Voyagers in the Heliosheath: Artist’s Concept … And REALLY Cool!

This artist's concept shows NASA's two Voyager spacecraft exploring a turbulent region of space known as the heliosheath, the outer shell of the bubble of charged particles around our sun. After more than 33 years of travel, the two Voyager spacecraft will soon reach interstellar space, which is the space between stars.

Voyagers in the Heliosheath (Related Article Here)

This artist’s concept shows NASA’s two Voyager spacecraft exploring a turbulent region of space known as the heliosheath, the outer shell of the bubble of charged particles around our sun. After more than 33 years of travel,  the two Voyager spacecraft will soon reach interstellar space, which is the  space between stars.

Our sun gives off a stream of charged particles  that form a bubble around our solar system known as the heliosphere. The solar  wind travels at supersonic speeds until it crosses a shockwave called the  termination shock. That part of our solar system is shown in dark blue. Voyager  1 crossed the termination shock in December 2004 and Voyager 2 did so in August  2007. Beyond the termination shock is the heliosheath, shown in gray, where the  solar wind dramatically slows down and heats up. Outside those two areas is
territory dominated by the interstellar wind, which is blowing from the left in
this image. As the interstellar wind approaches the heliosphere, a bow shock
forms, indicated by the bright arc.

The Voyagers were built by NASA’s  Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., which continues to operate both  spacecraft. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in  Pasadena. The Voyager missions are a part of the NASA Heliophysics System  Observatory, sponsored by the Heliophysics Division of the Science Mission
Directorate.

For more information about the Voyager spacecraft, visit:  http://www.nasa.gov/voyager .

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

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