The probe, which long ago crossed the boundaries of the solar system, detected a persistent hum of interstellar gas in May 2021. Voyager 1 is one of the most distant human-made objects and, above all, still operational.
It’s been about 46 years Since the launch of NASA’s Voyager probes into space. Decades later, Voyager 1 continues to send us precious data, especially now that it has crossed borders From interstellar space. What’s even more surprising is that the probe is still working. His tools have risen in recent days The constant hum of interstellar gasThis is what astronomers call the “plasma frequency.” In practice, it is one (or more) fluctuations of the electronic density in conductive media, such as metals, in the ultraviolet range.
New data sent by NASA’s Voyager 1 probe
As you can imagineThis is the data that the probe transmits to us from outside the boundaries of the solar system A long time to reach the ground. Billions Of kilometers Voyager 1 chapter about our planet. Well, it was the doctor Stella Hut OakA doctoral student in astronomy at Cornell University, she explained the discovery in May 2021. She said that the probe would have detected, thanks to its instruments, “a faint, continuous hum of interstellar gas.” Such tinnitus would be “weak and monotonous, precisely because it falls in a very narrow frequency band,” he added. This discovery allows scientists to understand how the interstellar medium interacts with the solar wind, and how the heliosphere (that is, the so-called protective bubble that surrounds our solar system) is formed and modified by an environment completely unknown to us.
What do we know about the “hum” detected by the Voyager 1 probe in interstellar space?
NASA’s Voyager 1 probe was launched in September 1977, first flying to Jupiter (1979) and then heading to Saturn (1980). The probe travels at a speed of about 38,000 miles per hour, and it crossed the edge of the solar system in August 2012. His connection speed has decreased From 160 bps to about half that. After entering interstellar space, the probe’s plasma wave detection system detected disturbances in the gas. The researchers found that among those explosions were largely caused by our sun Constant and continuous sound.
The medium between the stars
We have to imagine A medium between the stars Like a gentle, gentle mist. When solar flares happen, this is how to spot them Lightning explosion during a thunderstorm. Then the rain returns lightly. Uecker believes there is more low-level activity in interstellar gas than astronomers previously thought. This will allow researchers and scientists to track the density of interstellar space, when not disturbed by solar flares.
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