After 36 years of traveling to the outer limits of our solar system, NASA announced today that Voyager 1 has traveled beyond the hot plasma bubble that surrounds the eight planets that orbit our sun.
The space agency released a statement today saying that it is now convinced that Voyager 1 is the first spacecraft to travel to what is know as interstellar space. Voyager 1 actually made its exit more than a year ago, according to NASA. But it’s not as if there’s a dotted boundary line out there or a sign that says last exit in solar system.
While some scientists say they are still not convinced, NASA celebrated Voyager’s journey to where no spacecraft has gone before.
“It’s a milestone and the beginning of a new journey,” said mission chief scientist Ed Stone at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.
Voyager 1 will now study exotic particles and other phenomena in a never-before-explored part of the universe and radio the data back to Earth, where the Voyager team awaits the starship’s discoveries.
The interstellar ambassador also carries a gold-plated disc containing multicultural greetings, songs and photos, just in case it bumps into an intelligent species.
Voyager 1 took off back in 1977 and as one scientist put it, “its setting sail in the cosmic seas between the stars.” Interstellar space is a vast, cold emptiness between the stars, traveling through it is the key for man to someday make contact with alien life in other solar systems.
For more on the story, check out [WashingtonPost]