Voyager-2 entered the ISM 119.7 astronomical units (AU), 11 billion miles from the Sun. The new findings confirm that the leakiness of the heliopause, spotted in two very different parts of the heliosphere, is not a rare characteristic of the bubble, although there is still no real explanation for what's causing it. Voyager 2 swung past Jupter, Saturn, Neptune, and Uranus. "Our journey has expanded deeper and deeper into space".
Plasma - the fourth state of matter after solids, liquids and gases - exists in the solar system as a soup of the charged particles beaming continuously outward from the sun and clashing with interstellar plasma that darts inward from other cosmic events like stellar explosions. This was when scientists knew it had entered a different region in space.
That Voyager 2 probably left the solar system in 2018, the American space agency Nasa already announced last December.
The investigations demonstrate that there are secretive additional layers between our nearby planetary group's air pocket and interstellar space. Material from the solar bubble was discovered in interstellar space. "The boundary layer we saw at Voyager 2 we couldn't see at Voyager 1 because we didn't have a working plasma instrument, so we couldn't see the density go up and the temperature go up", explained heliophysicist John Richardson of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. In that area, solar winds leak into space and interact with interstellar winds. It was previously thought that as you grow in interstellar space, the solar winds will gradually become lighter.
Now scientists have a complex picture of the environment on the Solar System's edge.
"It implies that the heliosphere is symmetric, at least at the two points where the Voyager spacecraft crossed", said Bill Kurth, University of Iowa research scientist and a co-author on the study.
The bubble's edge lies about three times the distance of the sun to Pluto.
Scientists hope to continue learning new details about interstellar space as the Voyager probes return new measurements.
That gives valuable clues to the structure of the heliosphere-the bubble, shaped much like a wind sock, created by the sun's wind as it extends to the boundary of the solar system.
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The fact that both Voyager 1 and 2, which launched in 1977 to explore planets in our solar system, were created to only last for five years and have reached 42 is a wonderfully exciting surprise, Stone said. "They are in their own orbits around the galaxy for five billion years or longer, and the probability of them running into anything is nearly zero".
But this record-setting feat wouldn't be possible without the engineers who have had to make crucial decisions that keep the twin spacecraft going.
When Voyager 2 crossed the boundary, it observed simultaneous increase in the intensity of cosmic rays, particles moving thought the space at almost the speed of light.
Some 12 billion miles from Earth, a frontier marks the edge of the Sun's realm and the start of interstellar space.
The thrusters on both spacecraft are also degrading.
"Voyager 1 exited close to the very 'front' of the heliosphere, relative to the bubble's movement through space", NASA said. A similar thing happened with Voyager 1. It's also using more power, so engineers turned off a heater for the Cosmic Ray Subsystem.
From beyond the heliosphere, the signal from Voyager 2 is still beaming back, taking more than 16 hours to reach Earth. After over 40 years, both are functioning well enough to measure cosmic rays from the Sun as well as from interstellar space; the properties of nearby charged particles; the local magnetic field; and, in the case of Voyager 2, the energy of the local plasma.
The data gathered by the probes has helped inform NASA's Interstellar Mapping and Acceleration Probe, scheduled to launch in 2024. 2019. Plasma densities near and beyond the heliopause from the Voyager 1 and 2 plasma wave instruments.