Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Voyager II at the Edge of the Solar System?

NASA JPL released a podcast today that talks about the Voyager spacecraft launched in the late 1970s. The link to this can be found below.


The main discovery is that Voyager 2 while about 2 billion closer to Sun than Voyager 1 is encountering the edge of the solar system. Since the power generator will maybe last till 2020, the spacecraft will still be sending data when they might reach interstellar space. I find this intriguing because these craft along with some of the NASA Pioneer probes (and maybe some Russian spacecraft) could one day be the only remains of life on Earth.

According to the entry for Earth on Wikipedia, the Sun will become a red dwarf in 5 billion years. The increased radiation should wipe out most life on Earth at this time. As the sun cools that will be it for our solar system. More about this can be found at the link below:


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