The Voyager Spacecraft, initially launched in 1977, is finally ready to leave our solar system, according to leading experts.
The latest data received from the probe suggests that it is presently along at the very rim of the solar system, which places it at some 18.5 Billion km from Earth. Because of this extraordinary distance, Voyager’s readings now take 17 hours to arrive.
When the craft finally does depart our solar system, Explorer would be the first man made ship ever to try and do so.
In 2004, the craft reached a place of space known to scientists as the heliosheath. It was probable that this might be the ultimate point of the solar system, nevertheless it turned out not to be the case. Now, almost a decade later, the craft’s readings are signifying that the fateful moment may finally be drawing near.
Actually, the evidence is so compelling that a number of specialists have argued that Voyager is already beyond the bounds of our space. Professor Bill Weber of New Mexico State University thinks that, due to numerous changes within the craft’s readings (particularly with regards cosmic ray intensity) Voyager has by now left the solar system for pastures new.
“We are in a new region. And everything we’re measuring is diverse and exciting.” He said.
NASA scientist Dr. Ed Stone, who’s worked on the Voyager project since the very start, holds within the concept that the craft has yet to exit our solar system. “It could be any day, but it really could also be several more years” he says.
It is supposed that Voyager can’t be considered to have left the sun’s domain until it has escaped our star’s magnetic influence. Dr. Stone believes that there is still evidence of this impact within the craft’s readings.
It is likely to take at least several months before a definitive declaration is made on that subject one way or the other.
What’s clear is that Voyager is closer to barriers of our solar system than ever before.
“The edge might be somewhat turbulent. We just do not know,” Dr Stone said. “This is exploration after all”
The Voyager Spacecraft was made to record data for those other planets in our solar system, ahead of eventually heading out into space itself. It completed its initial planetary survey in 1989 and is traveling through space since then. Its plutonium energy resources will finally die out in 10-15 years, after which period it will cease to transmit data and simply drift into the unfamiliar.