34 Years Later (Bangor Daily News) . . . Happy Birthday, Voyager 1 & 2!


34 years later, Voyager 1 and 2 continue to travel in space

By Clair Wood, Special to the BDN
Posted Aug. 28, 2011, at 6:13 p.m.

A little more than 34 years have passed since Voyager 1 and 2 were launched in the fall of 1977. In that time, Voyager 1 has traveled 10.8 billion miles from the sun, while its counterpart has logged 8.8 billion miles. It takes a signal from Earth 16 hours and 13 hours respectively to travel to the two spacecrafts. Their travels have taken them to Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune plus 49 moons throughout the solar system. NASA’s Deep Space Network still picks up signals from the spacecrafts even though Voyager 1 is now at the edge of our solar system and is about to enter the sun’s heliosphere, the outermost shell of the sun’s influence, and will enter interstellar space within the next five years. In case some traveler encounters one of the spacecrafts in their lonely odyssey, each carries a golden disk that contains 55 languages, musical selections, drawing of human beings and coordinates of the solar system and the Earth’s location within it.

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And here is a picture of earth from the edge of the solar system: