Voyager 2

space probe launched by NASA to study the outer Solar System, second furthest spacecraft from Earth after Voyager 1

Voyager 2 is a space probe. It was used by NASA to explore Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. It is the only spacecraft that has come near to Uranus and Neptune. Because of this, most pictures of these two ice planets are from this spacecraft. It was identical in form to its sister space probe, Voyager 1. The space probe is currently moving away from the Solar System. It is heading out into interstellar space.

Voyager 2
Model of a small-bodied spacecraft with a large, central dish and many arms and antennas extending from it
Model of the Voyager spacecraft design
Mission typePlanetary exploration
OperatorNASA / JPL[1]
COSPAR ID1977-076A[2]
SATCAT no.10271[3]
Mission duration46 years, 7 months and 24 days elapsed
Planetary mission: 12 years, 1 month, 12 days
Interstellar mission: 34 years, 6 months and 11 days elapsed (continuing)
Spacecraft properties
ManufacturerJet Propulsion Laboratory
Launch mass825.5 kilograms (1,820 lb)
Power470 watts (at launch)
Start of mission
Launch dateAugust 20, 1977, 14:29:00 (1977-08-20UTC14:29Z) UTC
RocketTitan IIIE
Launch siteCape Canaveral LC-41
Flyby of Jupiter
Closest approachJuly 9, 1979, 22:29:00 UTC
Distance570,000 kilometers (350,000 mi)
Flyby of Saturn
Closest approachAugust 26, 1981, 03:24:05 UTC
Distance101,000 km (63,000 mi)
Flyby of Uranus
Closest approachJanuary 24, 1986, 17:59:47 UTC
Distance81,500 km (50,600 mi)
Flyby of Neptune
Closest approachAugust 25, 1989, 03:56:36 UTC
Distance4,951 km (3,076 mi)

Voyager 2 was launched on August 20, 1977. It is now in an extended mission. Its encounter with the largest natural satellite of Neptune, Triton sent it on a hyperbolic trajectory out of the Solar System. It was moving at about 16.62 km/s (37,200 mph; 59,800 km/h). This is much faster than escape velocity.

Both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 hold the Voyager Golden Record. This is a recording of sounds and images of life on Earth. It was designed by a team led by Carl Sagan. The Golden Record is to communicate with extraterrestrial life.

Voyager 2 is the second spacecraft to exit from the Solar System and enter into the interstellar space. It did so 6 years after Voyager 1. In 2018, NASA said that Voyager 2 had reached the heliopause on 5 November 2018.[4] On July 18, 2023, Voyager 2 overtook Pioneer 10 to become the 2nd farthest spacecraft from the Sun, at a distance of 133.917 AU (nearly 12.45 billion miles or approximately 2034.00 billion km) from the Sun. [5] [6]

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References change

  1. "VOYAGER:Mission Information". NASA. 1989. Archived from the original on February 20, 2017. Retrieved January 2, 2011.
  2. "Voyager 2". US National Space Science Data Center. Archived from the original on March 20, 2009. Retrieved August 25, 2013.
  3. "VOYAGER 2". N2YO. Retrieved August 25, 2013.
  4. "NASA's Voyager 2 Probe Enters Interstellar Space". NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. 10 December 2018. Archived from the original on 14 December 2018. Retrieved 14 December 2018.
  5. "Distance between the Sun and Voyager 2".
  6. "Distance between the Sun and Pioneer 10".

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