object that traveled so far
     
  4. jmcslob

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    It is amazing.
    It's even more amazing this was built in the 70's....I wonder when we'll build a craft to see how fast we can make it out of the solar system...Since Veeger has made us a much clearer map...
     
  5. AsRock

    AsRock TPU addict

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    Maybe they will find a way to send extenders to reach it's signal lol..
     
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  6. micropage7

    micropage7

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    why suddenly im kinda afraid if it found by alien, just imagine they run out of resources and find it
    they will realize earth has much resources and they gonna come to earth in minutes
     
  7. lilhasselhoffer

    lilhasselhoffer

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    In the next 100 years we will have biological implants that out perform our current biological ones. We will have access to new technologies, that we can currently only dream of. Our knowledge will be orders of magnitude greater than it is now. We are still unlikely to have faster than light travel methods.

    Now, for a moment consider how long it will take to make faster than light travel a reality. Let's just say that it only takes a society 4000 years from basic groups to faster than light travel. In that 4000 years you get to experience resource shortages for perhaps the the last quarter, as technology consumes the resources of the planet and the push for extra terrestrial sources becomes viable through technology.

    1000 years of resources being limited forces either an evolution of different resource utilization, or extinction. Those that survive will have learned to utilize their resources indefinitely, and thereby will not need to fly around space depleting other solar systems.

    I fear Voyager coming across a species that wants to use us as lab rats far more than I fear an interstellar strip mining operation. People advanced enough to not worry about resources are surely advanced enough to want to experiment with "lesser" species.
     
  8. de.das.dude

    de.das.dude Pro Indian Modder

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    Voyager was launched in the late 70's.. its 2013 now....

    sometimes i think people are not as sincere as they used to be.
    humans have become lazy.


    sometimes i think the voyager as the human race sending a single sperm into the vast void of the universe....
     
  9. CrAsHnBuRnXp

    CrAsHnBuRnXp

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  10. de.das.dude

    de.das.dude Pro Indian Modder

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  11. CrAsHnBuRnXp

    CrAsHnBuRnXp

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