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Voyager 1 and Voyager 2

  1. Apr 12, 2003 #1
    Which spacecraft is further? i know 1 of the spacecraft hit jupiter a year later. and then went onto neptune. what i dont get is that they say when you get as far as neptune that is our solar system, we still have pluto and its moon charon in our solar system, yeah its far and it has been unexplored. i know NASA are setting up a new mission to explore pluto and charon to get geographic data etc.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 12, 2003 #2
    Voyager 1 is the furthest away, at 87.485 AU. Then comes Pioneer 10 at 83.302 AU, Voyager 2 is 69.851 AU, and Pioneer 11 is 63.699 AU. All my info was found at Heavens-Above And yeah, NASA is sending out the Pluto express, due to launch in 2008, I think.
  4. Apr 13, 2003 #3


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    Both Voyagers (NASA used to double each mission) reached Jupiter. Then one's path went "up" away from the plane of the solar system (because NASA sent it near one of Jupiter's moons that necessitated a big trajectory change). The other stayed within the plane of the solar system and continued on to check out Uranus and Neptune.

    Both hugely successful missions! :smile:

    You can define the edge of the solar system differently.
    - The orbit of the last big planet.
    - The outermost orbital point of Pluto (at it's innermost point in orbit, Pluto is closer to the sun than Neptune...but right now, Pluto is farther than Neptune from the sun)
    - The outer edge of the Kuiper Belt (beyond Pluto).
    - The outer edge of the Oort Cloud (beyond the Kuiper Belt).
    - The outermost edge of the solar wind's influence on the galaxy (before it becomes background noise with the rest of the suns' solar winds).

    In short, the solar system is not just the sun + 9 planets. The sun (which is the centerpiece of the solar system) has a lot more going on than just that.

    Let's hope it happens. A Pluto mission keeps being canceled and reinstated due to lack of funding.
  5. Apr 13, 2003 #4
    87.485 AU is roughly 8,136,105,000 miles

    It feels like I drive that much going to college (beh)

    This may be a little off-topic, but do any of you have a sense of awe and dread about how far space goes on?

    It honestly freaks me out when I think about it.
  6. Apr 14, 2003 #5


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    Just a speck on the tip of the iceberg!

    Definitely. Reminds me of my old sig line...
    "The Universe...is an unsettlingly big place, a fact which for the sake of a quiet life most people tend to ignore." (Douglas Adams)
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