Thursday, December 6, 2012
High Fives at NASA
Amid all the talk about the future of US manned space exploration, Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 travel on. Remember them? Launched in the summer of 1977 they were sent to explore our solar system - and beyond. They are each billions of miles from earth. Voyager 2, 9 billion. Voyager 1, 11 billion. The plan has always been that they would travel to the edge of our sun's sphere of influence, and go beyond into so-called interstellar space. The project team is still manned by some of the original visionaries. And now it appears that the project goal will be achieved. Get a cup coffee and visit the Voyager web page. Get ready to have your mind stretched. Visit the heliosheath heading towards the heliopause - the boundary where solar wind ends and interstellar space begins. Learn about the magnetic highway over which solar particles heading out into interstellar space pass particles coming the other way. Try to picture all this in three dimensions. Our space exploration was in its infancy when the Voyager mission was on the drawing boards. Here's a shout out to those who thought way outside the box.