33rd anniversary, "pale blue dot" photograph, Voyager 1 (and a nod to Voyager 2)

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I came across a story yesterday on my usual source of weather information (Accuweather).  The story marked the 33rd anniversary of the subject photograph, which does not look like much . . . AT FIRST.  A NASA source for the story can be found here:  https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/images/pia23645-pale-blue-dot-revisited

Then you realize that the tiny blue dot (less than a pixel, visible in a sunbeam captured in the photo) is the most distant photograph of our little planet. The last photo taken before the camera was shut down to save power for other important observations.

The photo was taken with equipment launched in 1977 (both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 were launched within weeks of each other in the summer of 1977).

Even more impressive is that both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 are still out there, sending data back home, and receiving communications from Earth.  Hurtling through deep space now, at blinding speed, in space so vast, and space objects so far apart, they have not run into anything since 1977.  They are so far away now, it takes more than 22 hours to receive data from Voyager 1, and the same amount of time to send instructions back. More impressive information about NASA's oldest active mission can be found here https://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/

If all goes well, the Voyagers are expected to continue operating and sending data until 2036.  I will be approaching 80 then. 
« Last Edit: February 15, 2023, 15:09 by Subversive_plot »
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How amazing that the sunray was in the right angle, and with such early technology. It is utterly astonishing that, nearly 50 years on, the craft are still providing useful information.
I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days all attack me at once...


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