Nasa probe reaches for the stars in search for alien civilisation

This illustration shows the position of NASA’s Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 probes outside of the heliosphere a protective bubble created by the Sun that extends well past the orbit of Pluto

NASA Voyager 2 enters interstellar space, could become 'the only trace of human civilization'

Voyager 1 and 2, now at 145 and 120 AU from Earth, respectively, will take about 300 more years before the probes reach the anticipated closest edge of the cloud at 1,000 AU, and potentially 30,000 years before they pass beyond it entirely and finally exit the solar system. Their continuing science will help shed light on how particles flowing off the sun collide with the particles on the interstellar wind beyond.

"We are the only facilities in the world that can link communications with the Voyager 2 spacecraft".

"The mission is uncovering new mysteries", Opher said.

That journey could last for years if all continues to go well. While Voyager 1 is still going strong on its own journey in interstellar space, its PLS stopped working in 1980. For starters, it makes sense to say that the Solar System extends to the edge of the influence of the Sun. The greatest concerns about keeping the probes operating are power and thermal.

This was because the planned route for Voyager 2 was significantly longer, with it being set on a flyby course with numerous outer planets, revealing the first close-ups and important scientific data on planets such as Saturn, Neptune and Uranus.

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Mr Nagle said the spacecraft had enough power to run science instruments until 2025.

"We're learning a lot about the differences as well as the commonalities", he said.

The probe is estimated to be travelling at 34,000 miles per hour. It will take thousands of years for the spacecraft to get that far. "I think that would be fantastic". Voyager 2's counterpart, Voyager 1, previously entered the stars in 2012.

The NASA scientists detected a drop in the flow of the solar wind created by our Sun around November 5. By that measure, Voyager 1 is almost 145 AU from Earth, and the distance to Voyager 2 is nearly 120 AU. Our data have shown that there is a boundary layer 1.5 AU [139 million miles] in width inside the heliopause with enhanced densities and decreasing speeds coincident with an increase in the high energy galactic cosmic rays. In the closest approach of its entire tour, Voyager 2 passed less than 5,000 km above the planet's cloud tops. "Now we're looking forward to what we'll be able to learn from having both probes [in interstellar space]", Ms Dodd said in a statement.

While the probes have left the heliosphere, Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 have not yet left the solar system, and won't be leaving anytime soon. Their five-year lifespans have stretched to 41 years, making Voyager 2 NASA's longest running mission. How precisely that balance plays out could shape how hospitable these planets are to life. Thanks to this machine we received some information about such planet in the Solar system like Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus. The space agency said Voyager 2 will leave the Oort Cloud, "a collection of small objects that are still under the influence of the Sun's gravity", in approximately 30,000 years, so it is still being influenced by the Sun's gravity to some extent.

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