Humanity is fascinated by space and opportunitygo there. Just the thought of the possible conquest of other planets and interstellar flights makes our hearts beat faster. And yet, we are not sending people into space, but robots, and there are many reasons for this. So, a group of researchers from the Johns Hopkins Laboratory of Applied Physics (USA) wants to send the probe into interstellar space, according to the publication Wired. Pending NASA approval, researchers say the project could start as early as 2030.
What was the first step to interstellar space?
One of the most important achievements of humancivilization, of course, is the launch of the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 probes, which took place in 1977. Initially, Voyager was not intended to enter interstellar space. Their main task was to collect information about the gas giants - Jupiter and Saturn and our solar system. Today, these robotic devices have gone beyond the heliosphere and continue to send the received data to Earth. However, the journey of 42 years was reflected in the state of the probes, so sooner or later the connection with them will be lost. Read the latest news from the world of science and high technology on our channel in Yandex.Zen.
However, the information that probes can receive isplowing outer space can become truly priceless. Therefore, researchers from NASA intend to send into space vehicles aimed at long interstellar flights. The main plan of scientists appeared as a result of research on interstellar probes, which is funded by NASA. During the study, a spacecraft is launched into space, the weight of which is 770 kg. During the launch, the rocket is accelerated to a speed of more than 160934.4 km per hour - and this is fast enough to leave the solar system. The purpose of the device is to overcome 148 billion km from Earth in less than 15 years. For comparison, Voyager 1 and 2 took almost 40 years to fly just 20 billion km. Researchers believe that the first interstellar mission will lead to new breakthroughs in space exploration. Culturally and scientifically, this mission is inevitable. The only question is when will it take place.
Leaving the heliosphere
While Voyager 1 and 2 were only equippedbasic instruments, the proposed spacecraft will have many sensors that could better study interstellar space, which remains largely a mystery to modern scientists. And the exit from the heliosphere - the bubble region of the space around the Sun - may provide additional opportunities. We are inside the bubble, trying to figure out what shape it has and what happens outside of it, which is very difficult. The uniqueness of the interstellar probe lies in the fact that we can go out and photograph our small inhabited bubble in space. What do you think is outside of our solar system? Let's talk about this with the participants in our Telegram chat.
One way or another, planning for future interstellarmissions inevitably leads to deep philosophical thoughts. A full-fledged interstellar mission has long been considered impossible, but today, new technologies allow our robotic vehicles to travel as far from Earth as possible. Thanks to such space missions, we may finally receive an answer to the question of whether we are alone in the Universe.