Almost five decades ago, the Voyager probes began a long journey. After sending images of Jupiter and Saturn, it left the solar system. It was beyond the heliosphere, the bubble that protects our system. From there it continues to send data, although its technology is limited. That is why a new probe was thought of: the mission that will go further in space. And that will be the interstellar probe.
It would take about 15 years to reach the limit of the heliosphere. It took Voyager 35 years. The service life of the probe is very long – 50 years or more. It will reach approximately 1,000 astronomical units from the sun (i.e. 1,000 times the distance between the earth and our star). They are 150,000 million kilometers. Ten times further than travelers!
‘The ship will visit an unknown local interstellar space. It will go where humanity has never been before, “Elena Provornikova said in a statement. He is the heliophysical director of the interstellar probe at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Maryland, where the first outlines of the mission are being conducted . “For the first time we can photograph our huge heliosphere from the outside. We will know what our home looks like in the solar system.”
Long distance team
Only five spaceships escaped the sun’s gravitational field to leave the solar system. Pioneer 10 and 11, Traveler 1 and 2 and New Horizons, ”they explain on their website. As part of the mission, which will advance further into space, they are now looking for an “autonomous, compact and lightweight probe”. Robust enough to collect data and communicate with operators on earth. ‘The reference power source will be a thermoelectric radioisotope generator. It will ensure a stable power supply over long distances.
“The mission plans to take ‘pictures’ of our heliosphere with energetically neutral atoms. You might even see the extragalactic backlighting of the early days of our galaxy’s formation. Something that cannot be seen from Earth, ”explains Provornikova. They hope to “provide clues as to how other stars in the galaxy interact with their interstellar neighborhoods”.
You have been creating the project for three years, and it will be presented in a report to NASA at the end of the year. They’ll be sharing more details shortly about the potential science the interstellar probe could be conducting.