In 1977, NASA launched two spacecraft, Voyager 1 and 2, on a grand tour of the solar system and into the secrets of interstellar area. Famously connected to each of these probes is the Voyager Golden Record consisting of a message for any extraterrestrial intelligence that may encounter it, perhaps billions of years from now. Voyager 1 went into interstellar area in2012 Last year, Voyager 2 joined its twin beyond the heliosphere, explained by NASA as “the protective bubble of particles and magnetic fields developed by our Sun.” Today sees the publication of numerous scientific papers examining the data that Voyager 2 has actually sent out back considering that its crossing. Congratulations to the motivating researchers and engineers behind these latest papers and the extraordinary Voyager objective, still going strong 40 years later on! From NASA:.

Each paper information the findings from one of Voyager 2’s five operating science instruments: an electromagnetic field sensor, 2 instruments to detect energetic particles in different energy ranges and two instruments for studying plasma (a gas composed of charged particles). Taken together, the findings assist paint a picture of this cosmic coastline, where the environment developed by our Sun ends and the large ocean of interstellar space begins.

The Sun’s heliosphere is like a ship sailing through interstellar space. Both the heliosphere and interstellar area are filled with plasma, a gas that has actually had a few of its atoms removed of their electrons. The plasma inside the heliosphere is hot and sparse, while the plasma in interstellar area is colder and denser. The space between stars also consists of cosmic rays, or particles accelerated by exploding stars. Voyager 1 discovered that the heliosphere protects Earth and the other planets from more than 70%of that radiation.

When Voyager 2 left the heliosphere in 2015, researchers announced that its 2 energetic particle detectors observed significant changes: The rate of heliospheric particles spotted by the instruments plummeted, while the rate of cosmic rays (which generally have greater energies than the heliospheric particles) increased drastically and remained high. The modifications confirmed that the probe had entered a brand-new region of space.

The Voyager Golden Record 3xLP Vinyl Box Set and 2xCD-Book edition is available from Ozma Records

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Marco Bitran
Husband and father of two children under age 5, Marco also enjoys walks in nature, squash, running road races, and photography. He regularly contributes significant time and resources to the Combined Jewish Philanthropies, the MSPCA and other animal rights organizations, and the Bitran Charitable Foundation. Marco has also volunteered and consulted for public housing support organizations such as the Somerville Homeless Coalition, created by the local community’s grassroots response to the social crisis of homelessness.