Voyager 2

NASA "grand tour" planetary probe

Voyager 2 is a space probe used by NASA to explore Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. It's the only spacecraft that has come near to Uranus and Neptune. Because of this, a majority of pictures we see of these two ice planets came 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, and 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 duration45 years, 7 months and 4 days elapsed
Planetary mission: 12 years, 1 month, 12 days
Interstellar mission: 33 years, 5 months and 22 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's 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, traveling at around 16.62 km/s (37,200 mph; 59,800 km/h) which is much faster than escape velocity.

Both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 include the Voyager Golden Record, which is a recording of sounds and images of life on Earth. It was designed by a team headed by Carl Sagan to communicate with extraterrestrial life.

Voyager 2 is the second spacecraft, which was able to exit from the solar system and enter into the interstellar space, 6 years after Voyager 1. In 2018, NASA announced that Voyager 2 had reached the heliopause on 5 November of that year.[4] In 2023, Voyager 2 is expected to overtake Pioneer 10 to become the 2nd farthest spacecraft at a distance of around 12.4 billion miles (around 20 billion km) from the Sun.

Related pagesEdit


  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.

Other websitesEdit